Author Topic: OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website  (Read 16127 times)

Offline Xairbusdriver

  • Administrator
  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 25987
  • 27" iMac (mid-17), Mac mini, both 10.14.6
    • View Profile
    • Mid-South Weather
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #30 on: December 21, 2006, 08:22:33 PM »
QUOTE
...don't happen to agree with XABD...
Oh Kay! Fortunately, I have my database Widget open, so I can quickly add your name...there! Now, I'll simply hit that special key and get back to the rest of my computer...oops, wrong thread! wallbash.gif

Where am I? Oh yeah, extolling the virtues of maniacal fanaticism for standards and the trash that we accept as great design... rant.gif Ah, well, I know a lost cause when I start one! blush-anim-cl.gif

WARNING: html is too difficult for mere human use! Always use a table to lay out your design! It will help keep those geeks employed! You can't set the clocks on your VCRs, either! Surrender now and save your skin! <All your base belong to us!>
I don’t like the fact that my chances of survival seem to be linked to the common sense of others. :Thinking:
CAUTION! Childhood vaccinations cause adults! :yes:

Offline Paddy

  • Administrator
  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 13748
    • View Profile
    • https://www.paddyduncan.com
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #31 on: December 21, 2006, 10:15:34 PM »
Jeepers - go off and wrap Christmas presents for a while and all hell breaks loose. rolleyes.gif

May I remind y'all, that this hand-coding vs. WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) thing is an argument that is right up there with the Mac vs. PC argument. And unlike that argument, there is NO right side.  harhar.gif

Jes kidding...

Anyway, for the most part I'll weigh in on Mayo's side - there is a place for programs like Rapidweaver, and some people have done some very professional-looking sites with it:

http://www.newbodytraining.com/index.html
http://www.soundslikeyou.no/index.html

Like any tool - if you have a good eye for design, you can make it work, and probably faster than if you teach yourself to hand-code from the ground up. There are any number of ways of skinning a cat.

One thing I will agree with Jim (partially) on is the use of CSS. Even the simplest of sites should use it - because it is far, far easier to maintain and to keep things consistent. As he noted - font tags etc. are deprecated. If you want to use a very simple tables-based web site layout, fine. Many, many (perhaps the majority) web sites do. Why? Because that part of CSS is not as well-supported in every browser and bad things can happen. Writing exceptions for non-compliant browsers like IE gets old really quickly and can be difficult. Check the code for just about any large commercial web site and you'll find simple table-based layout. I know - I looked recently because I was curious to see how far things were really going in that direction. However, nailing down everything with nested tables is truly unnecessary - CSS to the rescue there. Of course, if you want to do all-CSS layout that's terrific - just make sure it works in all browsers. If you're doing a single or perhaps simple two-column layout, it should work just fine. Things can get interesting when the layout gets more complicated.

As for web standards - checking your site in the W3C validators, by all means do it and do your best to make things validate. But also be aware that plenty of sites work just fine and don't validate. Tried validating Amazon lately??? You cannot tell me that that site doesn't "work"!!! I'm not making excuses - I'm just pointing out that being doctrinaire about things doesn't necessarily mean that things work better. wink.gif

Bottom line - content is king. Without good content, all the gorgeous web design in the world won't save you from having a bad site. And if the content is displayed well and is easy to navigate, and people want to come back to your site, you're on the right track. biggrin.gif
"If computers get too powerful, we can organize them into committees. That'll do them in." ~Author unknown •iMac 5K, 27" 3.6Ghz i9 (2019) • 15" MBP(2019) 2.4Ghz i9 • 9.7" iPad Pro • iPhone 8

Offline Xairbusdriver

  • Administrator
  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 25987
  • 27" iMac (mid-17), Mac mini, both 10.14.6
    • View Profile
    • Mid-South Weather
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #32 on: December 22, 2006, 02:07:00 PM »
Sorry, I forgot to include some answers to your request for editors to use with html/CSS:
Here's some for Windows...
<From About.com>
<http://www.notetab.com/>
<http://www.editplus.com/>
<http://www.crimsoneditor.com/>
<http://www.fckeditor.net/> ( web-based, any platform )

As for the Mac, my favorite is BBEdit, but BareBones also makes a stripped down ( barely! ) version called <TextWrangler>

All these editors have almost the same features. Mainly they use different colors to indicate tags, content, values, attributes, etc. Most will also indicate when you have correctly closed a tag that needs a closing tag. Some will create line numbers, some will do the validation for you, some insert standard parts of every web page. Some offer ASCII and UTF character palettes for inserting stuff so it's compatible with all browsers. BBEdit has a completely geeky GREP capability that will take years to master! Fortunately, it has a very easy to use Search and Replace window that makes it unnecessary to use GREP for 99% of most work.

