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  1. #76
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    I always design the site first as the step in starting a site.

  2. #77
    SitePoint Member ruhani's Avatar
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    I'd suggest to design the user interface of the applications first of all and then move ahead with the development of scripts and database connectivity. It is always best to have a mockup design of how the system will look like so that there is no hit and trial during the development.
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  3. #78
    SitePoint Enthusiast tokyobabydoll's Avatar
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    Site structure in paper first, then design. I implement the template first though before coding the backend.
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  4. #79
    Entrepreneur Spencer F.'s Avatar
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    You forgot the most crucial step (at least to me).

    1. Write the copy. Get it solid. Writing copy will help you plan/design the website.
    2. Mock up next after the copy is good to go.
    3. Code away!
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  5. #80
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    I would say get as much requirements info from the client as possible.

    Then use a very easy to use tool to do the design in Photoshop and generate a dynamic front end. You can use that to communicate further with your client what their expectations are, what the possibilities are, etc. and come to a better understanding with your client. Ideally the tool should allow for very very fast iteration of design modification and live web pages.

    Then do the back end design, and finally tweak (if necessary) what was generated from the Photoshop design and attach to the backend with whatever server side scripting is required.

    The key to this work flow is how simple taking the photoshop design to a working front end is - the coding of the CSS and HTML. psd2css Online will do that part for you free quick and easy in seconds.

  6. #81
    Django Jedi neron-fx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smcintyre View Post
    The key to this work flow is how simple taking the photoshop design to a working front end is - the coding of the CSS and HTML. psd2css Online will do that part for you free quick and easy in seconds.
    No offence smcintyre, but I would not be encouraging people to use something like psd2css online! Sure its great if you are web nobby who is just playing around with web design for the first time, but I fail to see how an automated tool can take Photoshop files, slice them up and create standards compliant, cross browser compatible, accessible XHTML and CSS markup. You cant beat the good old fasioned hand rolled, manually tested code
    Neron-Fx
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  7. #82
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    I agree - hand written CSS/XHTML by a seasoned professional is probably going to be better code. But that is time consuming and a talent of the relatively few. And the fact is that the online tool really does take Photoshop files, uses the layers and 'create standards compliant, cross browser compatible, accessible XHTML and CSS markup'. Including drop down menus, photo gallerys and all sorts of stuff. Give it a try.

    But my point wasn't one of who or what can write the very best code - I was suggesting a change in workflow based on the availability of a specific kind of tool.

    Getting a clear description of what your client wants out of your client is the hardest part of having clients. Unless they don't mind, and you don't mind the never ending 'that is great, but can we add this over here' or 'that is fantastic but can we move this down here now?' cycle, getting a clear description up front means you get the job done quickly and professionally. You look better, are more productive and your client is happier.

    I'm a programmer so my first inclination is to design the back end first. But having a tool to generate the front end and demo it for my client quickly and especially being able to modify it and redemo it all in the same phone call has proven really valuable.
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  8. #83
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    design first before developing. this method is ok.

  9. #84
    SitePoint Evangelist
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    Its better to design first than doing development

  10. #85
    SitePoint Guru ripcurlksm's Avatar
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    I am just learning this after 7 years of switching between designing and developing.

    Draw out every page on paper (or digital) and chart the flow through the site, with all the criteria for each page. This will take you 20-30 min maybe. You will be able to see any pitfalls or problems perhaps immediately and you can accommodate for these changes before even starting the project.

    This is so critical, saves YOU so much time + allows for you to possibly charge more for the project due to unseen circumstances + manage clients expectations on the timeline -- All before you open Photoshop or Dreamweaver.

    Edit: (1) After the site's structure and requirements for EACH page is identified and agreed upon, then (2) start the design (3) With client, finalize design and site requirements (4) Develop
    Last edited by ripcurlksm; Aug 14, 2008 at 12:14.

  11. #86
    Django Jedi neron-fx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smcintyre View Post
    I agree - hand written CSS/XHTML by a seasoned professional is probably going to be better code. But that is time consuming and a talent of the relatively few. And the fact is that the online tool really does take Photoshop files, uses the layers and 'create standards compliant, cross browser compatible, accessible XHTML and CSS markup'. Including drop down menus, photo gallerys and all sorts of stuff. Give it a try.

    But my point wasn't one of who or what can write the very best code - I was suggesting a change in workflow based on the availability of a specific kind of tool.

    Getting a clear description of what your client wants out of your client is the hardest part of having clients. Unless they don't mind, and you don't mind the never ending 'that is great, but can we add this over here' or 'that is fantastic but can we move this down here now?' cycle, getting a clear description up front means you get the job done quickly and professionally. You look better, are more productive and your client is happier.

    I'm a programmer so my first inclination is to design the back end first. But having a tool to generate the front end and demo it for my client quickly and especially being able to modify it and redemo it all in the same phone call has proven really valuable.
    Hi smcintyre,

    Ahh I see, fair enough I understand what you are saying now! I am also a developer by trade but love to dabble with Photoshop, XHTML and CSS... Plus I'm a bit anal about using code that is not my own so always build everything from scratch its the only way to quality assure my applications to my clients . Thats not because other people's code is crap (well some is ) its more to do with the fact that I like to know what is going on EVERYWHERE in everything that I build. Makes bug hunting and modifications 100 times easier.... plus I just don't trust 99% of other developers (probably due to some bad experiences of working with people who have/had terrible coding practices)
    Neron-Fx
    Everytime a user opens Internet Explorer, a web developer dies...
    http://www.savethedevelopers.org/

  12. #87
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    Backend first while doing the design on paper

  13. #88
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    I normally make a quick design, do the development and them tidy up the design.

  14. #89
    SitePoint Addict seo-neon's Avatar
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    it is better to design first rather than developing...


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