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Re: Or bribe a programmer...

9/6/2005 12:01 PM
MBSetzer
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Re: Or bribe a programmer...
I'm with Ross on this, you really would not be marginally qualified to select advanced web authoring tools until after you have understood at least the basics of simple HTML and how to edit and post primitive HTML-only pages using notepad, organizing your folders locally on your own HDD, and uploading them manually via FTP.  
 
Then depnding on what you want beyond that, you would be better informed and able to avoid costly software which is simultaneously ineffective by default when it comes to reaching the widest WWW audience.  
 
Macromedia for instance is quite insidious since it appears every opportunity has been taken to benefit Macromedia (and the commercial web authors using it) at the expense of the site owner and the web visitors. And that's if you don't have to pay any $ for Macromedia Dreamweaver, if you actually paid for this POS it is even more unfortunate.  
But it is *flashy*, however you can put all the same flash files in at your discretion & control using any editor. But you have to know what you want, by all means avoid flash buttons or menus for links to anywhere. Best is to use regular HTML links for everything, they can point to flash or java files whenever you or your visitors want to click on them and allow scripts to run in their browser.  
 
Java is also now best completely avoided due to new and emerging security concerns as well as conflict between Microsoft & Sun, so the best bet is once again HTML-only.  
 
You can get a second-hand HTML textbook for little or no cost these days if you select an obsolete one, like from the late '90's, and an obsolete version is more effective at reaching a wider browsing audience due to backward compatibility. Plus there is less to study without all the new excess features, it will only take a couple hours before you have the authoring and editing down pat.  
 
Then you get (well you're stuck with) complete control of local storage and testing of your site or its component pages (plus manually clearing the browser cache of temporary internet files between key retests), so if you don't already know how to create new folders & subfolders, find the folders later, move and/or rename files in & out of the folders and keep track of them in Windows Explorer you would have to learn that and it may take a few hours too, but you should have been acquainted with this office-machine process since Windows 3.1 or at least W95 :)  
 
Finally, even with good old IE5.5 with Service Pack 1 you can easily log on to the FTP web space you have been paying monthly for, using the regular FTP address, user name and password (which you would have to enter into Dreamweaver anyway, but only one time) and the files & folders which presently comprise your site appear in their own browser windows and can be clicked & dragged from online storage to local HDD and vice versa. Nothing could be easier but if you have not done manual uploading yet you would have to allow probably a few hours to learn and experiment with this, there are some browser settings to adjust sometimes before it will work, plus firewall considerations, but these are the same bottleneck usually found in web authoring software.  
 
Macromedia is some of the most effective software for web authors to make quick profits once they are fully versed in its wide capabilities, since then an advanced-looking site can be more quickly assembled from the same content which you have painstakingly generated & gathered. But after all the effort involved getting your content ready, doesn't it make sense to persevere and develop an equal stewardship of the *skin* which this content is displayed to the world using? The learning curve is much steeper with Macromedia even compared to manual notepad editing, and no matter how much you learn from Dreamweaver you still are *protected* from benefitting from all the options you would have when you know the basics of manually adding the few HTML tags needed to turn ordinary text into the page of your dreams.  
 
Did I mention never never put anything other than plain HTML on your home page or you will have visitors leave in droves from around the world before you ever knew they were trying to knock on your door?  
 
Mike

 
Replies:
Steve A. Mike said: -- 9/6/2005 8:52 PM