The thing these editors have in common is that they make an easy job even easier. smile.gif

I think the hardest part that people seem to have in web design is understanding that a web page is not a piece of paper. It is a fluid medium, you can never guarantee what size window a user will have, much less what the text size and resolution will be. You don't even know what kind of device will be used. Some of these unknowns can be detected and different CSS files can make the site accessible on most any device.

The fact that a major site uses tables is in no way an endorsement of them, IMHO. Many clients have no idea what standards can do, much less why they should be used. They will make sure they are used in their factories, policies and other areas of the business. But when it comes to a web site most simply want it to look good on whatever browser the boss uses. Period.

Dreamweaver, RapidWeaver, WYSIWYG editors are fine, if that's the way you want to go. My point is the reason or excuse simply cannot be because html is too difficult. It's like saying you can't do multiplication because you never went beyond kindergarten, it's possible, but highly unlikely. smile.gif
I don’t like the fact that my chances of survival seem to be linked to the common sense of others. :Thinking:
CAUTION! Childhood vaccinations cause adults! :yes:

Offline Frances144

  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 4691
    • View Profile
    • http://www.myshetland.co.uk
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #33 on: December 23, 2006, 04:10:25 AM »
Well, I made both my websites on iWeb.  I really really tried to get to grips with Rapid Weaver and Dreamweaver and I couldn't, just couldn't.

I am well aware of the limitations of iWeb (building an 82 page website certainly exposes them a little) but if you are willing to work around their templates, it is a very clever, helpful little app.

I am now working a bit with HTML code for odds and sods but at least I am not having to be fluent in it.

Have a look at iWeb - it really is not that bad.  Go and look at my websites - (see sig).

Fx

Offline chriskleeman

  • Administrator
  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 2241
    • View Profile
    • http://www.chriskleeman.com
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #34 on: December 23, 2006, 03:11:13 PM »
QUOTE(Frances144 @ Dec 23 2006, 05:10 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Well, I made both my websites on iWeb.  I really really tried to get to grips with Rapid Weaver and Dreamweaver and I couldn't, just couldn't.

I am well aware of the limitations of iWeb (building an 82 page website certainly exposes them a little) but if you are willing to work around their templates, it is a very clever, helpful little app.

I am now working a bit with HTML code for odds and sods but at least I am not having to be fluent in it.

Have a look at iWeb - it really is not that bad.  Go and look at my websites - (see sig).

Fx


Hi Frances,

Very clean, very useful, elegantly simple, gets the job done for what you need. No bells or whistles, but definitely a much cleaner site than mine. I think cleaning up my text colors would probably go a long way to making it look better... that was my doing anyway, I like lots of color, sort of an anarchist in that regard.

Thanks for reminding me to take a look!

Have a great holiday!

Chris K santagrin.gif
Just a dumb guitar player...
My Website

Offline kps

  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 1693
    • View Profile
    • http://
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #35 on: December 24, 2006, 10:08:14 AM »
Chris,

A great deal depends on what you want out of your website.

If you just want to have a web presence, then it doesn't really matter how it looks as long as you're happy...does it.

If you want it to be a business/professional site, then you and your friend need to work on it a bit more, well maybe a lot more. wink.gif

[begin cruel critique]
Doesn't matter if you hand code the whole thing or spend thousands on web creation software, if the overall design is lacking it'll reflect on you personally. Web audiences can be tougher than your live music audiences. Not to mention booking agents. LOL

You're a great musician, your site should reflect that. Simple, clean, efficient and easy to navigate would be my recommendation.  If you want a more complex site, add a contact form and a 'visual' calendar with your bookings.

