Frontpage 2003 - wyswyg to what extent?

  Revi 20:15 06 Jan 2005

I have a page with text written in verdana in size 8 or 3pts in MS Word. When I link this page to a frame and preview it in Internet Explorer then the text appears helter skelter and the formatting is spoiled. I tried with Times New Roman, the result is the same.

  Taran 21:08 06 Jan 2005

Can you either post a copy of the code into this page or give us a link to an uploaded page where the fault is ?

Be advised that displaying a Word document in a web page frame is poor practice to say the least.

Instead of linking to the Word document, why don't you just copy the contents of the Word document into a web page in FrontPage, save it and preview it ?

Frames should be avoided at all costs for more reasons than you can shake a stick at. Text and images, the typical content of a Word document, may be pasted into FrontPage web pages and so I see no reason why you'd want to link a Word file into a frame at all.

In fact, to avoid any real issues with transposing text formats from Word to FrontPage, choose the Edit, Paste Special, Do Not Convert option from the top toolbar then format the text as you want it to appear within FrontPage. You can just do a straight copy and paste but not all of the fonts you may have used might be web friendly.

  Revi 21:32 06 Jan 2005

Thanks a lot. Will try and do what you say and will see the result. While what you say should be right I, as a total novice, find using frames saves a lot of work and time and not using frames increases them.

  Taran 22:05 06 Jan 2005

Frames are appalling - a legacy left over from the yester-days of web authoring when managing a large site was only really practically achievable with framed content.

Once dynamic (programmed) web sites became more widespread frames started to die a natural death and I, for one, hope they vanish without a trace in the very near future.

The biggest penalty you will probably pay if you choose a framed site is in search engine indexing.

Search engines still have serious problems with frames.

Simply put, a frame site normally has a top, banner area frame, left navigation panel frame and main content frame page. That's thre pages to display one page of content. Which one does the search engine index ?

It naturally wants to index the content page, because it has loads of nice content text, but if it does that and someone finds your page via the search engine, the only page that loads up is that content frame. It loads into the browser without the top banner frame and left navigation frame and unless you included hyperlinks on your content pages leading back to the rest of the site, there is no way to find all three page cmoponents to make the whole.

Theer is some code you can embed into your frame pages so that if one of them loads into the browser on its own, without the other frame pages, the entire page will automatically reload into the browser with all elements present and correct.

The words 'frames' and 'headaches' go hand in hand as far as I am concerned.

There are far more elegant ways of designing and delivering web content and unless your site is truly vast there is no real need for frames at all.

Take a look at the Shared Borders feature of FrontPage, which places common elements over the top and side of all pages (just like framed layouts) but keeps each page as a single element - click here;en-us;825499


  Taran 22:07 06 Jan 2005

I forgot about the way Microsoft links get mangled in the forum sometimes.

This is the link in full - click here

  Revi 23:31 06 Jan 2005

Your reply leaves one to conclude that building websites should really be done by expert programmers, to quote you: "Once dynamic (programmed) web sites became more widespread.........."? Ordinary folk should satisfy themselves with small and simple websites. regards.

  Revi 23:39 06 Jan 2005

Sorry, I wanted to write your reply leads one to conclude...........

  Revi 00:02 07 Jan 2005

Taran you say: "Simply put, a frame site normally has a top, banner area frame, left navigation panel frame and main content frame page. That's thre pages to display one page of content. Which one does the search engine index ?" If I have understood FP correctly then there is yet a 4th page too, the Frameset page which contains the 3 mentioned pages. Can the search engine not index the Frameset. I am only trying to understand, could you please clarify?

  Taran 12:53 07 Jan 2005

No, I don't mean to suggest for one moment that "Ordinary folk should satisfy themselves with small and simple websites".

As far as I am concerned there are no 'ordinary folk' and your website may be as complex as you like.

However, you need to keep one thing very firmly in your mind at all times; your website is not for you. It is for all the visitors you hope will hit your pages and like what they see enough to stay a while. With that in mind things like ease of navigation, logical page and site structure, even sympathetic colours and so on go a long way to making any site a success.

Content may be king but not if you wrap it in a site that is difficult or ungainly to navigate. Choosing frames is OK if you have a VERY thorough understanding of ALL the pros and cons.

One of the main points involves search engines, as I've already touched upon, and no, a search engine cannot index a frameset page. A frameset page is literally a set of tagged text that tells your browser to load all the other pages in their relevant places that make up your particular framed layout.

This is how it works: calling your pages meaningful file names (without going over the top) can help a lot, so your contact page could be called contact_us.htm and not Page6.htm

Then most search engines like to see a balance of keywords in the content of the page, and if your content is reflected in some good metatags that can also help.

Without going into any more detail, we can stop right there and I'll ask you this: which page in a frameset does the search engine attempt to 'read' and remember ?

Your frameset instruction has no content to index, so that's out. The header frame might have some interesting content but it usually only holds a banner and some hyperlinks, so that's probably out too. The left frame normally holds hyperlink navigation elements, so there's no real content to read and index, which leaves your content frame which, we will remember, is one part of an assembles jigsaw puzzle of pages that are displayed in a browser as a single page.

So which page gets indexed ?

The one with the content and probably not one of the others.

Not the top or left hand frames and certainly not the frameset, just the content page.

If I search for your site in Google and find a link to our_services.htm (for the sake of example) and visit the page, if it loads into my browser as a single content page with no top and left frames or any other missing elements I close my browser and go visit another site.

I don't care how interesting your content may or may not be, if there are missing frame elements you've lost your site navigation and possibly your logo banner as well, so I have no way to get to any other part of your site other than to manually start typing in parts of the page address from the browser address bar in the hopes of calling an entire frameset.

As I said previously, there is code that can be embedded into frame elements which force the browser to reload the entire frameset, but this code is also unfriendly to search engines (it is a modified redirect script) and so while it can be done, it really doesn't get you much further forward with the exception of trying to ensure that there are no missing page elements.

A programmed website is the best way to manage large amounts of information, like this forum, where page content is written to and read from a database. It is not for the beginner and is at its best where a very large site is concerned - in fact, I can't think of any good reason to start dynamic web programming for a small site.

Use frames or not as you choose - all things boil down to choice at the end of the day. I am only trying to give you some information to help you make an informed decision. There is a lot more to frames than a way to achieve a certain layout which, it has to be said, can also be achieved through other means. I am not trying to force you into anything - frames though, are a web designers nightmare if you don't know EXACTLY what you are doing, and, more importantly, why you are doing it.

  Revi 13:23 07 Jan 2005

I have given up my project with frames. Thanks and regards.

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