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Dreamweaver Dreamweaver MX 2004 Demystified December 02, 2003

Dreamweaver MX 2004 Demystified is an excellent resource for web developers who use DWMX 2004, but probably shouldn't be your first choice if you're looking to make full use of the tool with ColdFusion. The writing is fresh and easy to read, written in a conversational tone that makes reading and understanding topics easy. The book is chock full of useful screenshots with clear labels, showing exactly what the text is talking about. There are plenty of useful tables and illustrations, making the overall quality of the book stand out.

As a ColdFusion developer, however, the book seriously falls short. To be fair, the book isn't intended to be a Coldfusion reference, but there are some serious flaws in the chapter on integration with ColdFusion that could have been avoided if the author and technical editors actually knew ColdFusion. Rather than talk about how to write ColdFusion code, the chapter should have been written with a focus purely on integration with a ColdFusion server. Instead I felt like it tried to fill space by explaining things about ColdFusion that quite frankly were completely incorrect. I'm not as experienced with other web application models like PHP and ASP, but I also felt as if I was rereading documentation, rather than learning something new. I felt as if those chapters were book thickeners, and would have given the book 5 stars had those chapters been more useful.

I was pleased to find a chapter on integrating DWMX 2004 with version control systems - a topic that has been fresh on my mind lately as I consider using Dreamweaver MX 2004 100% of the time.

In short, the book is worth having for any serious web developer. I'm pretty confident that when I run into a problem with DWMX 2004, I'll be able to find an answer in Dreamweaver MX 2004 Demystified.

Posted by Michael Buffington at 11:13 AM in Dreamweaver | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Breeze, Central, ColdFusion, Contribute, Director, Dreamweaver, Flash Arrived in SLC for MAX 2003 November 18, 2003

If you are at all interested in my experience at the Macromedia MAX 2003 Conference this year, you can read about it from the special page I will be updating at http://www.ekosm.com/projects/max2003/. I will also be photo blogging along with other's at Community Vision (created by Christian Cantrell). If you see me at MAX please say "Hi", but don't ask me to eat cinnamon.

Posted by ErikG at 01:24 AM in Breeze, Central, ColdFusion, Contribute, Director, Dreamweaver, Flash | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
Dreamweaver DWMX 2004 on MacNN September 24, 2003

Big thread discussing the pitfalls of DWMX 2004 (I'm already tired of typing 2004 after everything).

I haven't yet seen the app on my Mac or PC, but I can say that I'm not too excited about trying it out on either after all I've been hearing.

Posted by Michael Buffington at 09:45 AM in Dreamweaver | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
Dreamweaver My Beef with DWMX 2004 September 10, 2003

Every program has bugs, errors, things people would like to make better... Macromedia promotes that they listen to the customers via their "wish-list" submission. Well... the following are all things that I submitted to Macromedia (directly to a Macromedia employee I met at DevCon who told me face-to-face that he personally works with the DW Team Manager and would submit anything I e-mailed to him) in November of 2002. All of these existed in DWMX. That's where my main problem is, MM had the time to fix these items, but did not, despite the wishes of their customers. Most of the below features were supported in the CF Studio line.

  • INSERT Key does nothing in code view - When in code view, hit your INSERT key, start typing in your code, notice that the behavior has not changed.
  • CTRL+Enter does nothing - In CF Studio this would produce a <br> tag, as well as put a hard return in your code.
  • CONTROL+Mouse Click Doesn't Select Entire Tag - In CF Studio if you did a CNTRL+Click on any portion of a tag, the entire tag would be selected.
  • Dragging an image into your code - In DWMX you could not drag an image at all from the Files pane to your code, in DWMX 2004 you now can. Hooray! But one problem, only the SRC attributes is pre-filled; compared to CF Studio which also pre-filled the HEIGHT and WIDTH (very nice and time saving).
  • Image Size Get Resized without my consent (I fell really violated) - Lets say you have an IMG tag in your code, and you have the image HEIGHT and WIDTH purposefully set differently than the actual image size. When you RIGHT+CLICK on the IMG tag, and select "Edit tag <img>" from the context menu, then place your cursor in either the HEIGHT or WIDTH fields, the values in those two field automatically update to the actual size of the image. This should not happen. There is a calculator button for this action.
  • Drag and Copy has no cursor change - When I highlight code and drag a copy of it to a new place in my code, when I hold the CONTROL key during the drag, the cursor does not change to alert me I am doing a "Drag and Copy" opposed to just a "Drag". Compare to CF Studio.
  • Refreshing style list loses style drop down - In my code if I type <div class=" I immediately get "style" drop down list where I can select classes I defined in my style sheet. Most of the time when creating a new site I need to select "Refresh Style List" from this "style" drop down list so the classes can be populated. When I do this I lost my drop down list, and I have to delete the "class=""" and retype it so I can get the updated "style" drop down list. It would be better if when I did the refresh option I immediately got the updated drop down list.
  • File/Directory Browser - I have seen many requests from people wishing that there was an option to make the file browser the same as in CF Studio, unfortunately I still can't find a preference for this.

So you can see the common theme here is that CF Studio had some superior features that MM has not taken the time to include into the DW line. And then some are just flaws in how they implemented a feature. Note: My evaluation of DWMX 2004 has just been with the 30 day trial version they offer for free on their web site.

Posted by ErikG at 05:39 PM in Dreamweaver | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)
Dreamweaver Snippets Converter August 14, 2003

Massimo Foti created a ColdFusion Studio/Homesite to Dreamweaver snippets converter a while ago, but I just came across it and found it very useful. From his site:

This extension addresses the need to convert Snippets created in HomeSite, JRun Studio, ColdFusion Studio or the TMT Snippets Panel into the Dreamweaver MX format for use.

Posted by Michael Buffington at 08:54 AM in Dreamweaver | Permalink | Comments (1)
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