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Advice for a Beginning Web Developer

By ksmith ·
I have had a small connection to Web design for a while now, but this past semester was my first actual class in it. As it turned out I knew more than my teacher, despite it being a tech school.
Everything I know I have taught myself and I am currently teaching myself php and sql.

I am experienced writing out the code behind the wysiwyg design look. I am also semi-experienced with the dreamweaver creative suite. I have liked the outcome of the things I have worked on in the suite, but I know there is a lot more available that I haven't been able to touch upon yet.

What some of the better/best deals available as far as webspace, domains go?

How do metatags work? I know they are used to get your site listed in search engines, but how is this process set up.

I am a beginner, but would really like to get something started as I am in a few businesses. I am of course going to research this on my own as well, I just wanted to get some real life advice from experienced professionals as well. Thank You.

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Advice for a Beginning Web Developer

by hendrixextra-sur In reply to Advice for a Beginning We ...

Aside from the obvious answers..take some classes, read a lot about it...I can make some concrete suggestions.

The best way to learn anything is by doing it. Choose a small website to design and follow design principles (myriad resources on the web)in designing and building it. You will first have to decide what environment and/or tools you want to use.

Personally, I like PHP and MYSQL, toward that end I can suggest a couple of really good books by one of my favorite authors, but you would be better off perusing his site yourself at http://cristiandarie.ro/

One of his books, deals specifically with Search Engine Optimization for PHP developers, and I highly recommend it!

There is quite a lot to know, but if you choose a project and start there, you will learn much more than by simply reading about it!

Good Luck!

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Cheap domains and webspace

by CharlieSpencer In reply to Advice for a Beginning We ...

See www.1and1.com. They'll provide one domain name and 10gb of space for $4 monthly. I use them for my fantasy league.

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webspace and domain registration

by hendrixextra-sur In reply to Cheap domains and webspac ...

I really like www.pair.com.

They are just a tad more than others, but not painfully so, and I researched their physical installation and was very impressed. If you have a mission critical application I would highly recommend them. Their tech support is good but they are rather inclined toward the techy user..

This is one of those things, you need to shop around.

I too was in situations where upon entering a class I found out I was already ahead of the other students or even the teacher; but you paid good money for that class! I used to ask the teacher for higher level work or drop the class and sign up for the next level class. It is a little unfair to complain about it if you don't act on it...

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I recommend that all web developers read the WCAG

by Nodisalsi In reply to Advice for a Beginning We ...

Link: http://www.w3.org/TR/WAI-WEBCONTENT/ "Web Content Accessibility Guidelines"

Essentially all you need to learn is DHTML, Java and Javascript for the presentation side. From the server side you might also benefit from researching PERL, Apache, in addition to MySQL and PHP.

And, with respect, I wish people would stop using Dreamweaver and software like this; it's not a tool for development or deployment, it's nothing more than a teaching aid for tricking non-computer literate office-types into thinking they are experts at something IT related. By all means use it for WYSIWYG design, but then edit the source manually to remove all the superflous clutter before integrating with PHP et al..

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Drawbacks to WYSIWYG

by hendrixextra-sur In reply to I recommend that all web ...

YES!!

Dreamweaver and others like it do create bloated code! You must learn how to do it "by hand" and clean your code, add comments, use self-documenting variable and function names etc etc.

great point!

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Code

by ksmith In reply to I recommend that all web ...

All I ever used to do was use code. Most of the time it was XHTML and CSS, but I have tried mixing in others as well.

I didn't start using the programs, until I took that class. I didn't like them at first, because I was so used to the other way. However, I have gotten so I like using them to enhance the basic design look, make templates, and add in specific features. I keep the code window open the entire time and I am consistently making changes as I see fit, but it does quicken the process for specific aspects of the designing process.

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