You've already been critiqued in individual elements. I'll reiterate what I consider the main flaws of the basic design.

1/ Frames --get rid of them
2/ Multi colored text --use one text color or two at most for standard text content. Links, alinks and vlinks are different and they are global throughout the site.
3/The size and weight of your text is a little bit on the large size.
4/Include a "HOME" menu in navigation.
5/The blue graphic nav buttons do not match the rest of the site.
6/Improve the graphics quality.

[/end cruel critique]

It's actually not all that bad for a first attempt and a work in progress. Look around the web for a musician's site that you like and learn from it. Don't copy it, but do borrow ideas... wink.gif

FWIW, I started hand coding sites in 1996 as a hobby, but the advances in web writing and design have taken major leaps in their effect and complexity. Now I don't have the ambition to hand code anything. Give me a simple to use GUI editor and I'm happy. I tried GoLive, but it's too convoluted and complex, not to mention expensive. DreamWeaver is now owned by Adobe, so I'll lump it in with GoLive. They are both overkill for your needs.

I have RapidWeaver and iWeb, but they're limited in terms of templates (especially iWeb because you can't create custom themes). So anything you create in iWeb will look like everybody else's site created with iWeb. I suppose there's nothing wrong with that, content is 'King" anyway.

Better customization and some other reasons, is why I think you should consider RapidWeaver.
1/ it's fast and cheap...and spits out decent pages with the included themes.
2/ with a little practice you (or your friend) can create custom themes.
3/ better web management of content and uploading than iWeb
4/ offers better integration with outside applications or hand coding than iWeb.
5/ many more third party themes available (free or at cost).

RapidWeaver has one limitation that may affect your choice...it's Mac only.

www.realmacsoftware.com/rapidweaver/

Anyway, Chris, keep working on it. It can actually be fun, so keep having fun.

Offline chriskleeman

  • Administrator
  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 2241
    • View Profile
    • http://www.chriskleeman.com
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #36 on: December 24, 2006, 10:50:17 AM »
QUOTE(kps @ Dec 24 2006, 11:08 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Chris,

A great deal depends on what you want out of your website.

If you just want to have a web presence, then it doesn't really matter how it looks as long as you're happy...does it.

If you want it to be a business/professional site, then you and your friend need to work on it a bit more, well maybe a lot more. wink.gif

[begin cruel critique]
Doesn't matter if you hand code the whole thing or spend thousands on web creation software, if the overall design is lacking it'll reflect on you personally. Web audiences can be tougher than your live music audiences. Not to mention booking agents. LOL

You're a great musician, your site should reflect that. Simple, clean, efficient and easy to navigate would be my recommendation.  If you want a more complex site, add a contact form and a 'visual' calendar with your bookings.

You've already been critiqued in individual elements. I'll reiterate what I consider the main flaws of the basic design.

1/ Frames --get rid of them
2/ Multi colored text --use one text color or two at most for standard text content. Links, alinks and vlinks are different and they are global throughout the site.
3/The size and weight of your text is a little bit on the large size.
4/Include a "HOME" menu in navigation.
5/The blue graphic nav buttons do not match the rest of the site.
6/Improve the graphics quality.

[/end cruel critique]

It's actually not all that bad for a first attempt and a work in progress. Look around the web for a musician's site that you like and learn from it. Don't copy it, but do borrow ideas... wink.gif


Thanks, very constructive criticism indeed. It's funny no-one has found that the fuzzy guitar is the home button... I've talked to my pal about this a few times, and he seems intransigent on the issue. If we continue to have the kind of winter we are having, I'll be basicallly unemployed soon... then I might have time to figure it out for myself!

Thanks, All the best, Seasons' Greetings!

Chris K grinch.gif  santagrin.gif  snowman.gif
Just a dumb guitar player...
My Website

Offline Frances144

  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 4691
    • View Profile
    • http://www.myshetland.co.uk
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #37 on: December 24, 2006, 11:08:14 AM »
QUOTE(kps @ Dec 24 2006, 11:08 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I have RapidWeaver and iWeb, but they're limited in terms of templates (especially iWeb because you can't create custom themes). So anything you create in iWeb will look like everybody else's site created with iWeb. I suppose there's nothing wrong with that, content is 'King" anyway.


