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Should i use it?

 7:59 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Hi everone.

After reading the thread “why flash sites are bad”, it really got me thinking.You see I have started using Fireworks 4 for quite a few things recently. But since im still learning how to use fireworks to its full potential im just wondering if its worth my while. I mean you guys all had so much bad stuff to say about Flash is Fireworks just as bad when doing animation? Any input would be appreciated.




 8:08 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

1) Flash is great at doing animation and is a very good tool. Its just that a lot of people don't know how to use it properly.

2) Fireworks is the best web graphics package IMHO. I love it just dont use it to produce any code!


 8:12 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Thanks Knighty ill remember that:)



 8:22 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)


Fireworks MX is very good and I use it every day, like Knightly says "Its just that a lot of people don't know how to use it properly" - the wrong tools in the wrong hands, if you are a bad driver no matter what car you drive you will still be a bad driver.

Eyecandy is a cool addon also



 8:30 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Hi Dave

I know what you mean but how do you really know if you are good enough to use it.Im just learning but I can still use it pretty well. But im not a guru at it.



 8:40 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Ah lack of confidence been there got the tee-shirt, everyday I find something new about Fireworks, Dreamweaver, SEO etc…. I look at my early sites and think what the hell was I doing, But at the end of the day people pay me to create websites.

The more you do the better you become!!



 8:46 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

I'm trying to ween myself off fireworks as I use Linux now and don't want to pay to upgrade FireWorks 3 but I've gotta say: It's a fantastic tool for web gfx!

I'll never use it to it's full potential as I'm a hopeless artist but I really like it...



 8:46 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)


I too use Fireworks every day and find it a tremendous web graphics programme. The one thing I would recommend is to continue your learning with it. As with Flash, some people get to a certain stage and then don't bother to go any further. As you get more experience, start to use the more advanced functions within the programme (batch processing, find and replace, masking). Especially learn the proper use of slicing as, if the programme has a disadvantage, it is in the default HTML and javascript that it exports (these can be changed). As mentioned above, make the image (and rollovers if necessary) in Fireworks, export them and then use your editor to place and manipulate them on the page.

There is also a wonderful network of Fireworks support and tutorial sites and, of course, the Fireworks newsgroup - which is frequented by many of the best authors on the subject.


 8:46 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

At least you get to look back and say that, sometimes I look at work im currently working on and think what am I doing:)
Well practice does make perfect. So I guess I better go practice.
WOW i didnt know Fireworks was so popular! Cool now i know if i ever get stuck i can ask here;)


[edited by: WildAngel at 8:51 am (utc) on July 23, 2002]


 8:49 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

I have never used fireworks, so I don't really know what it does. What is fireworks for exactly, maybe in relation to other Macromedia products like Flash or DW?


 8:59 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Fireworks is a web graphics programme, which, as that suggests, means that its main focus is on producing "light" graphics, as opposed to poster-style photos. It works in its native .png format and exports to various different formats, including .jpg and .gif.

It specialises in vector graphics (which can be easily resized) as opposed to bitmap graphics (which consist of a number of pixels within a certain density) - although its bitmap capabilities are often severely underestimated by non-users.

It has support for and integration with other Macromedia products - especially the round-trip editing from within DW, where you do not have to leave DW for changes to take effect.

If there is a negative side to using it, it might be the non-support for SVG as a format, if that does make the breakthrough into general acceptance.


 9:01 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Hay Sinner

Fireworks is similar to Flash. I mainly use it for designing new logos, images and im learning how to do animation. Anyone else want to continue the list? At the moment im pretty limited:)



 9:12 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Hmm, from Angel's point of view fireworks is similar to flash, but what I gather from stever, it also has a lot in common with Illustrator. Am I right?


 9:29 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

I'm not familiar with Illustrator but I believe this is a print graphics production programme where graphics can also be exported to web graphics applications. If that is true, the (creaking) Freehand 10 would be the MM equivalent, not Fireworks. Fireworks is lacking in this sense the various colour modes and, of course, the page and brochure design potential of the other two programmes.

The closest Adobe product would be Photoshop. Although Photoshop is a more all-round graphics programme, Fireworks is a specialist web graphics programme. On recent editions, Adobe has strengthened the web graphics side while Macromedia have strengthened the bitmap editing side.

*treads gingerly away from the Adobe/Macromedia demilitarised zone*


 9:48 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

I mentioned Illustrator rather than Photoshop as the latter is pixel based, as the former is vector based.

Of course Adobe say that Illu is perfect for web, print and whatever but I think it was developped primarily for print indeed.

*prepares to ask which is the better tool but sees the mine in time* ;)


 11:00 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Fireworks, is a pretty powerful piece of software, certainly comparable to any web orientated packages on the market. To really get down to what fireworks is capable, it is certainly worth knowing all the various tools that are provided, and spending time playing with them.


