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Old 03-26-2006, 07:59 PM   #1
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Website Design Software Advice Needed

Hi I just joined the WBCCI Montana Unit, and would like to build a website for the MT Unit. Do not want to spend a fortune, and am looking for something with templates to choose from and link buttons, and drag and drop, photo publishing, and also easy site maintenance. Something simple to use for a guy who can point and click and one finger type, well maybe a couple..
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Old 03-26-2006, 08:23 PM   #2
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Microsoft Front Page.
It's drage and drop and it has templates. Really quite easy.
I'm not sure of the current price.

Also your provider might include a 5 page website in the price of hosting, check it out when looking into hosting providers.

Hope this was helpfull.

Michael

Montana, love it!
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Old 03-26-2006, 08:51 PM   #3
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You can also use Microsoft Word, then Save As ... .html and upload that to your site. But for a FREE software package, you can use Open Office (http://www.openoffice.org/) which provides the same functionality as Microsoft Office. Also, 1stPage from EverSoft (http://www.evrsoft.com/) has a free product as well as a fully supported pay-for product.
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Old 03-26-2006, 08:55 PM   #4
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David,

You don't have to spend a dime. There are many free software packages, open source, that do a fantastic job. May not have all the bells & whistles as FP or Dreamweaver but do you need all the bells & whistles?

I have not paid a dime to do the savewally site or any site I maintain. Take a look at my Buttercup site (link in my signature). All free.

Recomendations:
NVU
PHPWCMS what I use for SaveWally and actually most of my sites.
Gimp Very robust graphics tool on par with photoshop.
Open Office Like Micro$oft office but free. It has word processing, etc and you can also put together web pages.

There you go - that's what I use. If you need advice or help, let me know. I am there for you.
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Old 03-26-2006, 08:59 PM   #5
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You might try checking into some of the sites where you can build you site and they use templates, I built my site for free but they have ads on them. If you pay then you can get a site without ads, they have templetes and it was very easy to do.
http://www.tripod.lycos.com/
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Old 03-26-2006, 09:05 PM   #6
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Thanks Michael, Barry & Lisa j, & Buttercup, I have been surfing the web most of the day on this subject, and I am just to the point of information overload. Thanks again for all your help..
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Old 03-26-2006, 09:05 PM   #7
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Mac

iWeb is a great software if you own a Mac !

http://www.apple.com/ilife/iweb/
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Old 03-26-2006, 09:57 PM   #8
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Here is a Mac iLife Example

I built my initial web site in a little over 1 hour with iWeb 06 that comes with the iLife 06 suite of software.

http://www.tonkawoods.com
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Old 03-26-2006, 10:06 PM   #9
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Second vote for N/vu...I use it for all my websites as well.

It's WYSIWYG and it's free ~

Shari
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Old 03-26-2006, 10:42 PM   #10
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You might look at web studio 4 - also easy to use. They have a users forum a lot like this one for help and input. www.webstudio.com I used it to build the Oregon Unit website. It's just like laying out a document, templates are available if you desire or you can run wild with html...
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Old 03-27-2006, 09:31 AM   #11
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Looking for software is missing the key issue. That key issue is content.

How is content generated? How is it maintained? How is it kept current?

Web site content is (or can be) very simple text files. As noted above, there are all sorts of editing programs for them that can provide help with styles and basic layout. Some folks even use the Windows Notepad.

But the key issue is to get a website that is one you can manage and maintain and that those who follow you can pick up and manage and maintain. Unless you purchase technical support, it is probably not a good idea to put together a web site that you don't understand how to keep going.

The biggest error I have seen is when some club geek sets up a web site and then looses interest, moves away, or otherwise becomes unavailable. The content goes astray, gets out of date, and doesn't serve the club. Then something needs to be done and nobody really knows what.

One of the nice things about Buttercup's approach (Content Management System) is that content can be managed by several folks without too much training. But the question is who maintains and manages the system? Who keeps the software up to date? Who does backups? Who fixed a hacker's intrusion and defacing?

Front Page, limited, comes with Windows but what happens if you get a Mac or Linux type as a webmaster?

And who is going to keep the domain name registered and manage the domain name and web hosting service?

Putting a web site up is easy. Having one that serves a useful purpose over time is hard. It isn't the software to create content that you should worry about. Your worries should be about how to get current content on the website and how to keep it up to date and how to keep this going year after year.
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Old 03-28-2006, 12:41 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leipper
Front Page, limited, comes with Windows but what happens if you get a Mac or Linux type as a webmaster?

And who is going to keep the domain name registered and manage the domain name and web hosting service?

Putting a web site up is easy. Having one that serves a useful purpose over time is hard. It isn't the software to create content that you should worry about. Your worries should be about how to get current content on the website and how to keep it up to date and how to keep this going year after year.
I actually have general purpose answers to a few of these... First off, I believe that Front Page can be purchased for the mac as well as the PC.

As for the domain name registration - I registered for 9 years (the max that I could) for the astronomy club site I maintain. Now I am at the point that we have a few other people to maintain the site, I can turn it over to them, name and all. I also advised them about getting their own server space and they are going to make that happen. So the site can be handed over to the club and I am free from it.

When you think about it - sites come and go and it is hard to use a platform that all can be comfortable with. I am comfortable with phpwcms because it does have the wysiwyg editor built in and that does a sufficient job. This type of platform can be used by many people and there is no software to download or install - it runs off the site.

I think the overall answer is to find at least 2 people to be involved in the web (if possible) and to ensure that the unit, in this case, maintains the domain name and server space and a current backup of the site.
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Old 03-28-2006, 08:45 AM   #13
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I actually have general purpose answers to a few of these ...
The whole idea is to have answers before the questions become important - to have thought out the problems and set up policies and a process so they don't become crises.

Quote:
When you think about it - sites come and go and it is hard to use a platform that all can be comfortable with.
But an organization and its records and its presence cannot "come and go" and remain healthy. Its continuity requires that some common ground be found, "a platform" that most can be reasonably comfortable with so that they new members and volunteers are willing to learn what it takes to keep it going in a consistent and coherent manner.

The continuity of presence and expression of purpose is what makes an organization different from an individual. In a small organization it is very tough to keep the organization from being just a hobby of some strong willed individual rather than its own entity. It can also be rather painful at times to keep it standing on its own feet. It is up to all of the members of the organization, even those with special skills or bright ideas, to realize that they cannot go it alone and must get the entire organization behind their efforts in order to contribute most to the success of the organization.
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Old 03-28-2006, 10:26 AM   #14
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These are excellent points. An outdated website is of little use. I am a totally amatuer web mistress and my own experience has been that my wbcci unit of non-webusers forgets to send me current info for the web pages. I usually get the info from the newsletter. So much for up to date.


Building the site is the easy part - maintaining it is the hassle. Save yourself some headache and have one or 2 pages that need regular updates. e.g. calendar and club news.

If you have to purchase software be sure that the club pays for it - they own it. Same with the URL. Andy R - owner of this forum, has been genrously donating server space to wbcci units.

And - waiting for flames - AVOID front page! It's more likely to be hacked.
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