Book Review: Page (1) of 1 - 01/28/05 Email this story to a friend. email article Print this page (Article printing at page facebook

Design and Deploy web sites with Dreamweaver and Contribute

Finally you'll learn how to use Contribute's Publishing System By Adam Bell
click on image to buy
Design and Deploy web sites with Macromedia Dreamweaver MX 2004 and Contribute 3
by Joseph Lowery
256 Pages
$44.99 US/$64.99 CAN
Training from the Source
Macromedia Press/Peachpit Press
click on image to buy
Besides being what might be the lengthiest title of a book I've seen in the 4 years I've written for DMN, this edition of Macromedia's long-standing Training from the Source series reflects on the collaborative efforts using both Dreamweaver and Contribute for both the designer and the client being able to work in harmony designing and more importantly, maintaining websites.

For those of you unaware of Contribute, it's a low-cost ($149US) program that allows anyone to easily maintain a website by connecting online to the site that is defined (usually by the design studio) and then being able to edit the site's content directly in Contribute's own browser-like display.

In this project, you work with a faux site for a hospital (you can actually see this site as it's online at that was actually created for another book, Roadmap to Contribute by the same author.

In the book, you will first learn how to use Contribute's basic features, then create a site structure in Dreamweaver. You'll create the various folders you'll need to make your project much more effective. You'll learn how to use Server-Side Includes (SSI's) to help in the creation of Dreamweaver Templates for the site and then use CSS to help create the layout and type selection for the project. You will also investigate templates even further by learning how to use optional and repeating regions and setting up its' parameters successfully.

One of the cool things you'll investigate is how to create FlashPaper by converting various Office files to the .swf format, creating a Flash slideshow in Dreamweaver and then inserting the FlashPaper in Contribute. In case you're not aware how FlashPaper works, it allows you to insert all sorts of different types of material into the FlashPaper interface, which is embedded into a webpage and then makes these documents easy to print.

Finally, you'll learn how to use Contribute's Publishing System and how you, as the lead designer, will determine how which users will be able to edit the site using Contribute and which areas they can actually edit so the overall site design does not get ruined.

Contribute has become one of Macromedia's most successful products ever but no one has ever written a book that really explains how to properly work between the program most pros use (Dreamweaver) and the program that the non-pros use (Contribute) and this release does so successfully. It also shows a number of features in both programs you may not have used or even considered. That is always a nice plus to be sure. While I would recommend this book to any professional web designer, I'm not so certain I would pass this on to my clients. Why? Well, I would be afraid after giving them this book they would 'think' that all of a sudden they could create their own websites, thus rendering my services useless (in their el cheapo minds, of course)!

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Adam Bell is the Design Director, CEO, Videographer and sometimes janitor with ( amazingly not getting plastered in the French Quarter of New Orleans, LA.
Related Keywords:Joseph Lowery, Macromedia, Dreamweaver MX 2004, Contribute 3, Training from the Source, Build web sites

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