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  1. #1
    Free Geek computerages's Avatar
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    Question designing site from scratch

    Hey everyone!

    I have tried to design one of my site for more than ten times, but stopped completing it for a few reasons. So, I have a number questions to ask to make sure that I wouldn't stop completing it this time:

    1. What steps should I take before designing a website?
    2. Should I use WYSIWYG editor or hand-code everything?
    3. Should I use tables to layout or just CSS?
    4. How do you go about desiging your site completely from scratch?
    Thanks for the help.

  2. #2
    The Mind's I ® silver trophy Dark Tranquility's Avatar
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    1- make a plan (sections, content...), create a sketch of how ur site will look graphically, choose the colors to use, choose the premade scripts you will use if any or create your own (mailing list, blog, poll...).

    2- depends if your a good coder and your not in a rush go for hand coding otherwise try Dreamweaver and preview your coding on FF, IE, NS 7 (not 8.0 beta) and Opera

    3- just CSS my buddy just CSS

    4- Start creating the graphics and the look code your site.

  3. #3
    Non-Member codejunkie's Avatar
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    I looooooooove CSS!!

  4. #4
    Non-Member Egor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by computerages

    1. How do you go about desiging your site completely from scratch?
    Don't force the design.

  5. #5
    #titanic {float:none} silver trophy
    molona's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by computerages
    Hey everyone!

    [*]What steps should I take before designing a website?
    What I do is writing down the sections/subpages that I will have, figure out the structure. Then I do a small graphic (paper or photoshop) of how I want the site to look. Nothing fancy, but including all the elements and, if I know, the photos/pics that I will use.

    Quote Originally Posted by computerages
    [*]Should I use WYSIWYG editor or hand-code everything?
    This is a question of preferences, speed and knowledge. I like to code, so I code, but if I am in a hurry, I first use the editor and then code (normally, you have to clean the code since no editor is perfect, so at the end, you really code). It also depends of how much you know, because obviously if you do not know much, there will be things that will be harder for you.

    Quote Originally Posted by computerages
    [*]Should I use tables to layout or just CSS?
    Again, it is a question of preferences and knowledge. If you know HTML and CSS quite well, even if your knowledge is not perfect, go for CSS. If your knowlege is limited, and you need the site quickly (it does not seem like it, if you tried so many times, though) then go for tables and when you have time try a tableless layout.

    Quote Originally Posted by computerages
    [*]How do you go about desiging your site completely from scratch?[/list]Thanks for the help.
    The first thing to know is what you want to say with the site, what is the message, and how are you going to express those ideas, and how to divide those concepts into different sections so the message is clear, well organized, and nice to the sight.

    Having the content helps because then you know what you are going to publish and you can divide it as you wish, and simply get a good idea for the visual layout.

    Now, if you don't know what you are going to write, then it is really hard (not impossible but extremely hard). Even if you do not have content, you need to know what you will be talking about and how to divide it into sections.

    That is why I create the structure first, with the links, (a small tree with the home page and the main subpages at least)

    Then, I think about the looks. If it is a personal site, you can be as experimental as you want, but if it is a professional site, well, the options reduce a little bit.

    When I have an idea, I draw it, or I use photoshop. I also use photoshop to look for color schemes and make sure that colors have enough contrast, etc.
    When I have my draft, I code it.

  6. #6
    CTO htmlguy's Avatar
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    Lightbulb

    Before you build a website you should...
    1. Draw what you want
    2. Come up with the content
    3. Write in the content
    4. Style and improve

    I personally hand code everything I do

    Both. Both CSS and Tables have different capabilities and you should utilize the best one for the section you are working on.

    Practice, practice, practice. I am a beginner messing around with my design site (link below) and once you start working with a site you get more expierienced. I am helping work for a site for my neighborhood which gives me practice.

    HTMLGuy

  7. #7
    SitePoint Member Tremble Fish's Avatar
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    HTML Guy is right on with a slight twist that might help you to carry the site on to completion. Or at least I find this method helps me to focus on the content of the site...

    It's important to make a sketch (on paper or in a graphics program...doesn't matter) of every page that you think the site should include represented by a box that includes the title.

    What I do next is to open my HTML editor (Dreamweaver) and create a page for each box that I've drawn out. For each page use only simple text and include the title of the page and a sentence about the purpose of the page. Includes any links (in plain text) to other pages.

    Now you have a template that you can use to fill in the content. Spend time writing and gathering content and fill in the content on each page.

    At this point you have created the site from a content point of view. You have a text only site. From here you can create a layout in your graphics program, translate it to code and fill in the content for each page. If your using Dreamweaver then you can save it as a Template with editable regions and attach the template to each page.

    WYSIWG vs. Handcode - WYSIWG is okay depending on your editor. Though in the long run you will benefit greatly from understanding the code.

    CSS vs. Tables - I prefer CSS

    Hope this is helpful. Good Luck on your site!
    - Matt
    Tremble Fish :: Design http://www.tremblefish.com


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