Wednesday , February 21 2024
For the user who wants to gain a solid Dreamweaver foundation.

Video Training Review: Dreamweaver CS4: Learn by Video from Peachpit Press in Association with Adobe Press

Dreamweaver CS4: Learn By Video is a complete training program that was created by the Graz, Austria company Video2Brain for Peachpit Press in association with Adobe Press. The aim of this course of instruction is to teach you not only the fundamentals of Dreamweaver, but also give you the ability to prepare for taking the Web Communication Using Adobe Dreamweaver CS4 exam. Video2Brain is an Adobe Certified Training Provider.

Dreamweaver CS4: Learn By Video contains 12 hours of video that is presented by Ruth Stryker and Candyce Mairs. Included with this system are lesson files, assessment quizzes and review materials. Also included with the DVD is a 120-page book that provides a topic-by-topic guide to the video. The video has a unique interface that allows you to jump to any topic as well as tag individual topics for later review. The project files are included on the disk so that you can practice along with the video. There are also review questions to help to reinforce what you have learned.

Lessons 1-3 provide a refresher course to HTML coding, an introduction to Dreamweaver, and a quick start to features in Dreamweaver. In these lessons you will not only review what you need to know about HTML, but will also explore the Dreamweaver interface, working with pre-built layouts, adding images, and modifying styles.

Lesson 4, "Planning your Website," begins by defining project management and what you need to do properly plan for the site that you are designing. This includes setting up a project plan, how to maintain consistency, working with browsers, and site testing. Lesson 5, "Defining a Site in Dreamweaver," shows you the benefits of using Dreamweaver to define a site, how to use both the basic and advanced tabs to define the site, and how to work with the files panel.

Lesson 6, "Creating a New Web Page," next looks at how to create and save a Web page. Here you will learn the basics about Web page creation including assigning a title and inserting metatags. Lesson 7, "Adding Text Content," takes your Web page and will show you how to add various forms of text-based content. This includes standard text, how to set headings, creating lists, and the use of special characters.

Lesson 8, "Formatting Text with CSS," introduces the use of Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) and how to set properties. Then it shows you how to create and link to a CSS file and other things that you can do with a style sheet. Lesson 9, "Images and Rich Media," now shows you how to work with images and video. These include Photoshop Smart Objects, Flash files, and Flash Video.

Lesson 10, "Creating Links," examines best practices to linking to other places on the Internet, how best to link to Web pages on the same site, how to use image mapping, how to create a rollover image, and ways for inserting a navigation bar. Lesson 11, "Page Layout with CSS," takes a look at why you would want to use CSS for page layout, how to use it, and then how to create styles to use in various situations.

Lesson 12, "Tables," describe the use of tables in your site. You will see how to create and format a table, how to use CSS for formatting the table, how to import tabular data, modify rows and columns, as well as aligning your table. Lesson 13, "Forms," now looks at creating forms, the form elements, how to transmit form data, and use Spry for form validation.

Lesson 14, "Testing," your site includes spell checking, finding broken links, previewing pages in the browser, checking for browser compatibility, and gathering user feedback. Lesson 15, "Reusable Content," examines the template and library features of Dreamweaver, how to create each of them, as well as how to use them.

Lesson 16, "Publishing & Maintenance," finishes up with managing files, entering Web server information, publishing files, working with the files panel, and checking in/out files. There are also a number of bonus videos that cover creating CSS-based menus, exporting Fireworks to CSS, and working with Srpy.

One thing that is noticeable about the training in Dreamweaver CS4: Learn By Video, is that it is focused on providing the information that you need to pass the Dreamweaver exam and therefore touches on the main points of the product.

The goal with Dreamweaver CS4: Learn By Video is to make you a better Dreamweaver user so that if you want to take the Adobe Certified Expert test, you will have the skills to pass it. It is therefore very focused toward the beginning to novice users and is much wider in its scope than it is deep. That is, it gives you what you need to know.

That said, Dreamweaver CS4: Learn By Video is also very applicable for someone who knows Dreamweaver and wants to make sure that they focus on the main points that they need to for the test. If you have been working with Dreamweaver and are relatively self-taught, this will make sure you have what you need to know. If you want to learn Dreamweaver, or if you need to get up to speed to take the exam then I can very highly recommend this course.

About T. Michael Testi

Photographer, writer, software engineer, educator, and maker of fine images.

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