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  1. #1
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    Prefered method of building your site

    I am almost completely new to this whole thing and just started doing a tutorial on dreamweaver and fireworks. Towards the end of it, I started adding a pop up menu to the example tutorial site I was making and the it doesn't show up properly. The entire website is a table(I think) and when I preview the website as a html file and preview it in firefox, the pop up menu shows up as a horizontal table at the bottom of the main website table, other than that, the links on it still work...I also notice that on the index page with the most content on it, the tables of the website expand and the graphics have gaps in it.

    I've tried on my own and cant figure out what to do to fix those 2 problems. At first I was just thinking wow...this is pretty easy, but then things didn't come up right and I have no idea how to troubleshoot these things cuz 1. I dont really know dreamweaver/fireworks well at all, and 2. I don't know any coding at all...haha...

    So...thats why I'm here asking, after a brief look through a few threads and getting even more confused...what do you guys prefer for building your website? coding from scratch or using some program? It appears to me now DW and FW has some draw backs and maybe itd be beneficial to learn atleast some coding so I have atleast some understanding of whats going on so that I might actually be able to fix things like this...but it looks like theres just too much to learn...and I'm not yet entirely sure how beneficial all this will be.... >.>

  2. #2
    SitePoint Enthusiast hartofalyon's Avatar
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    photoshop mock-up, html/css by hand.

    happy new year.

  3. #3
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    whats a photoshop mock up?

    do most people not use a special program to make websites?

  4. #4
    SitePoint Enthusiast hartofalyon's Avatar
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    everyone has his/her own preferences. some find fireworks easier and faster to use to create web graphics. i prefer using photoshop because i'm used to the tools. a mock-up is basically creating the overall look of the website in photoshop. it's easier to get the overall look down, then slice the mock-up for html/css.

  5. #5
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy Tailslide's Avatar
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    Personally I use a free html editor called Araneae or another called PSPad.

    You don't really need a special programme to build a website though - you could do it in Notepad. The trick is to understand the code - really understand it. Once you understand it, the tool you use to build the site with is really personal preference. If you don't understand the code then it really doesn't matter which tool you use - the site probably won't be much good.
    Little Blue Plane Web Design
    Blood, Sweat & Rust - A Land Rover restoration project

  6. #6
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    it must be tough doing this just from notepad....i used fireworks to slice graphics and then to make that one pop up menu that didn't work properly...=/

    can you do what fireworks can do with photoshop (slice images)? I just learned that its photoshops competition, so its similar to photoshop but weaker?

    how come everyone here seems to have a signature that leads to there website and all the websites are web design/ing? x.x is there anyone here that just wants to create one (or a few) websites for other reaons than building more websites for other people? o.0

  7. #7
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy Tailslide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jepherz View Post
    how come everyone here seems to have a signature that leads to there website and all the websites are web design/ing?
    That'll be because this is a web design forum and we're web designers!!

    If you only want to build one site just for yourself and don't want to be bothered with learning how to build a site properly then look into WordPress. There are a ton of beautifull "themes" you can easily add (literally at the click of a button) and you don't need any fancy software - apart possibly from an FTP client (of which there are many free ones).

    Using WP you can at least know that the site is likely to work well cross-browser and generally be fairly good code-wise without you having to do much.
    Little Blue Plane Web Design
    Blood, Sweat & Rust - A Land Rover restoration project

  8. #8
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    If you want to make it really, really easy (until you get more familiar with editing and changing HTML codes) you can use a free WYSIWYG editor from nvu dot com and I'd recommend their latest version called Kompozer.

    It's super-easy to use. You can also start with free templates - just do a search or see hundreds of very nice templates you can edit and work with at oswd dot org - hope that helps!

    Happy New Year...
    Donna

  9. #9
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    There are basically three ways to build a web site.

    1. Use an online script that generates the pages for you where you just have to plug the content in via a back end admin utility - eg. WordPress, Joomla, Drupal

    2. Use a WYSIWYAG web editor where you drag and drop your content into the web page and hope that the editor generates valid HTML so that it will work properly in all browsers.

    3. Hand code the HTML for the pages yourself so that you have complete control of the resultant page content.

    Web editors themselves break up into three categories - those that handle the second of the alternatives I mentioned above, those that handle the third alternative, and some that can handle both.

    Some of the top web designers use DreamWeaver mostly in code view where they can control the exact code themselves while still having the editor able to show them the effect of their code without their needing to open a browser..
    Stephen J Chapman

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  10. #10
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    I have never used dreamweaver in my life (horah!) so I don't know this for sure but doesn't dreamweaver just display one browser? Is there a specific browser for which dreamweaver displays for?

