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Thread: Website Design

  1. #1
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    Website Design

    Hi there,

    I am thinking about redoing my website, but I am a bit hesitant on which way I should go when it comes to the editor. I noticed that some artists (Hpx1, Sparth, and others ) are using PHP softwares (like coppermine). And it seems to do a lot of the work for you PLUS keeping track of website image surfing (number of hits per image), thumbnail creations and so on, which is ver ymuch what I am looking for.

    Most of my friends on another side are using Dreamweaver, but in a way I'd rather have a pretty minimalistic look to my site, to keep the surfing optimized.
    Until now I have been using frontpage, which is very basic, but I was happy about it until now.

    Please Helllp! I need some advice.

    Vyle / David


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  3. #2
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    I rely on flash a lot since it keeps the quality of the images and keep it from exceeding scary files sizes..it saves you a lot of time doing a lot of the tedious programming...

  4. #3
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    I like Sparth's website quite a bit. It looks professional, and if it's easy to create then all the better!
    I personally have the most experience using Adobe GoLive. I found it a bit more user-friendly than Dreamweaver (but that's just my opinion ).

    emily

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    Okay this may be a stupid question but I'll ask it anyway. Insane visions, if your using flash for the website have you ever experienced any problems with people using the site, maintenance, bandwidth?

    Basically I'm wondering why you prefer flash over plain HTML? I'm doing a new website in a few weeks just wondering wich way to go.
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    I wouldn't recommend doing an entire website in Flash, but instead using flash components within the site.

    I strickley use GOlive for my webdesign software, mainly because I use photoshop and imageready for the design development. All three of the ADOBE programs know when they are opened and you can bounce a photoshop.psd between them while editing your mouseovers, guidelines, slices to the site.

    I believe the most important thing is to make sure the site works on a handful of browsers. Firefox, Netscape, and IE or good ones to test it on.
    skinns
    Skinwerks Tattoo & Design

    "Use your emotions to think, but don't think with your emotions"

  7. #6
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    Insane, do you have a website??? If yes tell me I'll put you on my links riiiiight away

    Nice website skinwerks, using GO live then?

    Hmm, I see, well, what sounds great about coppermine (btw here is the link: http://coppermine.sourceforge.net/
    ) is the fact you can track details on your website very easily, and dealing with a lot of images can be a pain in the butt to update when you have to create thumbnails.

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    I'd use GoLive as well. Very easy to use, very fast IMHO.

    As tu enmenage a Dallas?
    Si c'est le cas on devrait faire qqchose ensemble, il m'a semble qu'on avait bien accroche pendant le workshop. Je pourrais te donner un coup de main avec ton site si tu veux.

    Anyway, let me know...
    -Roma
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    www.art-roma.com

  9. #8
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    Go live, ok, that might be the way then, I am going to check it out. Although I am still interested by the coppermine route, as it offers more site tracking...

    Sorry guys, french ahead
    Hey Roma! Wasssup! Content de te voir online. Je viens de finir d'mmenager a Dallas, tu as raison on devrait essayer de se voir. Contacte moi comme ca j'aurai ton adresse.
    Mon adresse email: vylewind@yahoo.com

  10. #9
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    Between Go Live and Dreamweaver, I think it's just a matter off what you're used to. They can pretty much both do the same things. I prefer Dreamweaver myself, but I've been using it for a couple of years. They both add a lot of unncessary stuff to your html though. I've just been using a text editor lately (EditPlus).

    Hmm...I guess I wasn't that much help.
    Last edited by Groover McNab; September 15th, 2004 at 06:56 PM.

  11. #10
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    GoLive, DreamWeaver, Frontpage, etc. all generate HTML of some sort. You basically use them to throw together a design without having to type it in yourself. They can probably handle some inline PHP as well, but I doubt it will be easy. This is a neat choice if you don't know HTML and if you don't have the time or will to learn.

    If you do know HTML, or want to learn, you can create your site using any text editor. Throw in some PHP as well if you want to...if you know a little bit about how http works and you know the basics of programming, it should be easy. You can find all documentation over at php.net (and mysql.com if you want to store some stuff - like stats - in a database).

    Software like coppermine will save you a lot of work, and if you like it I can't see why you shouldn't use it
    In the end...the choice have to be based on your skills (use a WYSIWYG program like DreamWeaver if you don't know HTML?), how you want the site to work vs. how much time you have (write your own stats stuff or go with something someone has already written?), how you want to update the site (use a content management system of some sort and just edit or create new pages online, or edit / create new in your editor and upload them to the server), etc...

    I hope that made some sense. Good luck!

