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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Desperately seeking...help...

    Hi there,

    I'm a newbie to this forum, and I hope you don't mind my starting out asking dumb questions. If I don't belong here, feel free to ignore me! I'm a 40 year old mom, with a natural born desire to create websites, but after trying many HTML editors, reading tons of books, printing as many code dictionaries as I could find, and more recently becoming unsettled that my newfound knowledge of HTML may soon be overthrown by XML, I'm in a tizzy. I'm not sure I can do this, and I can't make up my mind what direction I should take. I actually registered a domain name that I intended to make into a site/e-zine for women, but by the time I get the site up, the name will be expired! I basically need a simple newsletter type design, with pages set aside for articles, quizzes, questionnaires, photo essays, and archives. I can build from there if the site does well enough. Does anyone have any pity, I mean, advice, and if so, would they be kind enough to give me some ideas on which would be the best editor, or way to bring my phantom site into virtual existence? I am a writer by nature, and I didn't want to expend all my energies toward the site, as I did on the content. Thank you from the bottom of my heart to you dear souls who'd care to reply! Have a good night! Janice

  2. #2
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    Well first off all I would suggest getting your deisgn laid out... Consider things like what fonts to use, what colours... Where will the navigation be, where will the logo be... Do you have a logo...

    Once you have the design you can set up a simple template system and creating the content should be relatively easy...

    A few more questions though, how often do you plan on updating the site? Will others be updating it for you? You'll need a way to keep track of everything, organisation on any site that has numerous articles is especially important...

    Also ignore XML for now, for what you are doing I think it might be a little too complicated, and it sounds like using static pages would be your best bet...

    What WYSIWYG editor are you planning on using, you may find it a lot easier to hand code but this is personal choice... If you do, check out wwww.w3schools.com for some fantastic explanations on xHTML and CSS...

    My personal opinion is work on the deisgn first, make sure you know HOW you want it to look, then look at implementing it...

    Will help as much as I can from here

  3. #3
    My precious!!! astericks's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Wizardx8
    What WYSIWYG editor are you planning on using, you may find it a lot easier to hand code but this is personal choice
    Originally posted by janaquino I didn't want to expend all my energies toward the site, as I did on the content.


    For the editor, I'd suggest dreamweaver. MX, dw 4 or ultradev is a choice of yours...and on how much you wanna spend. Try Ebay, you might get lucky.

    As for the site, a good coding language would be php, but I suggest you plan on using that when the site grows bigger or when you decide to get your visitors more involved with the website. I suggest you start small since you dont have much time. Make it in simple html and of course, as wizardx8 said, know how you want it to look and make a template.

    Another thing, how you organise your site depends on how often you plan to update your content [esp giving the pages names that make sense to you if you're the one administering the whole thing]

    hope this helps...a bit

    asT.

  4. #4
    Former Staff Member silver trophy Adam P.'s Avatar
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    If you need a nice design and you don't have the skills or the programs to make one of your own, check out the Trading Post here at SitePoint. You can trade money or perhaps some other services in exchange for a complete design - HTML code and all. Keep in mind that people will hold interest in the contest if you put a good prize up for grabs.
    SPF Mentor/Advisor 2001-2003
    SPF Designer of the Year 2002
    SPF Graphic Designer of the Year 2003
    AdamPolselli.com

  5. #5
    SitePoint Guru moonman's Avatar
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    If you're struggling with a design, take a look at Cool Home Pages for a few ideas. Also Dynamic Drive have some cool effects that are easy to implement.

    As for the HTML editor, I found FrontPage better than DreamWeaver, but I'm in a minority. If you're gonna hand code, I can recommend EditPlus.

    As Wizard said, ignore XML for now, as you're just begining, you can create a very good website with HTML, CSS and some effects from Dynamic Drive.

    Good luck

  6. #6
    SitePoint Member Abhoth's Avatar
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    Read This ... then read more, until your eyes bleed! But sounds like you've been doing that. ;-/
    As far as editors... depends upon your comfort level. Dreamweaver is damn good, but can be confusing but not too bad in the learning curve department... Best bet before laying out a bunch of $$$ is to get a few trial versions and see if it's right for you...
    Only other advice would be to post here, post here often... there are no stupid questions, only those not asked.

  7. #7
    SitePoint Guru
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    Don't worry about making mistakes. Fixing them is the best way to learn. I'd agree with the advice about the software. Dreamweaver if you can swing it. MX if possible. I don't have that version yet, but it sounds great. Learn CSS and work with HTML. HTML isn't really going anywhere for a long time, but you will want to use CSS rather than the deprecated tags as much as possible.

  8. #8
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    Have you started yet?

    If so,

    When you just post a question with some code. I agree with Wizardx8 too, don't be concerned about xml for now. I'm sure Web Browsers will be backward-compatible for quite awhile. If anything, make sure every tag is either self-closing or has a closing tag, values have double quotes and everything is properly nested. That would prepare you for the w3c's xhtml recommendation... http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/

    Write On!
    // PS! My brain just hit a bad sector...

  9. #9
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    Thanks so much!

    You guys are great! Thanks for not making me feel like an idiot, and taking the time to give me some suggestions. I hope you won't mind if I ask some more, and learn from you as I do this thing. It's wonderful to know there is support, and I'm glad I found you guys! Have a nice weekend! Janice

  10. #10
    Non-Member Forlorn's Avatar
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    What do you have on your cpu like graphic programs and what HTMl editors do you have at all

    HTML editors recomend for first time users try FrontPage. I know it sucks but I say use it so you can get used to coding and see how things look. Then go into Dreamweaver or Go Live

  11. #11
    SitePoint Guru
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    It does suck, but you can learn a lot that way. Another options is to download Mozilla. It's free and the Composer that comes with it is a lot better than the earlier versions of Netscape Composer. It'll do things in a more standards compliant way, too.

  12. #12
    SitePoint Enthusiast
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    HomeSite is my editor of choice. However, since it was bought-out from Allaire by Macromedia, it's price has gone up considerably ($99). (http://www.macromedia.com/software/)

    A tool very similar to HomeSite is AceHTML PRO ($59), http://www.visicommedia.com. There used to be a free version of this one, but I'll be darned if I see one now!

    I wouldn't recommend FrontPage to my worst enemy. (Just me.) Dreamworks and similar products are w-a-y more advanced (and expensive) than you need at this point.

    'Course if you want to keep the budget way down, you can use the first text editor I ever tried: Windows' own WordPad. I coded with that for a year before I was introduced to HomeSite.

    Hey, it works.


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