Yeah, but as we are constantly being told, no one else in the whole world has an Apple - so one iWeb website compared to all those squillion others out there makes it look unique!

Fx

Offline kps

  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 1693
    • View Profile
    • http://
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #38 on: December 24, 2006, 12:02:07 PM »
Don't take it personally, Frances. Use whatever works for you, after all you're not in the website creation business, you're into ponies and making your videos. One thing at a time...eh? snowman.gif

Offline Frances144

  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 4691
    • View Profile
    • http://www.myshetland.co.uk
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #39 on: December 24, 2006, 12:04:06 PM »
...and tomorrow the world with the help of my new iMac G5 (when I have unpacked it!).

Fx

Offline Xairbusdriver

  • Administrator
  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 25987
  • 27" iMac (mid-17), Mac mini, both 10.14.6
    • View Profile
    • Mid-South Weather
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #40 on: December 24, 2006, 03:23:08 PM »
QUOTE
It's funny no-one has found that the fuzzy guitar is the home button... I've talked to my pal about this a few times, and he seems intransigent on the issue.
That's a great clue that the 'content' is not apparent. If you user can't figure out what something is/does, they probably won't stay around long enough to find out. Various studies suggest that you have less than 30 seconds to 'hook' the viewer. If they don't see the 'fuzzy guitar' as a link, you need to change it, somehow, period. What 'designers' think is soooo kewl, may just be clutter to the normal user. If the site is just for you, do whatever you want, who cares. If you want to attract people's money, pay attention to the details and know what the details are. What we're actually talking about is the consistency of the site, common colors for all states of a link ( does your friend know there are four basic states? ), common font families, sizes, colors ( 3 max ), etc. throughout the site. Common navigation scheme, also.

CSS is the easiest way to do this and you'll be able to dump all the extra, excess tags, values in every paragraph, heading, etc. One file will affect every single page.

I've played with RapidWeaver and tend to agree that it would serve you well, so well, in fact, you may not need the 'services' of your friend! Especially, if he is arguing about 'details' that affect the effectiveness of your site! smile.gif That's the second hardest thing a designer has to do; produce what the 'client' wants, even if it's not what the designer would do! eek2.gif
I don’t like the fact that my chances of survival seem to be linked to the common sense of others. :Thinking:
CAUTION! Childhood vaccinations cause adults! :yes:

Offline jcarter

  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 5808
    • View Profile
    • http://www.jcarter.net/ourdogs/muffinpage.html
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #41 on: December 24, 2006, 03:36:37 PM »
So Rapidweaver gets the vote!?
Is it pretty easy?  I too have GoLive but it was way too complex for me, tho I did make a short site with it.

Also I am signed up for another class starting with HTML, which will advance to XHTML and then CSS.  The first class was not geared to beginners.

It is all fun anyway.
I will let you all know how I progress.
This is a very interesting thread, lots of excellent information here, not only for Chris, but for others(like me) who are learning this stuff.
Jane

Offline Paddy

  • Administrator
  • TS Addict
  • *****
  • Posts: 13748
    • View Profile
    • https://www.paddyduncan.com
OT, sort-of/New, improved (hopefully!) page on my website
« Reply #42 on: December 25, 2006, 11:53:55 AM »
One thing about GoLive and Dreamweaver - while both are powerful, feature-rich programs with steep initial learning curves, once you make the effort, it IS worth it. You can hand code to your heart's content - but there are terrific site management tools at your disposal. As noted, overkill for a simple site, but both provide flexibility and tools that no shareware can match - which is not an indictment of the shareware, just a statement of fact. Lately, I've come to prefer Dreamweaver (though there are a few small things I like better about GoLive, which I HOPE they'll put in the next version of DW!) - particularly as a number of my clients are using Contribute to update their sites, so it is pretty much essential to build the site initially with Dreamweaver.
"If computers get too powerful, we can organize them into committees. That'll do them in." ~Author unknown •iMac 5K, 27" 3.6Ghz i9 (2019) • 15" MBP(2019) 2.4Ghz i9 • 9.7" iPad Pro • iPhone 8