  12. #11
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    hey vyle!

    pontemonti is damn right. coppermine or menalto's gallery are two php modules that, once installed, will do all the enduring stuff for you.
    for my site, (and i know nothing about php really), i installed coppermine gallery. i wanted to install menalto but on the server side it is sometimes impossible to install that sort of module. so you've got to check first if your host is allowing you to install menalto. if not, coppermine will be the other alternative. (do a google search for both sites)

    once installed, i took a skin that was close to what i wanted. and i tweaked and fixed it until i obtained what i wanted. hpx helped me a little bit for some damn features, but i can promise you that you are not forced to know anything about php in order to make your own. you just have to open a few scripts and change a few numbers, and also create your own set of gifs (icons) by borrowing the gifs from a previous skin.

    once it is installed correctly (probably the tuffest part), everything should work fine. afterwards, you can control everything from a configuration pannel. and enjoy a pleasant updating. forget html!

    sparth

  13. #12
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    I use Photoshop for the mock up and design as well as slicing everything up. I also use Photoshop for image rollovers and other special F/X.

    Php is good if you are doing a shopping cart system. I coded this site http://www.immortalclothing.com/ in php. I also designed it and help photo shoots with the models.

    I also like ASP it is much easier to work with and it’s supported by all the servers.

    Never use Golive or Front page. They are the worst when it comes to coding. Always use Homesite for hard code and Dreamweaver for visuals.

    Nver use flash. Not eveyone has it and its also a waste of time if not done right.

    well hope that helps.
    -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --

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    Well Vyle. Now you have gotten everybodys opionions on which route to go regarding webdesign development. So now I think you need to answer yourself some questions:

    Do you want to make a living offer webdesign services in the future (lots of money, all profit), than I would go with a Industry Standard like Golive or Dreamweaver.

    Or would you rather not have the hassle and just learn enough to maintain your site as needed? Then I would go with something a little less indepth like coppermine.

    Of course there are disavantages and advantages to being a webdesigner.

    Some advantages that I have experienced
    1.
    $800 - $2500 extra dollars that you can make on raining days.
    2. As you build a client base you are also create self-promotion.
    3. Returning Clients
    4. The more sites you do, the better your Graphic Design skills get.

    Some disavantages that I have experienced
    1.
    Your OWN fine arts portfolio gets put on the back burner. Instead of having 12 drawings at the end of the year, you now only have 5.
    2. Responsible for making the site work on most web browsers (netscape, IE, Firefox). Which is a headache.
    3. Usually the client consist of 2 or more people. So now there is a committee that critiques the site, and they ALL want to see there ideas incorporated.

    Skinns
    skinns
    Skinwerks Tattoo & Design

    "Use your emotions to think, but don't think with your emotions"

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    I doubt that the majority of browsers doesnt carry flash plug-ins and what kind of game or design company owns out of date machines? I find flash very useful and as years gradually passes by new updates to the software enables you to explore more creative ideas.....I apologize for having this argument, but the only computers that I find that wouldnt be able to load flash is those ancient ones and why the fuck will they browse someones portfolio anyways? it obviously states that they dont give a hoot on browsing the NET if they have obsolete machines...I find php and asp useful as an external script to communicate with flash..Im not bias in any ways I like static sites too, but I find it irritating when people say "NEVER USE FLASH" cause you havent given them a chance to explore the software let alone judge it for themselves.. flash is a good marketing tool and the rich designs and content you can get is endless..you can do soo many things with it like implementing 3d animation, it protects your images from being saved unless you want them to, embed video straight on flash using the sorenson codec, add music and a whole lot more....its the modern era, lets move forward....I know what Im talking about so defending my point of view on flash is SOLID!....

    Vyle: if you want to know more about it ,need tips or help, PM me and Ill glady take the time to help you with it...
    Last edited by insane visions; September 16th, 2004 at 01:19 PM.

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    Nicely put INSANE.

    Its the next thing on my plate to learn for me. Once I get my hands on that I have just given myself a PAYRAISE.
    skinns
    Skinwerks Tattoo & Design

    "Use your emotions to think, but don't think with your emotions"

  17. #16
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    I don't understand this weird anti-flash sentiment people have. I think the backlash started when it was still "new" and everybody was making these long intros that take a while to download. But if you know what you're doing, obviously that can be easily avoided, and if you know your audience/clientele making a website completely in flash is definitely a viable choice. Unless your audience is 60 yr old amish paraplegics (which I highly doubt), most people do have the flash plugin. I mean for most higher end web design jobs, employers won't even talk to you if you don't have any flash experience. So yeah, IV hit the nail on the head. All you anti-flash people need to get with the times.

