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28 messages

Tech: website building

12 Apr 01 - 03:55 PM (#439244)
Subject: website building
From: Mike Byers

I was wondering what Mudcatters might have to say regarding good software for building websites. I fell into a deal for almost-unlimited bandwidth, and would like to re-work my website to take advantage of this. I used manual HTML editing to make my first website, but I'd like to try some of the WYSIWYG programs this time in order to get some of the nifty effects I'm not clever enough to figure out on my own. I've heard good things about Dreamweaver/Fireworks and Front Page, but to tell the truth, their prices are beyond me. Does anyone know of any good freeware that might be available? BTW, I joined Mudcat some time ago, but since I have a thing about cookies or anything else that I don't put on my HD myself (probably a holdover from the days of having a 40MB HD the size of a small dog) I now and then forget my "cookie duster" routine cleans out the cookies and I show up as "guest". But even as "guest", I'm still the same old booger I always was...

12 Apr 01 - 04:11 PM (#439255)
Subject: RE: website building
From: MMario

Who do you expect to browse the website? Remember - THEY may not have unlimited bandwidth!

I would say the biggest downfall of web-sites is that many of the developers of the page forget this!

12 Apr 01 - 04:28 PM (#439269)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Bert

If you want something free, then try Perl5. I just bought a copy of "Web Programming with Perl5", put out by I'll let you know in a week or so if it is any good.

12 Apr 01 - 05:53 PM (#439329)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Mr Red

I use Excel, Word (as a text editor under macros) and Notepad. If I can do it in HTML it will appear as intended on most browsers.
like my library who are paranoic about access and viruses, IE3 users, and who knows what browsers.
my website ( doesn't look flash but is a purveyor of information not a showpiece for my skills with programs that do it all for you anyway.
Ask yourself what does your website do for you. AND what is it doing for the intended audience. The tools will suggest themselves after that.
I find a lot of technical sites assume you have loaded "Flash" and Javascript is running in IE5 and you can't get at the right pages without it.
My company's policies preclude some of these things.

12 Apr 01 - 07:54 PM (#439397)
Subject: RE: website building
From: hesperis

Not WYSIWYG, but a great little editor, is Arachnophilia. It's my favorite when I'm not using notepad - and best of all, it's not just free, it's Careware!

13 Apr 01 - 12:25 AM (#439529)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Mountain Dog

Hesperis is right; Arachnophilia is a very handy editor and I like Paul Lutus' concept of "Careware"

Another free editor worth checking out is 1st Page from an Australian company Evrsoft.

For other options, check the Nonags site here and look at their collection of free HTML tools, including a number of WYSIWYG programs.

13 Apr 01 - 12:35 AM (#439542)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Mountain Dog

Hmm. Apologies for wretched HTML usage in that post! Don't even bother clicking on the blue clicky or trying to figure out where my fractured sentence was going! (That'll learn me t'trust to my own typing rather than using an HTML editor...)

1st Page is available from Evrsoft at

For other no-cost options in HTML editors, you can go to and look into many of the free tools available through their site.

Good luck (he muttered sheepishly while fumbling through his not-sufficiently dog-eared HTML reference books...)

"Wretched" HTML in previous post fixed (missing closing quotes) - JoeClone.

13 Apr 01 - 08:35 AM (#439661)
Subject: RE: website building
From: John P

I've been putting together a web site using Dreamweaver. VERY easy. You don't have to know anything about coding html. But the code is all easily available if you want to go in and change things that way.


13 Apr 01 - 03:07 PM (#439944)
Subject: RE: website building
From: GUEST,Seth


If you'd read the original message you'd have noticed that Mike can't afford Dreamweaver, and was asking for alternatives...


He wasn't really asking to learn a new programming language, was he???

Oh well....


I'd certainly agree with Mountain Dog's recommendations. If you know some html 1st Page 2000" is superb, especially as it's free.

MMario makes a very good point regarding bandwidth. It's the end user who needs to be written for.

I'm not entirely sure what you want to do, in terms of taking advantage of 'unlimited' bandwidth, do you want to make a site with Flash, have loads of javascripts, run a Coldfusion database or what?