 4:54 pm on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

I'm a Photoshop user, and I've only poked around in Fireworks a little bit. Can someone give some specific examples of when/why Fireworks might be a better tool to use? I also use Dreamweaver so that might help, although I don't like to use most code generation tools. So any of the code-generating aspects of Fireworks might not be of as much use to me. Comments?


 5:44 pm on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

The integration with DW (see above) is one big reason. Web graphic production generally is quicker and more convenient, say users with both programmes (do a newsgroup search for FW vs PS). General verdict is: Fireworks for web, Photoshop for photos.


 6:17 pm on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Do you guys think that is a general industry view (Fireworks better for web)? I ask because at the two web studios I worked at, everyone (total of maybe 25 people) used Photoshop. If anyone used Fireworks, I never saw it. That may have been more of a company culture though I suppose. At one company I was the only DW user, everybody else used Homesite, although I won a few converts after DW3 came out. Not that Homesite is bad, but DW is much better for certain tasks.


 6:31 pm on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

To be honest, I don't think it is a general industry view. There are a lot of people who have come into web graphics from print graphics and who have grown up on Macs and Photoshop.

And also to be honest, I wouldn't have any problem using either of them. I personally use Fireworks and, on the few times I have used PS, have found it more longwinded to achieve similar effects. No doubt PS users would say the same about trying to retouch a photo in Fireworks.

(Ouch, we really are treading on thin ice in this thread - FW vs PS, now DW vs Homesite, where to next?)


 6:47 pm on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Fireworks vs. Photoshop: Use whichever you prefer... Whether your preference is based on price, function, or whatever. :)

Web graphics are not nearly as demanding as print, so if all you're doing is web work, I don't recommend spending the extra $$ on Photoshop. (I love photoshop. It's what I've used for years... However I also do print design, and my boss pays for my software.)

If you're really on a budget, but you still want to do a lot of photographic work, get PaintShopPro. It's cheapest by far, and I've never heard of any serious drawbacks to using PSP for web graphics.

Bottom line is not what software you use, it's what results you get. You can make terrific looking web graphics with any of those three programs... and you can make really lousy looking ones too. ;)


 2:07 am on Jul 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

I agree with Mivox: use what you like; if you have any talent at all, the results can be stellar! Seriously, all the mentioned programs are very good and each has a very loyal following. Each can do various things "better" than the other in terms of ease, but all can produce great web graphics.

I use Photoshop because I've learned to be flexible: I can do what I did in Firworks, and what I used to do working with Corel Photo Paint. Before I got into the "comfort zone" I would switch back and forth between programs, doing "this in that one" and "that in this one..." sometimes I would fire up the other one just to keep the dust off of it. But now I save time working almost exclusively with a single program.

Could I use Fireworks in place of Photoshop? Of course... anyone could. The key is learning to use the tool - and the talent behind it. Pick a program, they are all good. Learn it, enjoy it... create!


 9:06 am on Jul 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

>>Fireworks vs. Photoshop

I don't understand the comparison, I always thought Photoshop was a completley different application.

Adobe ImageReady is the closest thing to Fireworks.


 9:12 am on Jul 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

I have both Photoshop and Fireworks, and I will always use PS. This could be down to force of habit, but I think that the power and flexibility of Photoshop wins out every time for me. The Save For Web option has fantastic compression techniques, so I don't think that FW has it there.

However, the rise in popularity of the PNG format - the proprietary FW file format - I think will lead to a rise in FW's fortune.

As for FW's integration wi Dreamweaver... I hate it! :) It produces hugely bloated code and some bizarre ways of using spacer images to control table cell widths (use layers instead!). ImageReady (comes with PS) allows you to save your sliced image html in a table format or a layer format... nice and powerful. By in large I prefer to create my graphics and do the html/dhtml/javascript myself, but many of my colleagues use both PS and FW.

If I'm trying to make changes to their code, I find the PS produced code easy to pick my way through... in comparison the FW produced code is a nightmare.

Just my €0.02


 9:30 am on Jul 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

As a user of both programs (FW4,PS5.5), I have always used Photoshop for image adjustments (color curves, retouching, etc) and Fireworks for actually producing web graphics and images, it has had better text and vector controls, and better compression. But the new FireworksMX has improved filters, and while it is not the program to remove a background, say, is excellent for most tasks that do not require print resolutions. Have not tried the latest photoshop.


 12:51 pm on Jul 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

Photoshop 6 is what lured me away from Fireworks. Up until the v.6 release I used both programs depending on what I wanted to accomplish. Fireworks was my prefered program for create text and text effects.

Photoshop 6 was designed to add to and enhance the web graphic aspect of Adobe's flagship program. The layer control and enhanced text abilities did it for me. From that point on, I began to use Photoshop almost exclusively.

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