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Hi all,

I'm a java web developer (back end mainly) and write my html by hand but this is slow and doesnt compare to the fancy professionally looking sites that dominate the web.

So, my question is what are people using to develop visually appealing websites ?

Thanks for any feedback.

Jason.

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Last Post by teedoff
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For basic websites, you could use Microsoft programs like FrontPage.
I'm not a fan of this kind of developing, but you could use Adobe Dreamweaver. You could go to those websites, and look at their code.
You could use a WYSIWYG editor too.

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I would agree that Dreamweaver is the best tool right now, but if you can't afford it you should try using the aviary site. they have a lot of open source online tools that you can use.

aviary.com

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I know the problem - you're capable of creating everything from scratch, but it is time-consuming and being a backend guy (like myself) you're not exactly an artist or designer.

Two years ago I began converting client sites, that I had previously hand-built from scratch, to Joomla. Since then, I have converted most of my own sites as well and have never been more pleased.

Beautiful, flexible and powerful designes are as easy as a few mouse-clicks (OK, sometimes they take a bit of work, but not 10% as much as building from scratch).

I'm a php/database developer, yet I almost never have to code a custom app because so many third-party add-ons are available for almost every need you can think of - and 95% of them are FREE, as is Joomla!

Check out these Joomla sites -
www. Web-Professor. com
www. CompuSolver. com (mine)

I forgot to mention that Joomla is a content-management system that can be installed and setup in minutes. My hosting company - ok-joomla-hosting.com - offers Joomla as an automatic install option. Sites like Rockettheme.com offer fantastic templates (designs) for Joomla.

For more info, see: http://www.Joomla.org

Edited by Ezzaral: Link disassembly.

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Coding and design are 2 different things. Both need different skill sets.
Best practice is designers design websites/GUI and coders do all code stuff.


then you can get design converted to XHTML and integrate to your application.

Edited by Ezzaral: Snipped link. Please restrict such links to your site-wide user signature, which can be edited from the user control panel.

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DREAMWEAVER!! I started using it about 2 months ago and am loving it! There are some free tutorials by adobe, and on develpphp.net but you can also pick up a bunch of really cheap ones on ebay in PDF form.
CS5 has recently come out, so you can find CS4 some places for half price- I ended up buying the whole web premium CS4 with photoshop,etc. for roughly what I would have paid for CS5 of just dreamweaver.

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I don't understand why people like Dreamweaver. It creates ugly non-standard compliant code. It costs an arm an a let and It's no better than Frontpage. Your better of using nvu (which is free) or Expression Web.

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If you are talking about visual aspect of websites, then Photoshop or any other raster editor which has more functionality than MS Paint is what you need. But in the end it all depends on your creativity and design skills.

If you are talking about converting alrady existing web design (.psd or something similar) to standarts compliant shiny XHTML, CSS and Javascript, then Notepad++ is probably the best tool. All WYSIWYG editors are crap since they generate awful code.

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> I don't understand why people like Dreamweaver. It creates ugly non-standard compliant code. It costs an arm an a let and It's no better than Frontpage.

You can't be serious? I usually use text editors (Notepad++) for developing and design. DW is useful for setting up projects, FTP, synchronization, remote file manipulation, code autocompletion and parameter suggestion. Anybody who needs a WYSIWYG environment isn't truly designing/developing. Other useful IDEs are Netbeans and Aptana.

Joomla is useful, but I don't like it. Trying to mess around with other people's code makes me sick.

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> I don't understand why people like Dreamweaver. It creates ugly non-standard compliant code. It costs an arm an a let and It's no better than Frontpage.

You can't be serious? I usually use text editors (Notepad++) for developing and design. DW is useful for setting up projects, FTP, synchronization, remote file manipulation, code autocompletion and parameter suggestion. Anybody who needs a WYSIWYG environment isn't truly designing/developing. Other useful IDEs are Netbeans and Aptana.

Joomla is useful, but I don't like it. Trying to mess around with other people's code makes me sick.

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>> You can't be serious? I usually use text editors (Notepad++) for developing and design. DW is useful for setting up projects, FTP, synchronization, remote file manipulation, code autocompletion and parameter suggestion. Anybody who needs a WYSIWYG environment isn't truly designing/developing. Other useful IDEs are Netbeans and Aptana.

I don't use any WYSIWYG editors but I've seen the resulting code from Dreamweaver. Which is usually used as a WYSIWYG. Anyway, whether you use it as a WYSIWYG editor or for setting up projects its still too expensive.

From my point of view I have a choice. Pay $500 for a student licence for Dreamweaver & Photoshop, Use a combination of gimp, filezilla, and notepad++ for free, or get a free student licence for Expression Studio, Using Design and Web (inc. superpreview). Its not a tough choice. Expression Web has FTP, code autocomplete, link checking etc. not to mention being fully compliant with w3c standards.

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I agree - it is expensive. However, if you can pick up a cheap MX2004 copy...

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Hi all,

I'm a java web developer (back end mainly) and write my html by hand but this is slow and doesnt compare to the fancy professionally looking sites that dominate the web.

So, my question is what are people using to develop visually appealing websites ?

Thanks for any feedback.

Jason.

Most people use Photoshop or similar tool to do the artwork and conceptualize, and then later slice it and breathe life into it using hand-coding.

Hand coding does not have to be that slow...too often you need similar elements - navigation, contact form...so you can have ready made code for all of these and just tweak it as needed.

If you refer to making beautiful sites without going artistic...well there are a bunch of website templates, with basic layout code included. There's also Wordpress with an infinite choice of professional themes, and there is also this Joomla which I see as "just add water" solution, but it has a really creative community and beautiful templates, that is a fact.

I'm all for hand-coding though.

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Hand coding does not have to be that slow...too often you need similar elements - navigation, contact form...so you can have ready made code for all of these and just tweak it as needed.

Yes. Cut 'n paste repetitive things like forms and tables, tweak the parameters the parameters as needed and it goes much faster.

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DW is very useful, and the sites I have designed in it ALWAYS are symantic and validate with standard compliant code. You cant just let DW stick everything it wants in there though. You should know code yourself and be able to recognize good symantic code. As far as the question, DW is good and like someone said, older versions can probably be picked up for pretty cheap. DOnt go back past CS3 though.

Notepad ++ is a good free text editor, but you HAVE to know how to code by hand. Also, html Kit Tools is nice, although its not free either. They have a trial version, but the full version is I think $50, dont quote me on that.

JEdit is one that many professionals are using. I havent had any luck with it yet, since I downloaded some of the hundreds of add-ons they have, and got several errors. SO still messing with it.
btw dont use Frontpage it sucks! lol

btw, I dont recommend creating web pages with an image editor like photoshop or fireworks. Use them for thwt they are intended...image editing. Other wise, you will spend alot of time trying to figure out how to code a picture.

Edited by teedoff: n/a

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