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Old 06-22-2011, 09:47 PM   #1
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Exclamation Website Building Tips

So I have previously used homestead builder and it worked very well. It was a program you download to build the website and they host the domain name and everything. However this time around I am trying something different. I have godaddy hosting my domain name, but I am wondering what a good program to use to build the site is? Take in mind I have very little html experience, might as well say none, but I can learn a little if I need to. Any advice?
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Old 06-22-2011, 11:04 PM   #2
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Download version 1.3... study the css structure and read the explainations.... one of the best on the web. If you can get this down, you are there.... if you can understand it, replicate it, etc... All those books and other sites made sense after I followed this.

http://www.zap.org.au/documents/styles/sinorcaish/

Of course: http://www.w3schools.com/

Study the examples here: http://www.oswd.org/


http://reference.sitepoint.com/css

http://www.yourhtmlsource.com/stylesheets/

http://www.brainbell.com/tutorials/HTML_and_CSS/

I guess you could also move on to some books, if you want.

My books sit on the shelf since I can normally find examples of what I need/want, instead of trying to make something in a book fit my need.

I use Microsoft Expression Web 4 mostly... it works great. Others like to use Adobe Dreamweaver... IMO, either is fine, I have both... but use Expression Web.

http://www.microsoft.com/expression/..._overview.aspx

I was using frontpage, then learned enough to move on to notepad... then dreamweaver.... now expression web.

For my forms, I use http://www.tectite.com/formmailpage.php ... this simply can't be beat as well....

If you download expression web or dreamweaver and want it to build a site for you, good luck. You need to learn css first (or at the same time) as using those products.

You will have to get into the code every now and again... I use straight code for many things, simply because it is cleaner IMO. I like design view because it quickly shows you how things are setup.
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Old 06-24-2011, 07:50 AM   #3
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hey thanks for the information very much appreciated it!
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Old 06-24-2011, 08:03 AM   #4
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good links thanks
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Old 06-25-2011, 11:59 PM   #5
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http://www.quackit.com/css/

http://csslint.net/

Two more I found tonight... so many free resources.
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Old 06-26-2011, 01:51 AM   #6
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W3schools and Wordpress?

There are quite a few pre-made templates/themes for Wordpress, and a few really good ones that are highly customizable. You almost don't need to customize any code.

I frequent the tutorials and linked sites from W3schools when doing code-y exploring of my own.
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Old 06-26-2011, 06:32 PM   #7
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Unless you have a graphic editor on staff, you will have to edit some light pictures or maybe build some graphics. Easy to remember .gif for graphics, jpg for pictures (not 100% but it will get you there... I'll let someone else type the exceptions, etc part).

For graphic work, I use Free paint, by paintdotnet. www.getpaint.net/ -- it is wonderful...

I also use photoshop and fireworks (both adobe programs) for special projects. PaintDotNet is fast, easy, and gets results... for free. I am not a graphic artist.

I have photoshop because all the real graphic artists I hire use the program... if something is too complex, I call in the big gun from places like elance, guru, freelance, getcoder, etc.

Oh, and I use Banner Maker Pro for my banner needs. Best $40 I've spent. http://www.bannermakerpro.com

As the title suggests, it is used for making banners (but can be used for other graphic work). Normally I build a graphic in paintdotnet then drop that into banner make pro, if there are things that I need (animations, etc). If I don't need special stuff, I work in paintdotnet... although, bannermake pro makes it easier to change the shape and add effects, etc. How I use these programs depends on the project.

You will save time and money, if you can do some simple graphics work on your own.

Here are a couple more links... you may also find yourself developing fonts.

If you need a special font for a program, always ensure you have a written note from the developer, if the font is "free" (if you are working on a business program). I have a file of copyright requests... you would be surprised at the number of devs who simply say "yes" and "thanks for asking". A small % say no, but you don't want to deal with them in court years later. (Maybe I'm going a bit far, I have you in business already, but you get the picture... don't build a site with illegal pictures, etc... while you more than likely won't have trouble, it is not worth the pain, if you do.)

Find resources you visit once a week... like http://www.smashingmagazine.com . Some of their most useful posts in the last couple of months:

Planning And Implementing Website Navigation
http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2011...te-navigation/

A Comprehensive Website Planning Guide
http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2011...lanning-guide/

Useful HTML-, CSS- and JavaScript Tools and Libraries
http://coding.smashingmagazine.com/2...and-libraries/

Fonts (this is an old post from 07 that I still use... yes, you will have to learn about fonts as well... crazy what a small web developer needs to know about):
http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2007...sional-design/
and http://www.freewarefonts.com/index.html
You can also develop your own fonts... I've done that in the past for a very special project.

Oh, and you need to know about colors... I have a color wheel over my desk. Yes, that elementry school thing that you forgot about. Primary, secondary colors, etc... lol

Any site will do... sure there are tons of great sites to teach color. I printed and use a color wheel and I'm good. I normally get into colors when I start a new project. Learn about RGB.

Google "color wheel" and print one of the color wheels...

Unless you have a graphic artist on staff, I think most need to know at least the basics... Know how colors might impact your site. Know the primary, secondary, etc colors.

Like this: http://www.infocellar.com/hardware/p...l-additive.gif

You can also visit sites like this one: http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/f...on/design.html

http://colorschemedesigner.com/

http://www.tayloredmktg.com/rgb/ (colors for your code)
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Last edited by theog; 06-26-2011 at 06:35 PM.
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Old 06-26-2011, 08:52 PM   #8
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Hey thanks for all the information I really appreciate it.
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Old 06-26-2011, 09:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigchico68 View Post
Hey thanks for all the information I really appreciate it.
I have this thing for colors: http://fc08.deviantart.net/fs26/f/20...by_yashima.jpg

Color and navigation...

Anyway, thank you for asking the question... I'm giving a class again (maybe) next month and needed the little jolt to get back on track. So much new material out there... internet is crazy... so much knowledge.

I've only posted the basic stuff for website building... some of the other stuff includes SEO, monetizing (selling something), website marketing.... heck, some don't even know how to purchase a domain or how to battle spammers/hackers or what to do if they receive a nasty legal letter.

Then maintenance and keeping your site relevant.

All of this stuff is why some hang it up and go with something like wordpress or another content management system/blog, or maybe facebook, or even twitter. I've seen twitter used with a static site (read: never, ever updated), and it worked.

It always starts out... "I want a simple family site... nothing more." Wait, those colors are blinding me... how do I add pictures from our trip (No, I don't want to use another site), video, or contact script, search, newsletter, etc, etc...

Good luck to you.
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Old 06-27-2011, 11:15 AM   #10
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A few other software options:

"photoshopping": Gimp
Vector art: Inkscape
General doodling: MyPaint
a good text/code editor with syntax highlighting and ftp plugin: Notepad++

All these are open source and mostly compatible with common retail product file types.

Honorable mention:
Vectormagic - an online service that lets you upload a bmp or other pixel-based image and converts it to a vector image. There are many payment options, my favorite is 1 month for $10, I believe.
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