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  • What web design software do you use?

    Hi guys,

    I'm looking for some advice on website design for clients. I'm not long into the industry and have heard that Dreamweaver isn't great in terms of being fussy to use and writing messy code. I've had BlueVoda recommended to me as intuitive for the designer and easy for the client to download and edit their own site afterwards since most of them are on PCs. It also provides its own hosting. I'm on a Mac though so I can't really use it. I've recently been interested in exploring WordPress as a good all-rounder and will be looking into it soon.

    Basically I'm searching for a program to work with that's going to give me as much freedom as possible. That's in terms of the design process and hand over to the client should they want to content manage it themselves.

    Any suggestions or recommendations would be helpful or if anyone's written any articles on this topic I'd appreciate a link. Pros and cons you can think of around any of the software would be welcome too.


  • #2
    Hi there
    We use adobe Creative Suite and yes it is hard to learn from scratch but when you have its the best web package you can buy,

    We use
    Adobe Dreamweaver - Web site editing/making and also ftp to our sites,
    Adobe Firefox - For editing web images
    Adobe Photoshop - For editing photos to a high standard
    Adobe Flash - For out flash websites and flash apps
    Adobe Premiere - For our video editing
    Adobe Audition - For audio editing

    There is also a lot of other adobe products but we have found that the above products are all we have ever needed,

    hope this helps a little


    • #3
      Originally posted by LSoneCREATIVE View Post
      Hi there

      Adobe Firefox - For editing web images
      Number 1. Firefox is not a product of Adobe.
      Number 2. Who uses a web browser to edit images?


      • #4
        Originally posted by MAK View Post
        Number 1. Firefox is not a product of Adobe.
        Number 2. Who uses a web browser to edit images?
        I'm sure they meant Fireworks.


        • #5
          Design: Photoshop or Illustrator
          Development: BBEdit + CSSEdit


          • #6
            I just started using TextWrangler for writing code...its not a bad free tool.

            DW won't make good sites, you will. BEST to learn to WRITE HTML and CSS and then use whatever software you are most comfortable with. I use DW and TextWrangler and a good FTP program these days for most of my web dev...and the CS4 suite for design. But honestly, you are a useless web designer if you do not know how to code because you more often than not need to go back and change/fix what the WYSIWYG programs spit out. You would be doing a disservice to your clients if you don't know your stuff. Photoshop is great for the concept, but for implementation you have to know how to code. Took me a few years to realize that in the 90's but it was well worth teaching myself to code.

            As for content management....that's dynamic...and is a different topic all together...first learn to design sites in html. Baby steps!
            Last edited by DesignVHL; 07-07-2009, 08:12 PM.
            | Valerie |
            "Make sure the fortune that you seek is the fortune that you need"
            -Ben Harper


            • #7
              obviously learning the actual code will better benefit you more in the long run. If you don't enjoy code there is always Freeway Pro. I'm sure the code is not the cleanest but it is easy to learn (especially for designers who have worked with Indesign) and let's you focus more the design.


              • #8
                Dreamweaver creates sloppy code if you use the WYSIWYG. If you actually code the code, your code will be just fine.

                I use Coda on my Mac for coding my sites at home. While we use a combination of Dreamweaver and Visual Studio at work on PCs.
                Professional Pixel Pusher Designing the world around you. | Working daily to reach 10,000 hours of practice.


                • #9
                  never heard of Coda, will have to check that out...

                  You can use the DW code view to write code too. DW definitely has it's purposes though and the best thing to use, is what you are most comfortable and happy long as the end result is good: clean code, accessible site, great SEO, decent validation, meet clients needs, works in the browsers it needs to, etc. that's what counts!
                  | Valerie |
                  "Make sure the fortune that you seek is the fortune that you need"
                  -Ben Harper


                  • #10
                    My friend has Coda and loves it.

                    I use DW and write my own code. It's nice because it auto completes tags and fills in div id's for you once you've linked your stylesheet(s).

                    I'd strongly recommend learning html (then after, css), because any WYSIWYG editor is going to give you sloppy code.


                    • #11
                      Yeah that is why I like writing my code in DW mostly too..I always try other editors and end up going back to it. But for editing PHP files and CSS even I've been diggin Text Wrangler..but I am definitely up for giving Coda a test run too. The auto completes can be great - esp for someone new to coding - the hints can be really helpful, and even a time saver when it comes to typing out certain things for sure.
                      | Valerie |
                      "Make sure the fortune that you seek is the fortune that you need"
                      -Ben Harper


                      • #12
                        Dreamweaver's great, and I mostly use that.

                        But I always have a decent, basic text editor (Text Wrangler is my current preference on the Mac) available, because sometimes it just isn't worth waiting for Dreamweaver to start up


                        • #13
                          I've found that Dashcode (the development coding program to make Mac apps) starts up in just seconds and does a great job at color-coding different classes, tags, and plays nice with html and css, so I use that.

                          I think it comes on the mac os x install cd, but I'm pretty sure I downloaded it during my mac game design stint


                          • #14
                            The standards are open, all you need is a text-editor. Your clients shouldn't have to touch the code on their own, ever. Its your job to create them a CMS which they can use, to make needed modifications.

                            I would recommend that you use a normal text editor for smaller projects. And a editor which includes syntax highlighting for bigger projects.

                            Photoshop should NEVER be used to generate code. Its a grapichs editor, which we can use to create Buttons, backgrounds, borders, headers. ETC. You don't want it to tuch your code.

                            I don't recommend that you use existing CMS solutions, or blogs like wordpress, because these solutions are free to begin with. You have no right to offer these as CMS solutions, your clients may as well install them on their own.


                            • #15
                              I don't agree w/ your last statement Tower. If my clients COULD install it on their own, update the graphics and put the content in there, that would be one thing...but they can't and don't want they pay me to implement. It is ridiculous to think they can do that on their own - if they could they would. They are FREE because its an open-source on-going project. We work hard to customize and add to it that a normal user couldn't.

                              I MOST DEFINITELY do not charge as much to setup a WP site as I would a custom CMS solution (my webhost wrote his own that I use once in a while). Not all of us are PHP programmers to be able to create our own solutions....that is why those CMS's were created. One web dev I work with uses Expression Engine for every site and they have done well over 200 - and their clients pay the licensing and setup fees. They get a custom site design to use with this out of the box cms solution. I just do not see anything wrong with that.

                              WP is a great low cost solution for clients with small budgets. It may not be the best software in the world (my host thinks it is a piece of utter crap and hates when i install it on his servers, but he lets me). I'd prefer to be using EE if clients can afford it.
                              Last edited by DesignVHL; 07-09-2009, 04:27 PM.
                              | Valerie |
                              "Make sure the fortune that you seek is the fortune that you need"
                              -Ben Harper


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