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Thread: New guy here with a couple questions? Anyone use design extender?

  1. #1
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    New guy here with a couple questions? Anyone use design extender?

    Hello all, obviously this is my first post so don't cut into me to deep if I ask stupid questions I have worked a fair amount since high school (3 years ago) with web page design and html coding. I was in numerous web design classes using dreamweaver in high school, and I currently work for a company where one of my tasks is to help run the companies ecommerce site. So one could say that I have excellent understanding and basic to intermediate skills, but I am unpolished. Well I have undertaken my biggest project yet in creating a web site for someone. He is opening his own sports performance training business and I'm going to be creating his website. He wants it to go live at the end of this month, so I really need to get a move on it. I have already created a temporary home page using a free flash dreamweaver template that I have filled with content. While it looks pretty decent and flashy (no pun intended) I know that I have VERY limited control due to it being a template and predesigned. I came across a program called design extender by a company called webassist. It looks like a pretty nice program and offer a lot of features. However it is 399.99 which isn't exactly to cheap. Do you guys think that this would be a good investment for me at this point? Also this will not be a one and done deal, after I get this website going I would like to continue this as a side job.

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  3. #2
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    You're new, Zach. Understand that I am saying what I'm about to say in the nicest possible way there is to say it.

    You're not ready. It's that simple. You're not ready.

    One of the biggest misconceptions in web design is that "e-commerce is easy. You just set up a store and it makes money." Doesn't work that way. Never has worked that way. Never will work that way. You need to know the following things, and know them well, before even attempting an e-commerce site.

    1) HTML
    2) CSS
    3) Javascript (you will need this for forms and other purposes to make the checkout process as easy as possible for the majority of people).
    4) At least one server-side programming language...ASP, PHP, ASP.Net, Ruby on Rails, Java, whatever. You need at least one.
    5) How to solve real-world problems with the four skills above. Takes years to get to that point, even if you're someone who's naturally inclined to solve problems.

    None of these skills are basic Intermdiate skills, and I haven't even gotten into graphic design, marketing, copywriting, support if necessary, legal knowledge, and other issues. This is the absolute bare minimum. And as I pointed out, it takes years. If you're going to use Dreamweaver, decades. That thing will hold you back in ways you can't even imagine yet.

    Understand that what you're about to do is not just "the company's e-commerce website". It's someone's business. Someone's business is in your hands. That is a massive responsibility.

    That's why you're not ready. The best thing you can do is admit that to yourself and to the company, and see if they'll let you do this slowly and in stages and maybe acquire the knowledge along the way.
    If I've helped you out in any way, please pay it forward. My wife and I are walking for Autism Speaks. Please donate, and thanks.

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  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheGAME1264 View Post
    You're new, Zach. Understand that I am saying what I'm about to say in the nicest possible way there is to say it.

    You're not ready. It's that simple. You're not ready.

    One of the biggest misconceptions in web design is that "e-commerce is easy. You just set up a store and it makes money." Doesn't work that way. Never has worked that way. Never will work that way. You need to know the following things, and know them well, before even attempting an e-commerce site.

    1) HTML
    2) CSS
    3) Javascript (you will need this for forms and other purposes to make the checkout process as easy as possible for the majority of people).
    4) At least one server-side programming language...ASP, PHP, ASP.Net, Ruby on Rails, Java, whatever. You need at least one.
    5) How to solve real-world problems with the four skills above. Takes years to get to that point, even if you're someone who's naturally inclined to solve problems.

    None of these skills are basic Intermdiate skills, and I haven't even gotten into graphic design, marketing, copywriting, support if necessary, legal knowledge, and other issues. This is the absolute bare minimum. And as I pointed out, it takes years. If you're going to use Dreamweaver, decades. That thing will hold you back in ways you can't even imagine yet.

    Understand that what you're about to do is not just "the company's e-commerce website". It's someone's business. Someone's business is in your hands. That is a massive responsibility.

    That's why you're not ready. The best thing you can do is admit that to yourself and to the company, and see if they'll let you do this slowly and in stages and maybe acquire the knowledge along the way.
    I understand what you're saying ..but I think you may have misunderstood a couple things.. I do in fact work with an ecommerce portion of the website for the company that I work for now...I create html based pages for products and set pricing and other basic tasks..the person I'm making a site for has no affiliation with them and it iscompletely different ..they also are not even close to needing an ecommerce site yet, all I need to make for them is a 3-4 page website with text and images maybe a couple embedded videos ...it's nothing large scale

  5. #4
    Senior Member Vapr_Arts's Avatar
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    First off id really listen to the advice Game has given to you. He may be harsh at times but his advice is usually spot on.

    If you are using flash and creating individual pages for products rather than having the product pages created dynamically you are already showing you need to get caught up with the technology before attempting to learn more.

    You mention dreamweaver and templates? Are you doing any hand coding or just inserting content? Like the game said you will need to learn HTML, CSS, Js, and a server side language to even begin to comprehend the complexity of your project. Have it done in a month? Sorry but you should hope for a miracle, i believe you may have gotten in over your head without having such a short timeframe.


    Regretfully sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk during lunch and other breaks

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vapr_Arts View Post
    First off id really listen to the advice Game has given to you. He may be harsh at times but his advice is usually spot on.

    If you are using flash and creating individual pages for products rather than having the product pages created dynamically you are already showing you need to get caught up with the technology before attempting to learn more.

    You mention dreamweaver and templates? Are you doing any hand coding or just inserting content? Like the game said you will need to learn HTML, CSS, Js, and a server side language to even begin to comprehend the complexity of your project. Have it done in a month? Sorry but you should hope for a miracle, i believe you may have gotten in over your head without having such a short timeframe.


