web design 'intermediate' - any suggestions?

  mco 14:36 24 Jan 05

I've designed and run 3 simple websites for people/groups known to me. I've done each one off a template supplied by webhosting company. They are simple but each one's got slightly more advanced as I've worked out how to do more. I'm at the stage where I'd like to go beyond simple adaptation of templates; I'd like to do cleverer, jazzier stuff but either I don't have the knowledge or else the template won't allow it. Can anyone suggest a book/dc/online link for me, just a bit above 'beginner' level but trying to extend their skills?

  Talented Monkey 16:56 24 Jan 05

If you are going to do anything properly and competently, then its best to learn all the hows and whys and theory, be it music, quantum physics, mechanics, or fly fishing.

Same goes for web development/design its all very well being able to use templates etc, but you should really learn HTML. By learning HTML you will be able to understand how webpages work, what the code actually means and most important be able to write code yourself or just tweak code produced by FrontPage etc.

Good starting point to learn HTML are these resources webmonkey ( no connection to me ) click here
W3schools click here
Web developers library click here

Of course you don’t have to learn HTML, you can simply purchase frotnpage and off you go without having to learn anything , however this is ok for hobbyist and running the odd club or personal webpages, but for anything serious such as starting a business or wanting more flexibility over what the package produces, then learn HTML

  mco 19:25 24 Jan 05

Many thanks; that's exactly the sort of info I wanted. I think learning HTML is going to be my next step. (At a quick glance btw it reminds me of how I used to alter script on the old BBC B's wp system which I grew up with)I don't want to use others' templates any more; for my own satisfaction I want to know what I'm creating.

  Forum Editor 19:50 24 Jan 05

that FrontPage is "ok for hobbyist and running the odd club or personal webpages" because that's far from being the case.

The latest version of FrontPage is a very powerful and capable program indeed, and is easily as good as DreamWeaver - in fact in some areas (notably data-driven sites) it's much better. FrontPage can do anything that any other web design package can do, and to be perfectly frank very few professional web-designers hand-code sites these days. With modern WYSIWYG web-design software you can do in ten minutes what would take all day if you were hand-coding.

That's not to say that HTML hand-coding isn't a very useful skill to acquire - it certainly is, and I often use it to tweak the code I've created in WYSIWYG software - but it isn't essential, you can create very professional sites in FrontPage, or DreamWeaver, or NetObjects Fusion.

  Talented Monkey 21:18 24 Jan 05

what i was trying to say is that running FrontPAge WITHOUT any HTML or basic knowledge is ok for hobbist etc, but if you want to do things a bit more professionally then you will need to learn html and have an understanding of HTML, otherwise you will be in difficulty if you need to tweak or edit somting that Frontpage or indeed dreamweaver

  Gaz 25 23:14 24 Jan 05

Correct. I use dreamweaver, nvu all the time, but hand code is also important.

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