    Here are some very well designed, completely flash sites (this is not a plug, I'm in no way affiliated with any of these people, just sharing).

    http://www.everydayicons.jp/portfolio/
    http://www.pixelranger.com/
    http://www.andyfoulds.co.uk/main.html
    http://www.citrusmedia.com/
    http://www.2advanced.com/

  18. #17
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    Yeah those 2ADVANCED guys are the shit. Both in design and FLash. They could make there site in strickly HTML and it would be the DOPE.
    skinns
    Skinwerks Tattoo & Design

    "Use your emotions to think, but don't think with your emotions"

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    wow!

    Wow, thanks a lot guys for all those answers! I hope I did not start a Flash / against the world kinda War ....

    Also your answers helped me and gave me a clear idea towards which direction I should follow. I think I am going to try the PHP/coppermine route first, and if it is too much of a pain or my server does not allow it, either go with dreamwaver and/or flash. One thing is sure, I want to keep it VERY simple, and fast. And I do not have much time to update my site, the simpler the better.

    All in all, I am going to investigate each solution you guys are presenting, this was of great help to me,

    thanks again to everyone

  20. #19
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    You can even have redirection coding to send the user to a coded rather than flash version if they don't have a flash plugin or if their browser doesn't support it.

    Flash these days is so powerful and can interface with PHP, ASP, etc that it can be a very dynamic tool. It just depends on what is right for you.

    PHP is free source hence why lots of people use it. ASP is also common but many servers will charge you to upgrade to an ASP server because it must run on microsoft systems. Both will allow you to do databases, both are very dynamic, just depends on what you want to work with.

  21. #20
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    Sadly I'll have to admit I was once one of the anti-flash people. But after following this thread for a while I think I've changed my mind. I'm going to give it a try.

    Especially when Insane Visions mentioned people can't steal your artwork off the web. I hate that. Don't get me wrong I think it's totally okay for ME to do it, just nobody else.....I just squirrill it all away in my vast database of who does what cool pretty picture anyway.
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    Yes Flash is alot better for showing for artwork than HTML, when it comes to safe-keepin. I'm still sure there is a way to take almost anything you see. I have had to threaten a site before with Legal action in order to get my artwork removed.
    skinns
    Skinwerks Tattoo & Design

    "Use your emotions to think, but don't think with your emotions"

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    all you have to do is place a watermark on the images using a photoshop plug-in...it will leave some of your info intact...

  24. #23
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    I'm using Gallery on my new website and it is damn nice. You can get gallery remote app for it and all you have to do is tell it what files to upload, change the text fields and voila, auto-resize, auto-thumbnail, auto-sort, auto everything. I love this one. I did a lot of heavy tweaking on mine to get it looking the way I wanted it to, so it might be useful to know some kind of php unless your just going with the standard design and a basic skin.

    As far as protecting images? I'm not a big fan of blocking people from grabbing artwork. If it wasn't for other artists being open to sharing their work I wouldn't have my large collection of artwork on my computer, so it's my way of hopefully giving back to anyone else that is stupid enough to actually want to grab my art

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    Well its not the people that just use them to look at nice works of art like a lot of people on this forum, the problem is the people who download the work and pass it off as their own. Even watermarks can be by passed with touch up work. You can block right clicking and taking graphics from a server as well, i've seen that done on some larger websites.

  26. #25
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    The only way to make it really hard for people to get your images would be to create a heavily encrypted program (which then can only be run on a specific OS, unless you do it in Java if that's even possible...) which locks functionality like printscreen. I guess it would be even better to let it run outside of the OS - an auto-booting CD. Then the only way to actually steal the stuff (unless you can get past the encryption, which you probably can if you spend too much time trying to) would be to either take photos of the monitor, or connect the display signal to a recording device of some sort.

    It's easy to get by all these annoying right-click blocking scripts...they really serve no purpose whatsoever (more than to annoy the user)...and the same thing can be said about Flash. You want the images from a Flash file? Just decompile it (google: flash decompile)...easy enough.

  27. #26
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    Most files you can just click and drag from the browser onto photoshop if you want them. I have had that "no-right-click" option on my site for about 3 years and it doesn't do anything besides take up code space.
    skinns
    Skinwerks Tattoo & Design

    "Use your emotions to think, but don't think with your emotions"

  28. #27
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    I like to think of the no right click option as just a way to keep honest people honest. There's no fool proof way of keeping people from stealing your work...besides not posting it, but then what good is it too you.
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  29. #28
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    i've used a few but i stuck with flash mx.

    its preety

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