If you can be more specific, i'd be happy to help.


13 Apr 01 - 03:21 PM (#439950)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Blackcatter

I have been thinking of puting a questionairre on my site that visitors would fill out and recieve an interpretation back. Any ideas on software out there that'll do that. I'm using Frontpage right now but that's beyond its capabilities and I'm not a programmer.


13 Apr 01 - 03:23 PM (#439951)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Cobble

Can anyone recomend free software for building a site on my Mac G4.

Your's in great expectation Cobble.

13 Apr 01 - 03:27 PM (#439955)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Deni

There are lots of magazines around like WEb pages made Easy, which have free sorftware, some full, some WYSIWYG.

Good luck.

13 Apr 01 - 03:42 PM (#439962)
Subject: RE: website building
From: GUEST,Seth

Blackcatter and Cobble both.

Can you provide a bit more information on what you'd like to do?

The answers are myriad otherwise.

Hoping to help


13 Apr 01 - 03:50 PM (#439970)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Cobble

Just to give you an idea Seth Mrs C would like a site for dogs we show Skye Terrier's, and I would like to extend the site later for my own interest's Folk music and digital photography, any idea's? and thank you for your interest.


13 Apr 01 - 04:02 PM (#439976)
Subject: RE: website building
From: GUEST,Seth


My guess is that you just want a simple set of pages.

As such you don't need any extra software. If you have the time and/or inclination, learning HTML would be the starting point. There are lots of books around and numerous web sites.

My current favourite for beginners is Work through the tutorials, and you'll have a site fairly quickly.

If that sounds like too much work, try somewhere like where you can follow a 'wizard' to get a site.

I would however stress that building a decent website involves understanding a few different pieces of software and isn't as easy as writing something in a word-processor.


13 Apr 01 - 04:11 PM (#439980)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Jon Freeman

Mike, if free and WYSIWYG are the requirements, I would use Front Page Express.


13 Apr 01 - 04:19 PM (#439986)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Cobble

Thank's Seth.


13 Apr 01 - 04:20 PM (#439990)
Subject: RE: website building
From: GUEST,Seth


It should be remembered that WYSIWYG is an oxymoron as far as web design is concerned.

You might get what you see, but the vast majority of your audience will (in varying degrees) see it differently.


But if you want to go down that route - Netscape Composer is to my mind a lot better than Frontpage Express

13 Apr 01 - 04:58 PM (#440009)
Subject: RE: website building
From: GUEST,Jeff

Sorry for being dumb. But what does oxymoran mean? and why does it affect my web page?


13 Apr 01 - 09:15 PM (#440152)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Geoff the Duck

To quote our copy of the Concise Oxford English Dictionary
Oxymoron "Figure of speech with pointed conjunctions of seemingly contradictory expressions.
Still none the wiser!!!

13 Apr 01 - 09:28 PM (#440158)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Jon Freeman

OK, WYSIWYG = What you see is what you get but browsers don't display HTML the same.

Personally, I like getting a basic layout with Front Page Express - close enough for the simple (and very occasional) stuff I do.

BTW, One big drawback with WYSIWYG editors is they add a lot of unneccesary HTML.


14 Apr 01 - 06:09 AM (#440323)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Blackcatter

Hi there all

Seth - what I'd like to add to my site is probably in the realm of CGI. What I want to do is create a form with basically yes/no questions (which I can do in FrontPage, of course) but instead of the info just going to a file for me to read, I'd like to be able to have a program take the answers and add up all the yes/nos and be able to give an interpretation back to the person who filled out the questionairre.

I have in mind a simple and fun personality test, on the order of Meyers-Briggs that I have been using with some success for the past couple years. I give it to friends, but I'd like to put it on the Net.

If I can figure out how to do it correctly, I can have a program tally up the responses and give the person their personality type "in real time," without me having to tabulate the questions myself.

It it quite possible that this is beyond the scope of anything but an expensive program, but I'm curious to see if it is possible.

pax yall

Thanks to all for all the info being shared above as well!

