Dreamweaver 2 for Windows and Macintosh:
Visual QuickStart Guide

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Type of Book

book coverTitle: Dreamweaver 2 for Windows and Macintosh: Visual QuickStart Guide
Author: J. Tarin Towers
Publisher: Peachpit Press http://www.peachpit.com
Publication Date: 1999
Pages: 400
ISBN: 0-201-35435-7
Price: $19.99

Dreamweaver 2 for Windows and Macintosh: Visual QuickStart Guide is a visually rich guide to Macromedia's Dreamweaver 2, a WYSIWYG authoring tool which supports style sheets, DHTML, JavaScript, table-making, and other features. The Visual QuickStart Guides are clearly written visually-oriented guides that walk you step-by-step through the features of a program. They aren't just for beginners. Once you've learned a program, you can use the guides to refresh your memory on specific topics as your work. The Peachpit Press site is one of my favorites. It is, like its books, visually appealing, and chock full of information, tips, tutorials, and interviews with authors.
User Level
While this book is really excellent for all level users, we assume that anyone attempting to use Dreamweaver would be an Advanced Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced computer user. This book will give anyone a thorough grounding in Dreamweaver's capabilities.

Dreamweaver Basics--Both Chapter 1 and 2 introduce you to the Dreamweaver interface.

Chapter 1: Getting Started--covers Dreamweaver terminology; Document window; customizing the Document window; invisible elements; HTML Inspector; selecting objects; Properties Inspector; Launcher; and Object Palette.

Chapter 2: Basic Web Pages--covers opening and creating HTML files; saving your work or a copy of a file; page properties; colors and web pages; modifying the page background; setting the text colors; previewing in a browser; and printing from the browser window.

Web Page Basics--Chapters 3 and 4 talk about text and all the things you can do with it, and Chapter 5 describes linking in more detail. Chapter 6 gets you on your way with images.

Chapter 3: Working with Text--covers placing text; changing font size; using text styles; physical and logical text styles; changing font face and color; comments; find and replace; and checking spelling.

Chapter 4: Paragraphs and Layouts--covers paragraphs versus line breaks; paragraph properties; div and span; break properties; headings; preformatted text; formatting lists; text alignment; indenting text; nonbreaking space; special characters in HTML; and horizontal rules.

Chapter 5: Working with Images--covers placing or selecting an image; Properties inspector; image formats and properties; appearance properties; layout properties; page loading properties; and image rollovers.

Chapter 6: Working with Links and URLs--covers absolute vs. relative links; making links and making relative links; using named anchors; aiming targets; changing link colors; and smart linking strategies.

Tables, Frames, and Forms--Chapters 7-9 are what most folks consider the "intermediate" range in HTML--7 is tables, 8 is frames, and 9 is forms.

Chapter 7: Working with Tables--covers setting up tables; adding content to a table; changing table size and layout; adjusting the table size; creating a table within a table; working with table borders; adjusting table spacing and adjusting content spacing; sorting table contents; and coloring tables.

Chapter 8: Using Frames--covers frames and navigation; setting up a frames page; creating frames by dragging; Frames inspector; modifying the frame page layout; deleting a frame; nested framesets; setting column and row sizes and content pages; creating content within a frame; saving your work and saving the frameset page; frameset options; setting margins; targeting links; naming frames; setting a base target; creating no-frames content; and inline frames.

Chapter 9: Filling Out Forms--covers creating and formatting forms; adding form objects; names and values; and making it go.

Dynamic HTML--Then we get to the Dynamic part of the book. The components of DHTML are covered in Chapters 10-13. Chapter 10 covers Cascading Style Sheets. In Chapter 11, you will learn about layers and all that goes with them, including absolute positioning. Chapter 12 covers Behaviors or JavaScript actions. And Chapter 13 discusses Timelines, Dreamweaver's DHTML animation tool.

Chapter 10: Stylin' with Style Sheets--covers how style sheets work; the styles palette; kinds of style sheets; creating a style; defining new selectors; linked and imported style sheets; editing style sheets; applying style classes; conflict styles; style definitions; type, background, block box, border, and list attributes; extensions.

Chapter 11: Layers and Positioning--covers CSS positioning; X and Y coordinates; absolute vs. relative positioning; positioning properties; layers inspector; grids and rulers; creating, selecting, deleting, and renaming layers; choosing tags; moving and resizing layers; nesting and overlapping layers; changing layer visibility; stacking order; content and layers; layers and styles; clipping area; content overflow; setting a background; Dreamweaver's layer preferences; Netscape's layer tags; converting layers to tables; and using a tracing image.

Chapter 12: Behavior Modification--covers JavaScript concepts; adding behaviors; common objects; event handlers; common actions; display status message; popup message; open browser window; check plug-in; swap image; control sound; control Shockwave or Flash; show-hide layers; validation form; change property; adding new scripts and behaviors; and drag layer.

Chapter 13: Drawing Timelines--covers what Timelines can do; Timelines inspector; dissecting the Timelines inspector; adding a layer to a Timeline; Timeline actions; moving layers; keyframes; showing and hiding layers; changing the Z-index; changing layer dimensions; adding an image to a Timeline; adding a behavior to a Timeline; making Timelines go; loop and rewind; adding and removing frames; using multiple Timelines; deleting objects; changing objects; and deleting a Timeline.

Site Management--Chapter 14 discusses three ways of automating common tasks in Dreamweaver: libraries, templates, and custom objects. Libraries are a site management tool, whereas you use custom objects to modify Dreamweaver's Insert functions. The new template feature in Dreamweaver 2 allows you to create versatile templates with read-only design features, and you can update the design of pages based on these templates just by updating the template file. In Chapter 15, you will learn everything you need to know about putting plug-ins and other multimedia content on your site. And Chapter 16 is all about site management with Dreamweaver's Sites window, a full-fledged FTP client.

Chapter 14: Libraries, Templates and Custom Objects--covers libraries; creating a library item; adding an existing library item to a page; editing, renaming, deleting, and re-creating library items; updating your site; using server-side includes; inserting SSIs; changing SSI viewing options; dream templates; template tools; creating templates; setting template page properties; using styles and JavaScript in templates; setting editable regions; creating pages based on a template; detaching a template from a page; attaching an existing page to a template; using editable regions; highlights for templates; renaming and deleting templates; editing and updating; exporting as XML; and custom objects.

Chapter 15: Plug-ins and Active Content--covers using sound files; sound file parameters; Netscape plug-ins; Shockwave and Flash; Java Applets; ActiveX; and extra parameters.

Chapter 16: Managing Your Web Sites--covers Sites window; setting up a local site; connecting to a remote site; editing and deleting local sites; site window tips and shortcuts; using site maps; drawing links in the site map; and site FTP preferences.

Personal Comments
Dreamweaver for Windows & Macintosh: Visual QuickStart Guide is an excellent book for anyone interested in learning Dreamweaver 2. I used it to learn the program for the review of Dreamweaver 2. The book that comes with the program is fine, but I really liked the clear and easy to follow manner of this book.
Graphics: Illustrator 8& Adobe Photoshop
Web Page Editor: Macromedia Dreamweaver 2.0
Scanner: Hewlett Packard ScanJet 6250C Professional Series

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