Dreamweaver is one of the most popular web design tools out there, mostly because of its pleasant, easy-to-use interface, its sheer diversity and its compatibility enhancements. The user base of the software is equally impressive, with users of Dreamweaver being anything from hardcore web designers to simple personal use. Many people have drawn the conclusion that Dreamweaver is the best web design programme available. Unlike Microsoft FrontPage, for example, it offers greater compatibility whereas FrontPage is heavily biased to creating websites that will be viewed in Internet Explorer. Dreamweaver has also proven popular for those who want to design a single web site for a very specific purpose, rather than just being used by professional web designers.
There are a number of reasons why you should consider Dreamweaver to design your website. It has become far more popular in recent years than FrontPage and all other web design software, and for good reason too. An attractive and reasonably priced software package, Dreamweaver is user-friendly and not too daunting for beginners to get into. With a neatly laid out interface, it also boasts some powerful features. One of the reasons why the creators of Dreamweaver keep coming out with this great software and constantly improving it, is because there are such a diverse base of customers and thus, the developers continue tirelessly to seek ways to make the software as adaptable as possible.
Web design once began with two main types of interfaces for building web pages. There was always the complex coding software which was used by professionals and required a great deal of time and commitment to learn. Such software was designed for web designers who were familiar with the workings of the underlying code beneath any website. Eventually, as the Internet and web development industry started to advance along with the demand for more straight forward and less time consuming methods of web design, visual based web editors appeared. Dreamweaver is, of course, one of these. The visual tools use a similar method to a spreadsheet or word processor. Such software was originally very basic, adopting a simple WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) concept and was popular for non-professionals and people building simple personal websites. Professionals until recent years always stayed away from such programmes, including Dreamweaver, since the code that they produced was cumbersome and inefficient.
Around a decade ago, the designers of Dreamweaver, Macromedia (now Adobe), decided to start to adapt their software towards more professional markets while maintaining the relatively straightforward and easy to use interface and functionality. Over the years they dramatically improved the way the programme handles the HTML code it creates, eventually reaching a point where Dreamweaver-created websites were just as efficient, if not more so, than traditionally programmed sites. The functionality of Dreamweaver is indeed extensive and it includes a number of tools which generate industry standard scripting languages like ColdFusion, ASP, ASP.Net and PHP. While some of these features were originally only available in a more expensive version called UltraDev, now they have all been integrated into the standard version allowing for a single software package that is great for all types of users from beginners to professionals.
Dreamweaver even has the integrated ability to help with web design collaboration, allowing multiple designers to work on the same site without confusing each other. This can be a great advantage for creating larger websites. Dreamweaver CS4 is the most recent version of the software and comes with a number of new features including Live View. With an abundance of improvements and new features added with every release of the software, Dreamweaver is constantly updated to provide the latest and greatest features to the user.
Although there are a great number of web design options out there, Dreamweaver tends to be the most obvious choice for beginners and professionals alike. It does not take so long to learn as the traditional methods of web design and, additionally, because it is so popular, there are an abundance of tutorials out there on the Internet which will help you to get started and discover the true extent of the power of this software.