14 Apr 01 - 09:27 AM (#440369)
Subject: RE: website building
From: GUEST,Rana


This is doesn't answer the original question but coincidentally I was looking at getting web stuff for work. Since it seems you might know stuff, I'll address this to you (though others may also know). It seems appropriate to put it here, as opposed to starting a new thread.

Need to set up something fairly fancy for work - something that describes my lab, what we can do, technique description and maybe short tutorials, and more. Since I have some time to do this, I want to do this myself - I believe it will be more effective and get across what I want rather than if I farmed it out.

In the last few days, I've asked around. Frontpage has been discarded almost immediately. HomeLife has been recommended (as learn the code yourself). GoLive has also been mentioned but Dreamweaver seems to have the edge.

Finally the question - there is Dreamweaver 4 ((CAN)$165 - educational price)and with Fireworks 4 ((CAN) $240). But what does Fireworks actually do, would I need it (find it useful) or is it overkill?

Trust others don't mind my asking - from the blurb given, it is not clear to me - also glanced at the web3 site which looked very useful.

Regards Rana

14 Apr 01 - 10:08 AM (#440383)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Mary in Kentucky

Mike - I made my first website with Microsoft Publisher because it was loaned to me. It got me started, but as Jon says, it adds a lot of unnecessary HTML. Also, I found updating and making changes hard to do (possibly because I didn't understand the code). For design purposes I found understanding tables to be the most helpful trick.

Cobble - I wanted to do my own graphics, especially reduce the size of pictures and play with I finally broke down and bought Paint Shop Pro (~$70). Haven't regretted it. If you're putting lots of pictures (I personally have Yorkies!) I would suggest thumbnails on one page and then a link to the larger picture. You can adjust all these pictures with a graphics program. Also with the digital camera you can save the pictures various sizes. I read somewhere what the best size for web viewing was. As far as folk music...copy Barry Taylor's code! ;-) NOT HIS WONDERFUL SITE THOUGH!

Blackcatter - Can't help you, but I'm interested in your answers. I thought CGI scripts depended on what you ISP provided.????? I would just write my ISP folks and ask them. As far as the personality test, I've seen them on the web with instantaneous feedback. If you need a link, I'll find it.

Does anyone know of a good JavaScipt tutorial, and is it a good thing to know in addition to HTML?


14 Apr 01 - 10:52 AM (#440404)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Bernard

Oxymoron examples: Exquisite pain

Dazzling darkness

14 Apr 01 - 11:02 AM (#440410)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Mike Byers

Thanks for the useful info; this will get me going in the right direction. My goal (despite the unlimited bandwidth) is to make a clean and fast-loading website, as I've seen plenty that were interesting but almost unusable with a 24K connection like mine. I'll have some photos of glasswork (thumbnails with links to larger images) as well as graphics and text. My current website ( will give you an idea of what I'm looking to do, but naturally I want this one to be better and more interesting. Depending upon how things work out, I might add some music; the website will be for Raven Glass Studio, but if I can, I want some room for "playing around" stuff, too. I've found a better way to get photos and slides turned into .jpgs and, with the information you good people have given me, I should be able to come up with what I want. Once again, the mighty Mudcat comes through--much appreciated!

14 Apr 01 - 03:34 PM (#440598)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Blackcatter

Ok - here's a question brought up by Mike's previous post. Music on a site: the kind that automatically loads had plays while you view the site - what do you all think?

I personally abhore it for various reasons - the most important to me is that the quality is usually no where near what I want to ever listen to. I am also usually listiening to my stereo or have the news on and it becomes an unwanted distraction.

I appreciate the sites who offer you the choice by providing a clicky-thing to load up their music if you want to hear it.

What do you all think?

14 Apr 01 - 03:53 PM (#440604)
Subject: RE: website building
From: Mike Byers

Since I've had some experience with Real Player and Real Producer (.rm files) and the software to use these is available for free, I'll use this and the clicky-thing if I decide to go for music. Blackcatter's got a good point about music that plays whether you want it or not; giving people a choice is better I believe. And no, I don't plan to use anyone else's copyrighted material, either. If you click on my clicky-thing, you'll get my stuff which means I'd probably need to put up a warning, too...