[thelist] Resend: Comments on Dreamweaver Contribute - was gotta vent

Tara Cleveland evolt at taracleveland.com
Wed May 12 13:55:07 CDT 2004

Ken Moore wrote:
>I am thinking about suggesting Contribute to several nonprofit 
>organizations to supply content to their own sites. I would welcome 
>comments from anyone who has used it and/or helped not-technical 
>users to use it.

I have a couple of non-profit clients with sites using Contribute and 
so far they have loved it. I've found it not too difficult to do 
non-complicated dynamic stuff - basically I hide it all from the user 
in includes. I've also done two of the sites using (for the most 
part) a lot of CSS and CSS layouts. This can get quite tricky with 
Contribute though. If you want any tips let me know and I'll send 
them on.

One of the clients started with Dreamweaver and found the learning 
curve too high, so I suggested Contribute and he's very happy with 
it. In fact I'm doing a second site for him in Contribute.

I haven't had many problems with support - I've had more support 
troubles using other CMS-type programs. I really like that I can 
modify the Help tab XML files with specific instructions for my 
clients - that helps with cutting down support calls.

I don't even use Dreamweaver btw. I just take the Dreamweaver "this 
is the template" code and paste it into the right place in my BBEdit 
text/html file.  So if you aren't into Dreamweaver, don't let that 
stop you from creating "Dreamweaver templates" to put into Contribute.

Now I just have to keep reminding the client (aka beating him over 
the head) that "all purple bold text! all the time!"  is probably not 
a great design choice (he's a client but he's also my dad, so I'm 
allowed to yell at him ;-). I have, however, learned a lesson from 
that, and on my next Contribute project I hid virtually all the 
styles from the client so that they can't mess about too much with 
crazy text styles.

If you want to take a peek:




Both of the sites are (so far) fairly small and uncomplicated. It's 
great for small clients that may not be allowed to put up a 
server-side CMS app (like the Professor's site) or that want 
something that is simple and fairly configurable. I wouldn't hesitate 
to use Contribute again in a similar situation.


Tara Cleveland
Web Design and Consulting

More information about the thelist mailing list