Is there a really easy way to design a website?

  MelC28 12:02 04 May 2005

First of all, I will admit that I am a novice. I bought Frontpage 2000, tried Net Objects Fusion 8. I have heard that these are "WYSIWYG" but I don't see it!
I really want to learn how to do this for myself. I want to have a webpage with: diary/journal section which I can update every day or so, faq, contact, shop, photo gallery and favourite links. I don't want advertising on it.
Do I need to take a course?
Any suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated.

  Aspman 14:09 04 May 2005


Learn some HTML, it will help you out when the WYSIWYG editor screws up.

Apart from that you'll need to hunt round the web for learning resources. A book might be an idea but personally I've always found it very hard to learn everything from a book.

A short introcourse might be a good place to start. try your local college. I'm quite rural but even my local college does evening web classes.

  number21online 14:20 04 May 2005

Have to agree with Aspman, learn HTML its very satisfying to actually write the HTML for your web site even if its not perfect you learn as you go on and can sort out any problems that may arise with your web site. The book that never leaves my desk is .... HTML For The World Wide Web 5th Edition by Elizabeth Castro.

  number21online 14:24 04 May 2005

that should read 'It's not easy but is best'

  Pesala 14:44 04 May 2005

click here for a tutorial which I found with a Google search for netobjects fusion tutorial.

Notepad is a joke for beginners to webdesign. You probably do need to learn a little about HTML, but only when things go wrong, or if you want to do something out of the ordinary, which is not too often.

If you find NOF too difficult, you could try Serif Webplus from click here, but my recommendation would be to persevere with Netobjects. It really is very easy to use. There is a free copy of NOF 7 on the April PCA coverdisk. Allegedly, it is easier to use than NOF 8 (which I haven't tried). I started with version 2, then MX, now NOF 7.

This is my website: click here with 200 pages. I did not need to attend a college course, but just learnt by reading the helpfile or asking questions on forums when I got stuck. I have a background in DTP with Page Maker and Serif Page Plus. If you don't have that basic knowledge of page layout, you have a bit more to learn, but not much.

I find it easiest to use tables to organise my pages. Managing pages is a lot easier in NOF than in Web Plus or Page Plus. Just change from page view to site view. To change the site style, or create your own, change to style view.

  PurplePenny 15:13 04 May 2005

I think that it must depend how your brain works. Before I ever got a webpage up and running I tried Frontpage (work subscription), Dreamweaver (magazine CD trial version) and NetObjects Fusion (aslo mag. CD version) and couldn't get the hang of any of them.

I finally got off the ground using WebPlus from Serif. I just seemed more logical to me. But the code that it produced was, according to a web designer friend, awful. (I should point out that it was several years ago and all of the above mentioned WYSIWYGs have brought out numerous new versions since.)

Said friend introduced me to hand coding (which is all he ever uses) and suddenly the penny dropped, the light dawned and everything made sense. I discovered that I loved hand coding.

I do use an editor, I couldn't do it with Notepad; I need the guidance of the colour coding to show me which tags I've forgotten to close/left out. I started with CuteHTML then changed to HTML-Kit (as recommended by our own Mr T.) click here

Like I say - I think it must be something to do with the way my brain works. I like the control that it gives me. (I'm the same about word processors: I hate it when the software second guesses me.)

Of course I have the luxury of not being time-constrained in my creation or of having many sites to maintain, nor are any of them very large. I'd probably feel differently if I were doing it for a living.

If you want to try another WYSIWYG, give Nvu a go (it's free!). click here You may need to use a separate FTP with it though as some people have had trouble with the built in "publish" function. (Filezilla is free: click here)

If you want to learn HTML (which as Aspman says you will need even if you use a WYSIWYG) W3Schools is a good place to start. click here

I'd suggest that you start out with a simple page/site before you think about setting up an online dairy. Once you do want to take that step take a look at WordPress click here (Yes ... it's free!)

  LeadingMNMs 18:11 04 May 2005

I hand code everything and by the looks of you aims I would think it would help you. You say you want to make updates every few days and so it might be a good idea to consider writing a database driven site, using PHP for example. As far as I'm aware, there are no WYSIWYG that can really do this, so HTML is vital.

Personally I have to use a book to help me, and I add a vote for 'HTML for the world wide web with XHTML and CSS - Elizabeth Castro' (no advertising indended). Really because I can't stand having to switch between pages when trying to write some code.

  Pesala 09:45 06 May 2005

Not a debating forum.

The OP asked for "A really easy way to design a website ... which I can update every day or so, faq, contact, shop, photo gallery and favourite links."

Suggesting that he or she use notepad to do that after struggling to understand how to use Frontpage or NetObjects Fusion is a bad joke. Purple Penny is computer literate, and finally got to learn hard coding after getting started with WebPlus. Does someone who is probably not computer literate really need to start by learning HTML code and using an FTP program to upload their pages?

The first thing a beginner needs is to get the satisfaction of seeing their ideas on the web. Then they need to learn how to optimize their graphics for fast download, how to use the right fonts, etc.

WC3 standards, cross-browser compliance, etc., are the last things that they need to know about.

The best advice, therefore, is to help them get to grips with a good WYSIWYG editor like NetObjects Fusion or Frontpage, or to try a simple template based program like WebPlus or PagePlus.

  Pesala 10:05 06 May 2005

click here

So what!?

  Yoda Knight 14:52 06 May 2005

Use Microsoft Word to create a normal page, then save it as an html page

  Dart Echo 16:25 06 May 2005

Very well put sir.

MelC28, if you want a simple to do but at the same time nice looking there are many WYSIWYG free progs about the place.

No need at all for you to learn the code -- even top web designers use Web Editors (albeit expensive ones) these days because they make life easier. Simple as that! The end result is what matters - it's not about "look how clever I am" -- who thinks about that when looking at a site.

NOF is ok but the very easiest to use freebie used to be Namo WebEditor3 if you can find it.

Also with regard to WC3 Validation, forget it. IE will read them all ok and that is what most people use. These numerous Mickey Mouse browsers that keep appearing, for the interest of browser fans, do tend to make things appear in a different way to that which the editor intended.

No matter - despite what some people may say or think, don't worry about FireFox, Avant, Opera etc. The people using those will, in any event be too busy messing about with their computers, it's settings, the latest multi-multi tabbing feature ever to stumble across your site, or mine.

'Is there a really easy way to design a website?' No, not easy. It won't do itself but it is not that difficult either to make a simple nice looking site or page or two to begin with. With a bit of application you you'll do it. Don't get bogged down with HTML - don't - or get disheartened if you fail a bit here and there.


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