[thelist] can someone build a 100-page website with only HTML/CSS skill?

Zhang Weiwu zhangweiwu at realss.com
Tue Nov 11 22:24:13 CST 2008

Will wrote:
> The only drawback from your original rules is that using php will require
> her to set up a local dev environment and work from there. No big deal in
> the days of WAMP/MAMP stacks where you get the whole shebang at the click of
> an icon.
Sorry I am a bad English speaker : What you listed is the drawback I
describe if I use CMS (not PHP), the reason not to use PHP is a
different one: my trainee is not interested in and not good at
programming (she will start learning program if I strongly recommend it
but I don't want to), especially if someone learns arts and converted to
a web designer for artistic reason than technical reason.

Using CMS is not bad option for her, because most CMS I tried assumed
the designer not knowing how to program. This discussion quickly turned
from "should we use static design or CMS" to "Should we use static
design or PHP", and I didn't lead the turn. The turning point is the
discussion of static HTML couldn't easily highlight navigation levels,
then someone said PHP works for this case, then I explain why I try to
rule out writing PHP (I never tried to rule out using PHP-based CMS).
What the people cannot get is CMS is much easier than PHP for her. The
crowd of web-devs on the list took CMS a way to do PHP, but that's not
what it seems from an artist's view.
> http://www.mezzoblue.com/archives/2005/06/08/simple_templ/ is the first
> templating system I used and I was terrified of PHP. It's a total breeze and
> can be extended simply to include other header items like meta data or
> additional page specific css.
Hi. The quoted article have the same requirement as I have, to work on
mid-size websites without learning programming. But there is a small
problem, not vital but worth mentioning: if you following that article
you ends up with php files that doesn't have proper HTML structure
(because <head/> is included from another file). The problem with this
is you cannot use a HTML editor on it any more (e.g. Front-Page,
Kompozer). And HTML editor can often be handy if you are working with
tables (not the table used for layout, I mean the table to really hold
tabular data, e.g. datasheets, product price lists). I haven't yet find
a text editor that works easily with tabular data and handle cell
merge/add column easily. I say it's a small problem because one can use
HTML editor (Kompozer) and copy & paste the result to the headless
HTML-segment files opened in text editor.

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