  11. #11
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BBoardX View Post
    I have never used dreamweaver in my life (horah!) so I don't know this for sure but doesn't dreamweaver just display one browser? Is there a specific browser for which dreamweaver displays for?
    I think you'll find that DreamWeaver is effectively its own browser when it comes to displaying how web pages will look. Depending on which version you are using it either uses its own proprietary rendering engine or with some of the more recent versions at least some sections of the processing use the Presto rendering engine (the same one Opera uses).
    Stephen J Chapman

    javascriptexample.net, Book Reviews, follow me on Twitter
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    <input name="html5" type="text" required pattern="^$">

  12. #12
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    Hey man if dreamweaver was free I'd use it. Theres a reason it costs hundreds of dollars

  13. #13
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    I've tried dreamweaver before and partially created a site from it using the visual mode. It displayed it correctly, but when I try it on firefox or IE7 it doesn't show up right...

  14. #14
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    Which brings up the point why they call it WYSIWYG editors...

  15. #15
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BBoardX View Post
    Which brings up the point why they call it WYSIWYG editors...
    If you look back to my earlier post you'll see that I referred to it as WYSIWYAG since unlike a proper WYSIWYG editor that works away from the web you can never get 100% accuracy across all editors/browsers on the web and so it needs to be called "What You See Is What You Almost Get".

    You can never predict what changes individual visitors will apply anyway. I am currently browsing using Firefox 3 and have turned off the deprecated tags completely so that the browser will completely ignore those tags. It means that anything enclosed in a <center> tag isn't necessarily centered and anything in a font tag is completely unaffected by the tag. Rather interesting seeing how many web pages still rely on tags that were superseded by better methods of achieving those effects many years ago.
    Stephen J Chapman

    javascriptexample.net, Book Reviews, follow me on Twitter
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    <input name="html5" type="text" required pattern="^$">

  16. #16
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    Oh I know the technical reason, kind of self explanatory, but they need an option to view the code in all major browsers, like opera, firefox, and IE, instead of their own.

  17. #17
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    It is easy enough to set up a few dozen different browsers on your computer so as to be able to open a web page in each to check that it works properly. The only awkward ones are multiple versions of IE where to do it properly you either need a separate computer for each or to set up a virtual PC to run each of the extras in.

    One of my computers has five different versions of Opera installed making it easy to see which versions of Opera do or don't support any particular code in the page. The same computer has several versions of Netscape, Firefox, Safari, Lynx, a a webtv emulation.

    The only difficulty is where browsers render differently on different operating systems and an editor isn't going to be able to resolve that one either. If you consider that to be really important then you'd work on a mac and set it up to run OS/X, Windows, and Linux with appropriate browsers installed on each.

    Testing in the actual browsers themselves is always better than hoping that the editor will render the same way the browser does.
    Stephen J Chapman

    javascriptexample.net, Book Reviews, follow me on Twitter
    HTML Help, CSS Help, JavaScript Help, PHP/mySQL Help, blog
    <input name="html5" type="text" required pattern="^$">

  18. #18
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    What I think most people do is do dreamweaver "stuff" then see how it all looks, then fix the little bugs. Or at least that is how i would do it

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by jepherz View Post
    I am almost completely new to this whole thing and just started doing a tutorial on dreamweaver and fireworks. Towards the end of it, I started adding a pop up menu to the example tutorial site I was making and the it doesn't show up properly. The entire website is a table(I think) and when I preview the website as a html file and preview it in firefox, the pop up menu shows up as a horizontal table at the bottom of the main website table, other than that, the links on it still work...I also notice that on the index page with the most content on it, the tables of the website expand and the graphics have gaps in it.

    I've tried on my own and cant figure out what to do to fix those 2 problems. At first I was just thinking wow...this is pretty easy, but then things didn't come up right and I have no idea how to troubleshoot these things cuz 1. I dont really know dreamweaver/fireworks well at all, and 2. I don't know any coding at all...haha...

    So...thats why I'm here asking, after a brief look through a few threads and getting even more confused...what do you guys prefer for building your website? coding from scratch or using some program? It appears to me now DW and FW has some draw backs and maybe itd be beneficial to learn atleast some coding so I have atleast some understanding of whats going on so that I might actually be able to fix things like this...but it looks like theres just too much to learn...and I'm not yet entirely sure how beneficial all this will be.... >.>
    I would say the easiest way to build you site is to use fireworks to do a layout of your site (or how you would like it to look). Then cut it into sections and then do a basic css template using dreamweaver but try to hand code the page and use dreamweavers colour codes as a guide. Use the cut up sections from fireworks to background all the bits in the new html template you are using in dreamweaver. BTW if you need veticle expanding boxes you may need to use 3 sections to do it if your box has round corners( top middle bottom; be careful if you are matching patterns.
    Try not to use any tables at all as they are unpredictable in a cross browser situation. Tables are for holding data and forms although it is pretty easy to make forms without tables Test test test it in different browsers and dont forget the new crome browser (it renders some stuff like IE6 for some reason)

    it gets easier through time


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