|Client will be using GoLive...|
...and doesn't know HTML
I'll be doing optimizing work for a client who's building a site with GoLive. I don't know the program... I'm a hand-coder. From posts on this Forum, I understand GoLive gives code that's a bit flabbier than DreamWeaver. I'm guessing I could probably live with it.
I've also discovered, though, that the client doesn't know HTML, and these two things together have me worried. A bunch of questions come to mind...
- First, are there any things about the program I should look out for... eg, little bits of automation that will change page titles or whatever (as FrontPage does) and give me nightmares?
- Does the program provide some sort of access to the code at a text editing level? Does it leave this code alone once it's been edited?
- Is there manual control of the head section, eg, so I can have them get rid of unnecessary tags and paste in the title and tags I provide?
- Will the program generate, say, XHTML 4.0 transitional pages if I specify that to the client?
- I assume refinements like the table trick (to put main content above the left side nav bar) are out of the question with GoLive. Is this correct?
- If I specify that a heading be an <h2> heading controlled by CSS, can GoLive do this, either when the page is built, or afterwards at a code level... and, again, will it leave these tags alone after they're put in?
I've already assigned Laura LeMay's Teach Yourself HTML... book, but I realize I may be saddled with a bunch of problems that usually aren't mine to solve, and I want to be prepared.
I find the crucial thing is preparation...mark up the pages so that it is very clear what content belongs where, and most people can get to grips with making alterations direct on the html with no problem at all
I would suggest that you tell the client that the mark up is already done...all they need to ever do is copy and paste equivalent bits or alter some text...relying on software to do it is a huge risk...relying on the client is a risk...relying on both GoLive and the client to get it right most of the time sounds like extremely long odds to me
I think Eric is completely on target. Also depending on your relationship with this client you might want to make sure and mention that if THEY mess it up that it will cost them to have you to repair it. I find that not mentioning this creates many problems.
Specific to GoLive:
If your client will actually be laying out pages, look at the table code. It's usually good, but could get messy if the client doesn't know what they're doing.
If there are any <li> or <ul> or other indented lists, double check the code after the client edits them. You can end up with some strange nested lists if you're not careful.
If you are using css <div>, <span> etc., double check formatting after a page is edited. GoLive has excellent support for genenrating both internal and external css stylesheets, but when you go to edit a "styled" page, your text sometimes gets bumped into a styled <div> it doesn't belong in, or gets pushed out of one it does belong in.
GoLive's code isn't any flabbier than Dreamweaver's... it's just flabby in different places. If Dreamweaver has a beer gut, GoLive has fat thighs... ;)
I work with both GoLive and BBEdit (Mac text editor), and neither one has a problem "talking to" the other one's files.
I assume refinements like the table trick (to put main content above the left side nav bar) are out of the question with GoLive. Is this correct?
You assume incorrectly. GoLive allows perfectly good control over table layout, and if you provided a hand written HTML page with "tricked" tables pre-written to your client, they would have no trouble opening those files in GoLive and plugging their content into the appropriate table cells.
GoLive does provide built-in validation... I use HTML 4 Transitional, myself. I haven't gotten the very newest version yet, but I wouldn't be surprised to see that it includes XHTML support.
The only tags I have ever seen it "insert" into the code is a "generator" meta, telling the world the page was created with GoLive. This tag can be turned off in the preferences, however.
Thanks... I'm seeing I may be in for some extra work. It's a new client with a limited budget on this project. I want to preserve the relationship.
In this scenario, what would the workflow be for specifying that a heading is <h2> and applying a CSS style to all <h2> headings?
I know how to do this manually... but if the client builds the page and I then go in and edit the code, or give them the code, to change a heading to <h2>, how does someone who doesn't know html then use GoLive to generate the proper external CSS style for the heading... or will I need to go in and edit the CSS file too?
If they highlight the specific text you want as an h2 or h1 or whatever, there are style drop down menus at the top left corner of the working window that allow them to specify which h-tag to assign to the selected text.
If you could get them to format the page roughly with h tags, you could just assign an external style sheet to it with the usual markup. GoLive DOES just spit out plain ol' text html pages. If you give your client regular html template files, they can open them in GoLive.
Honestly, the program doesn't bite. ;) We're not talking about someone trying to use PowerPoint's "export HTML" feature... ::shudder::
Visit either of the sites listed in my profile to see some GoLive code with css integrated. (Excuse the clutter at the mivox site... it's halfway through a rebuild, and constantly under construction... ;) )
However, I wouldn't recommend leaving the CSS generation up to a beginner. ;) I'd write it for them if I were you.
>>mark up the pages so that it is very clear what content belongs where<<
Eric - I'm not sure I fully understand what you mean by this. From a posting of yours on another thread, I assume you mean go through the text and indicate hierarichal structure... things like heading, bold, etc... or are you also talking about a very basic table layout structure as well? The designer for this client is primarily a graphics person, so I'd expect that I'd be getting a basic page template that takes care of graphics placement, with holes for the text.
..If they highlight the specific text you want as an h2 or h1 or whatever, there are style drop down menus at the top left corner of the working window that allow them to specify which h-tag to assign to the selected text.<<
Thanks... this is exactly the specific functionality I need to know. It's hard for me to ask the client and get this type of feedback.
>>Honestly, the program doesn't bite.<<
A year or so ago, I optimized a site that had been written in FrontPage, and I'm still a little skittish.... ;)
Thanks for all input. I will check out mivox's site.
A year or so ago, I optimized a site that had been written in FrontPage, and I'm still a little skittish....
I feel for you. I did the same (using GoLive for the "repairs"), and the only thing I've ever seen worse was when I tried to edit a "site" exported out of PowerPoint. ;)
One thing I almost forgot... Tell them NEVER EVER EVER EVER to TOUCH the "layout grid" "layout text box" "floating box" or "horizontal spacer" objects. Just not to even think about using them... ::shudder::