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Old 12-08-2006, 01:22 PM   #1
Michael Rowley
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Default Anyone tried WebPlus?

Has anyone tried Serif's WebPlus? It's a poor man's version of a much better-known program for designing Web pages, and consequently much cheaper, but I've heard it's rather good.

   
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Old 12-11-2006, 03:58 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Michael Rowley View Post
Has anyone tried Serif's WebPlus? It's a poor man's version of a much better-known program for designing Web pages, and consequently much cheaper, but I've heard it's rather good.
I haven't used it but "W3C Standard HTML Output" (and not a single reference to CSS) suggests to me it will create old-fashioned HTML with (at best) inline and embedded CSS and at worst fully representational HTML with table-based layout. And that quote is for the latest version 10 - not the more prominently advertized free version 6 which if you dig a bit refers to HTML 3.2 and 4 (and not to standards at all). It would not encourage me to try it.

"Rather good" in what respect? (Pretty-looking pages no longer equates with "good" these days. The age-old "no need to learn HTML" they tout makes me fear the worst.)

   
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Old 12-11-2006, 07:09 AM   #3
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Marjolein:

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suggests to me it will create old-fashioned HTML with (at best) inline and embedded CSS
I'm glad you found the WebPlus 10 advertisement (not given directly by Google yesterday), but I'm not very impressed by 'suggests to me', because I was expecting some comments on the hands-on exprience of the experts. The fact that Serif doesn't mention CSS might only be an indication that 'CSS' doesn't mean much to most people (including me); on the other hand, you might be right. Has CSS nothing to do with the W3C standards?

   
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Old 12-11-2006, 08:26 AM   #4
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Has CSS nothing to do with the W3C standards?
It does, but not with HTML standards which that bit is specifically referring to. I found it significant that the info for both version 6 and version 10 mention HTML, where the former mentions versions (3.2 and 4) and the latter even mentions the W3C standards for it (without specifying any version!) but neither mentions CSS (or "style" or "stylesheets").

Why don't you try it and see (and show us) what it generates?

I'm betting table-based layout with a mix of presentational markup and a smattering of inline CSS. Prove me wrong.

Don't expect "hands-on" experience from me since I cannot work with anything WYSIWYG - I just don't know how to use those things: I think in code (and use the plain text editor here, of course).

   
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Old 12-11-2006, 08:35 AM   #5
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Michael: I doubt any "experts" here would use it: it's obviously aimed at someone who knows no HTML or CSS, and is therefore unlikely to be flexible enough for anything other than a simple brochure site: that is not based on experience of this piece of s/w - but on all products of the same kind that I have tried and discarded.

Eventually (or sooner!), one comes across something that either doesn't work, or cannot be added, without learning HTML and CSS: best to bite the bullet from the start really, unless you are making a "home page" for fun.

It might be the exception that proves the rule of course: PagePlus is certainly a capable DTP program for the price: but looking at the way the tutorial is written - the web program uses the same DTP metaphor - talking about pages with grids, text frames, articles etc. Not a good sign of modern fluid code: in the current incarnation of HTML there is no concept of linked text containers for instance (AFAIK). So, it must be done either with table layouts (the only possibility for the 3.2 option), or absolute positioning (possible to an extent in 4.0 - but tends to fall apart easily.)

I think Marjolein has a point!
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Old 12-11-2006, 10:07 AM   #6
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Lois:

Although you and Marjolein both have a point to make, my question is really this: I have read one very good review of WebPlus 10, which, I suppose, was written by someone who knew what they were talking about; so, was he talking through his hat when he said it wasn't up to DreamWeaver's standards, but pretty good for beginners?

   
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Old 12-11-2006, 10:25 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Michael Rowley View Post
I have read one very good review of WebPlus 10, which, I suppose, was written by someone who knew what they were talking about; so, was he talking through his hat when he said it wasn't up to DreamWeaver's standards, but pretty good for beginners?
How can we know when we don't know what review where you're talking about and who wrote it?

   
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Old 12-11-2006, 11:39 AM   #8
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Marjolein:

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How can we know when we don't know what review where you're talking about and who wrote it?
I was directing the question at anyone that knows the program from at least some practical experience of it, and you've ruled yourself out. But the review a couple of months ago, and I haven't kept the magazine; it was in either Computer Shopper (UK) or PC Plus, and since you would remember an article in PC Plus (would you not?), I presume it was in Computer Shopper.

I'm surprised that you should assume, without evidence, that the tenth and latest version of WebPlus does not rely on cascading styles sheets, which are hardly a new idea, even if Web designers were a bit slow taking to it. If it doesn't, of course I'm not interested.

   
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Old 12-11-2006, 12:02 PM   #9
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Well, the fact that the Serif page I looked at, which listed the features in WebPlus, does not use CSS for layout, but falls back on tables instead, is not promising in its support of CSS.

I think that by the nature of DTP-oriented web applications tables are required. That's why so many sites today still depend on them.
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Old 12-11-2006, 12:17 PM   #10
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Michael:

Until you hear from a user these reviews offer more information:

This review of WebPlus 9 in Computer Buyer gives 4 (out of 6) stars but mentions problems for beginners.

Another review of WebPlus 9 in PCPlus gives 3.5 (out of 5) stars

And this review of WebPlus 9 in WebUser actually mentions CSS (which in that version is inline, not external to the HTML pages).

And the review of WebPlus 10 at WebUser.

This brief review of WebPlus 10 in IT Reviews does not mention CSS, but does say this at the end:
It's a bit of a victim of its own success, though; it now takes nearly as long to learn as the heavyweights it was original intended to undermine through its simplicity.
A Google on «WebPlus 10 review» will deliver more reviews and discussions.

   
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