I was in conversation with a friend recently and mentioned I was taking a DW tutorial and thought it was really nice. I mentioned that I could easily see a corporation or professional developers using DW. So, my friend asks me, "Who uses DW? Can you show me a website?" And, of course I could not answer.
Can someone show me an example of a large website(s) developed with DW without upsetting developers or the company? I have NO doubt that thousands of examples exist, but since I am new to DWCC I could not give examples.
David In Texas
Large [corporate] websites are built by teams, and some of those team members may use Dreamweaver, while others will use different development tools. In my work, I often collaborate with others on websites and we NEVER ask each other which development tool we are using because it doesn't matter, unless version control (to keep track of who did what on which page or script) is an issue.
Dreamweaver is a tool for general web development and front end development (what the site visitors see). It's a fine tool, but large websites generally involve database integration, which means server side scripting, and DW is not the prime tool for this, although it can be used for such work.
So if you want to know if a large and wonderful website can be built using just Dreamweaver as the development tool, the answer is yes in theory but unlikely in practice.
Thanks, Rob. I'm familiar with website development—front end and back end—and understand that DW is probably not the the tool used for top-down/bottom-up development. But, certainly there are development groups that use DW for there customers.
David In Texas
But, certainly there are development groups that use DW for there customers
Low-end "development groups," I guess, maybe. But why would a team of developers of large sites force themselves to use ONLY Dreamweaver for development? That doesn't make any sense. Is there a point to this?
It's so difficult to tell what is made with an editor and what is not anymore because unlike previous years where you would look for key markers in the code like Frontpage extensions, that type of code is not as prevelant anymore. Some developers use Dreamweaver with a CMS whether it be something in-house or an open source option. Other use it with email marketing or tasks of that nature. If you want to search through these forums you will find users who develop with DW, but I doubt the majority use it exclusively anymore for website development.
Honestly, this question is akin to asking "What car are you driving to work". It depends on the work, and on the individual.
I wouldn't want to drive through the Amazonian rainforest in a Ferrari F1. Or drive a T-90 Russian battle tank to my cubicle job downtown.
I mean, theoretically it could be done, but in practice you choose the best tool for the job. That means that DW is not really the best choice at all for web application development. And I would not use NetBeans for simple front end work.
And then there are personal preferences that come into play. I know many developers who dislike DW with a vengeance. And I know those who like DW to code sites in. And anyone else falls somewhere inbetween.
David, I think you are looking at this the wrong way. There is a great deal of work on the web done with Dreamweaver, but you can't identify that work by looking at the websites, and in current website development, DW is not the only tool used on most "large" sites.
When you buy a book, can you tell if the author used MS Word to write it? Did the carpenters who built your house use only Makita saws? And does it matter?
David, every term a number of my students create absolutely awesome looking and techically accomplised web projects in Dreamweaver. Dreamweaver has been used on tens of thousands of websites. There are many other web dev tools and frameworks out there - you cannot compare Photoshop's situation with Dreamweaver. It just does not work like that.
19% of all the world wide web's sites now run on Wordpress. Does that figure mean anything? Does it mean you should be using Wordpress for every website project? No, of course it doesn't.
If an astonishing piece of web wizardry was achieved in Dreamweaver, would that make you feel better about being a Dreamweaver user yourself? Is that the sort of self-justification you seek? DW is a very capable code editor, and there are many others out there that are arguably perhaps "better" or "inferior". It's up to you whether it is the code editor FOR YOU. Only you can decide.
I say: "Create and Be Happy".
Rob, Thanks for your replies, but my question was simple and still stands. I'm looking at it the wrong way? Really? The developers of sites can certainly show examples. And, I never stated that DW was the ONLY tool used.
If I were writing a book, it would be very good info if a writer(developer) suggested MS Word. I don't give a rat's rump about content, simply process.
Again, my very simple question stands.
David In Texas
Now you've hit the nail on the head: process. It's not that simple, especially so in web development. It completely depends on the type of project, the technologies used, the scope, number of people working on the project, interoperability with other apps, personal prefs, and so on. There are too many variables.
Anyway, the web is, I guess, too open to say "this here mega corporate website was completely done in Dreamweaver". Just does not work that way. Web devs generally don't really care about the code editor used, as long as it does the job for them. Many switch tools throughout their career, and have to.
With visual effects and animation and so on it is generally much easier to identify and show the product used in production of said final result.
And again I ask the question: why is it so important to you to justify the use of Dreamweaver to yourself and your friend?
We could, of course, give you a list of the most popular code editors, tools, and IDEs currently favoured by most web developers. The list would be a long one, though.
I have built several cms web sites and a complete company intranet and ems in Dreamweaver but, and here's the but, I use Dreamweaver because of the UI and the live view features. Most of the PHP coding I do only starts with the default Dreamweaver server behaviors and bindings. I use them because I can generate code that gets the concept down and working in just a few clicks.
Most of the PHP is fairly good, but I spend a bunch of time editing code by hand. Dreamweaver is a very good code editor and the code hinting is great.
CSS is kind of OK in Dreamweaver, better in CC. It's very easy to get the basics down quickly. Here again, I end up doing a lot of tweaking by hand because it faster. The new CSS design tools in CC are amazing for organizing code.
I work mostly on a Mac and Coda is also a tool that I use, but only for code cleanup and customizing code. Coda is hands down the best code editor I've ever seen for web work, but Dreamweaver beats it all over the place for tweaking the look and feel when you start working with the live view, especially in CC.
I hope this helps. As others have said, Dreamweaver is a good tool, but an effective, secure, efficient and innovative web site is more a matter of careful planning and collaboration than the tools used to write the code.
To answer your original question, most designers simply don't use "only DW" on any given project, so saying "site xyz.com was built using DW" would be, maybe not a flat out lie, but inaccurate at least, the majority of the time. DW is part of the mix for a lot of sites, rarely is it the only tool used.
One good way to see if a site was created in DW is to look for a tell-tale marker in the code like...
Another good tell is a link to a SpryAssets folder in the <head> section of the code. That is also something DW used (now gone in CC) to create effects like tabbed panels.
This is the kind of question you might see in consumer-level product forums like iWeb, Xara Web Designer or Muse.
"See what I can do with product X?" or "Can you share examples of what you have done with product X?"
Unfortunately, that is not relevant to enterprise level or even smaller commercial sites where the success or failure of the project hinges on the experience of the people doing the work; not the apps they use.
I'm a long-time DW user and I like it for the bulk of what I do. But it's not the only tool in my arsenal anymore than a wrench is the only tool in my garage. When I'm discussing a project with a client or collaborator, I rarely if ever discuss which apps I use because it doesn't matter.