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Using Dreamweaver will give you some basic skills and experience but it will not get you into a programming language. If there is some programming required for your idea then pick up a good book on the programming language of your choice.
I would be very wary of spending 2 years of your life on a course in the hope that it will equip you for your plan. Get some experience now and test out the water.
Can't say squat about Dreamweaver... still using Homesite4. :)
If you want to do it by yourself start learning by yourself.
(2 Years? Thats sounds waaaay to much).
I think PHP is most described website language on the net. There are
a lot of tutorials, help sites and forums wher you can ask for help
for free, if you would stuck on something.
(My route from begginer was - I read a book, started to program, asked on forums,
You wrote that your project can take a lot of space.
Later when you will know some programing language you will be able to use
[aws.amazon.com...] ,specialy S3-simple storage service.
Amazon is expesive solution compared to normal webhosts,
but has at least one advantage, you dont pay monthly for host just sitting idle.
So you can start small and grow big, eventualy move to cheaper host.
Wish you success in your project.
Type out a website plan:
You have no idea how useful this can be. All to often people have an idea and just open up FrontPage or Dreamweaver and start building. The problem being later on they realise they need to make a fundamental change. If this is a large project this can cost you weeks or even months of development time.
Work out exactly what skills you will need to put it together:
As has been said before, buy books and read the forums. You can learn a lot in a short time period if you are prepared to stuffy. Don't just so a bit of learning and then go for the main site, you need to walk before you can run. a php programmer has to be able to print hello world on a screen before they can build a complicated web application.
Do small scale experiments on your host. Build small sites that are practical lessons and will better equip you to tackle larger projects.
If you find any aspect of building the site to be to much for you, you can always pay someone to do it for you. You don't have to give away your secrets to a third party, you can simply have someone do a little bit for you, maybe someone else doing another part. For example I recently wanted to build a VB.net app, I started to hit problems, to save time I hired a freelancer to do one section of the app. I also hired a 2nd programmer to do another part. Then I got the code from both programmers, plugged it into my user interface and had both parts of the program working.
Before you can release you need a period of beta testing. This can either be a group of friends/family members who have restricted access to the site, or do a soft launch and just let people find the site and use it. You can use this period to iron out any bugs that may be found.
There isn't an easy answer, it all depends on how much time you want to spend leering before you start to develop the actual site.
Hope this gives you some ideas.
My project definatly wont have the audience that facebook or hotmail has,
Sounds like you have vid/music in mind. Tough row to hoe. Bandwidth will be the killer/cost. You're in the right place to get preliminary advice, but if you are NOT a programmer, html coder, or Flash kind of guy you will need specific help to get your idea off the ground. mack said it best (in short) get a business plan in place, then find the tools/people to get it done.
If you decide to hire a coder, make sure you are very clear with them about what you want. Get as technical as possible. I also recommend that you hire a graphic designer to make a layout of the homepage. That way you're not leaving it up to the coder to design your logo, pick your colors, etc.
Just my two cents.
It's not clear if you need a nice layout or custom programming, or both. If you're unwilling to hire out the design work, you might consider just getting a premade design template. You should be able to find nice stuff, inexpensively. It won't be unique, but you probably don't need unique when you start. As for any custom backend coding, definitely outsource that. You'll be two years just trying to write the code.
Also, 'friend's' telling you it's a great idea doesn't mean it is a good idea :). There's miles between people saying they like something, and them actually using something or paying for it. So be cautious.
To coordinate a couple of the previous posts, you really should consider your role in all this.
You can't be the great at everything, well unless you're me! (ducks) :)
Seriously though, even if you learn great coding skills, that's only part of the equation. You still need to work on design and graphics, that's an entirely different field. By trying to learn everything yourself you will be diluting your efforts greatly.
You would be advised to outsource at least some aspects of your project.
My only big concern is with bandwidth
1. You can offload bandwidth/storage in a variety of ways.
There's Amazon S3 as batto mantioned, or for video, Youtube or some such. Ask yourself if you can leverage some free/cheap resources. Remember, if you host it yourself, you need to have capacity sitting around unused 90% of the time for those few traffic spikes you get. If you can find a way to get that load off your server, you'll be way ahead.
2. Many people worry so much about scalability, that they never actually build anything.
The people who build the totally killer site that everyone is going to love often find that bandwidth isn't an issue because when all is said and done, not enough people on the web actually agrees that it's a totally killer awesome everyone loves it kind of site.
You might want to figure out how much bandwidth you would expect one user to use and figure out what happens if you scale that to 1000 users and so on so that you have some idea of whether your business model is reasonable. But it's just plain foolish to start out by building a system that scales to a million users before you even have any idea whether you can get six visitors. If the business model is sound, you can figure out scale when you have a proof of concept and it seems to be taking off.
Seriously though, get your plan written up, preferably with your webdev friend, and someone wiht statup experience. Then you have two main routes- bank loan and investor. The bank generally will not lend (even in good times) without any provable income. An investor will need to see a project in developement. Both will need a business plan, and both will tear it to pieces if it tends towards the optimisitic
The third route is a director loan. Think hard about this.
You're going to get nothing just because you've got a good idea. In fact, it's not that good of an idea because you have no experience, no measurement of the market, no proof of potential revenue, no experience (did I mention that already?), no traffic, no experience getting traffic, no webmarketing experience, nothing.
If you're looking to get an idea off the ground, you should build the following list:
- what do I have experience in
- what do I know really well
- what have I done before
- what do I know I already do better than others
And that, whether you like the results or not :) is where you should be looking to build your next great idea. Not trying to enter full scale into a business environment you're not familiar with that is full of sharks.
I've seen online business's ( my past competition) that have failed after blowing through $5,000,000- $14,000,000 on websites one could put together over a long week end with free CMS. The key is use the K.I.S.S principle