    Regretfully sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk during lunch and other breaks

    I appreciate your guys responses...Since this post I have changed from dreamweaver to wordpress..I currently have designed a 6 page website with numerous plugins and I've been learning more and more each day..right now I'm working on a domain name change so the site is offline but I will post a link once its up and you guys can tell me what you think about it

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vapr_Arts View Post
    First off id really listen to the advice Game has given to you. He may be harsh at times but his advice is usually spot on.

    If you are using flash and creating individual pages for products rather than having the product pages created dynamically you are already showing you need to get caught up with the technology before attempting to learn more.

    You mention dreamweaver and templates? Are you doing any hand coding or just inserting content? Like the game said you will need to learn HTML, CSS, Js, and a server side language to even begin to comprehend the complexity of your project. Have it done in a month? Sorry but you should hope for a miracle, i believe you may have gotten in over your head without having such a short timeframe.


    Regretfully sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk during lunch and other breaks
    Quote Originally Posted by TheGAME1264 View Post
    You're new, Zach. Understand that I am saying what I'm about to say in the nicest possible way there is to say it.

    You're not ready. It's that simple. You're not ready.

    One of the biggest misconceptions in web design is that "e-commerce is easy. You just set up a store and it makes money." Doesn't work that way. Never has worked that way. Never will work that way. You need to know the following things, and know them well, before even attempting an e-commerce site.

    1) HTML
    2) CSS
    3) Javascript (you will need this for forms and other purposes to make the checkout process as easy as possible for the majority of people).
    4) At least one server-side programming language...ASP, PHP, ASP.Net, Ruby on Rails, Java, whatever. You need at least one.
    5) How to solve real-world problems with the four skills above. Takes years to get to that point, even if you're someone who's naturally inclined to solve problems.

    None of these skills are basic Intermdiate skills, and I haven't even gotten into graphic design, marketing, copywriting, support if necessary, legal knowledge, and other issues. This is the absolute bare minimum. And as I pointed out, it takes years. If you're going to use Dreamweaver, decades. That thing will hold you back in ways you can't even imagine yet.

    Understand that what you're about to do is not just "the company's e-commerce website". It's someone's business. Someone's business is in your hands. That is a massive responsibility.

    That's why you're not ready. The best thing you can do is admit that to yourself and to the company, and see if they'll let you do this slowly and in stages and maybe acquire the knowledge along the way.
    I do appreciate what you guys told me last month..But Im not one to give up and web design is something I would like to seriously pursue so I kept up with designing the website. I published it live a couple weeks ago, I still have plenty to work on with it, but it made the owner, his wife, and plenty others very happy with the results...Here is the link Tank Elite Performance | Go Hard or Go HOME

  8. #7
    WDF Staff mlseim's Avatar
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    Zach ...

    First of all, you should never give up, and glad you didn't.

    From the very first post you made on Jan 6th, you were talking about creating your own site from scratch.

    It now appears you decided to use WordPress with the "Parabola" theme:
    https://wordpress.org/themes/parabola

    There is nothing wrong with that at all.

    If we had known you were OK with using WordPress instead of your own custom designed non-wordpress site, we would have certainly answered all of the subsequent posts much differently. There is a huge difference between using and customizing wordpress than designing/developing websites without wordpress.

    If your clients are happy with wordpress sites, then you're on track to make money by offering them wordpress sites, with customized features.

    If you still wish to actually learn server-side scripting and do some programming and development outside of wordpress, you should still pursue that.

    I just wanted to post this and clarify to others that we were not trying to crush your desire to create your own websites. The hard and honest advice was aimed at your desire to build sites without knowing at least PHP. Now you are using wordpress, so that changes everything. You don't necessarily have to know PHP or MySQLi at all.


  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by mlseim View Post
    Zach ...

    First of all, you should never give up, and glad you didn't.

    From the very first post you made on Jan 6th, you were talking about creating your own site from scratch.

    It now appears you decided to use WordPress with the "Parabola" theme:
    https://wordpress.org/themes/parabola

    There is nothing wrong with that at all.

    If we had known you were OK with using WordPress instead of your own custom designed non-wordpress site, we would have certainly answered all of the subsequent posts much differently. There is a huge difference between using and customizing wordpress than designing/developing websites without wordpress.

    If your clients are happy with wordpress sites, then you're on track to make money by offering them wordpress sites, with customized features.

    If you still wish to actually learn server-side scripting and do some programming and development outside of wordpress, you should still pursue that.

    I just wanted to post this and clarify to others that we were not trying to crush your desire to create your own websites. The hard and honest advice was aimed at your desire to build sites without knowing at least PHP. Now you are using wordpress, so that changes everything. You don't necessarily have to know PHP or MySQLi at all.
    Don't worry I'm not a very soft or emotional person lol hard and honest advice is the best advice and I was thankful for getting it...the decision to change to wordpress came from your guys advice after I realized that what I was doing is much more achievable and would do exactly what the client wants...I absolutely still want to learn as much as possible, I want to learn about PHP, CSS and the other topics in the earlier posts. My plan is to use wordpress now, and continue to use it until I have a good background and knowledge on everything I don't know now.
    Vapr_Arts likes this.

  10. #9
    WDF Staff mlseim's Avatar
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    Zach ... keep plowing ahead with PHP, MySQLi, JQuery, AJAX, etc.
    There are a ton of online tutorials and script examples, all for free.

    You might want to have your own shared webhost account (like GoDaddy, that type of account) just to play around with server-side scripting.

    EDIT:
    I've posted this before ... a great example, tutorial, and scripts to play with for learning MySQLi:
    https://www.codeofaninja.com/2011/12...-tutorial.html
    Last edited by mlseim; Feb 08th, 2015 at 01:30 PM.



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