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[edited by: tedster at 7:55 pm (utc) on July 9, 2009]
A CMS (Content Management System) approaches from the other direction. All the code is done and ready for you to add content. You can skin the CMS to make it make it look unique. There are lots of modules of code already written and tested that will get you moving quickly.
Publisher will give you a good looking page. You can place elements where ever you want, add text and decorate the text and you will get a good looking output.
The problem is the code that does that is meant for printed output. You determine the output size when you start the project. It produces lots of code to make sure that the page stays good looking.
When you publish to the web, you don't know how your work will be viewed. Big screen, small screen, what ever browser. Web design tools give you flexibility to properly render the output.
IF you are going to do serious work, then get away from the tables and learn how to use CSS to position and decorate the page(font size and look, backgrounds, positioning)
A great place to learn coding is the W3C Schools [w3schools.com]
In NVU Background images are off the format menu. Additionally table cells can have their own backgrounds.
If you are coming from a DTP/Design background and you work on the Mac however then IMHO there is no better website and HTML page creation software than Freeway from Softpress. This is a bit like QuarkXpress for web pages, your designs are stored in Freeway format and only rendered into HTML and CSS when you publish the site. There is no HTML round trip. Folks used to knock Freeway because the code it produced was a bit idiosyncratic but now it produces clean code and pure CSS positioning and styling.
Just mt 2c.
What works on a printed page will not work on every screen.
The same can be said for EVERY so-called WYSIWYG editor on teh planet
What works on a given screen won't necessarily work on another screen. And it doesn't matter if the page was coded in Notebook, by FrontPage, or by a CMS.
Text editors, authoring tools, and content management systems don't kill appearance or readability. People do. :-)
Text editors, authoring tools, and content management systems don't kill appearance or readability. People do. :-)I agree with as far as the 'People do' bit goes...
However, I have a hunch you might be implying that not ALL (so-called) WYSIWGs are guilty of crimes against htmlanity
If so, please name one 'authoring tool' that, by default, ensures cross-media/cross-platform compatibility
The browsers are not all playing in the same field. And some of those browsers are getting really long in the tooth and should have been interred years ago.
Plus, more types of devices are being used to browse the Web these days: not just computer displays of wildly varying resolutions (everything from netbooks to huge widescreen monitors), but also non-computer devices that range from smart phones to video-game consoles.
Today, "the Web" has nearly as broad a meaning as "print" does, and it's as unreasonable to expect every site to work with every device as it would be to expect WAR AND PEACE or a coffee-table photo book to provide a good reading experience when printed on a stack of business cards. People who expect every authoring tool, editing program, or CMS to work equally well with all devices and all formats need to fast forward from the 1990s to 2009.
Today, "the Web" has nearly as broad a meaning as "print" doesFor years, CSS has had media types [w3.org], including print
...it's as unreasonable to expect every site to work with every deviceErmmm... So?
I'd be inclined to think you were adding something of relevance if you said 'its unrealistic to expect every (human) author to consider every format and platform'
What would be really cool is a piece of software that lets you work on a contents page (what we do) and outputs dynamic, static, mobil, etc pages on demand.
Trouble is, formatting is only half the battle. It's like having a word processor that can automatically reformat a novel's dialogue into dialogue balloons for comic books: Just because that's possible doesn't mean dialogue extracted from novels works well in comic books.
My own pages are successful (and profitable) with readers who like information packaged as conversational text in a linear editorial format, but they'd be lousy if ported over to a mobile Web site or iPhone app. On the other hand, I know another very talented guy in my field whose Web pages are delivered as "hypertext stacks" with a paragraph or two of text per page. His site could work better as a mobile app than it does on a conventional desktop or laptop PC. Software isn't going to turn my site into one that's optimized for mobile devices or his site into one that's optimized for people who read.
IMHO, tools may be important to the owner, but they don't matter to the end user. The person who's reading my Web site doesn't care if it was produced with Notepad, Homesite, Dreamweaver, Frontpage, Wordpress, Drupal, or Joomla. And people who go on about how real men write HTML in text editors is like saying "Real men program in machine language": It just makes the complainers sound really, really old. :-)