Visual Web Design with Artisteer 4 Pt2
After building the skeleton for the backend of my On-Line Portfolio with the links to the content folders I had another flash. Needing a mail contact form for the contact page lead me to another conclusion. I could sort out the .ASP script and other issues related to the form, but what about site stats and spammers? The more I thought about it, the more sense it made to take a different approach
What if I just rebuilt the portfolio front end as a WP CMS site (page as opposed to post based)? Then I’d have access to all the WP tools and plugins for the contact form and any other ‘nice to haves’ from the WP plugin universe. A functional CMS platform like WordPress is built and maintained via many many person hours. Leveraging an ongoing and vibrant community like WP accesses lots of folks’ creativity and certainly promises to save lots of time in the process.
Testing the concept
Today I used another domain from my collection to do the following:
- Output the Artisteer portfolio template as a WP theme with the content in place.
- DL and installed latest WP (3.6.1) to the test Dom.
- Upload the portfolio WP theme.
- Test links to pages from menu.
- Revise it once in Artisteer (Added menu to HP).
- Add a few links to content to several pages.
- Access the links to validate the test. AOK!
WP DB (Data Base) Issue
As it turns out an auto install of WP through my Plesk control panel will try to use the same DB for the portfolio install since it’s in a subdomain of the same webspace (IP). Not good for data security and segmentation, so I will have to install a WP instance manually with a different MSQL DB. Why? the last time I tried to install a 2nd WP instance in the same webspace, attempted data recovery failed due to poor data segmentation. Today. I will create a 2nd subdomain and use it for my WP base online portfolio. The detailed instructions for a WP install are conveniently located on WordPress.org.
It seems unlikely that I will develop any more web sites in the traditional way with tools such as Dream Weaver CS6. The combination of the the efficiency and flexibility gained by using a visual design tool such as Artisteer 4 along the the community support provided by WP and virtually all the other major CMS development tools makes this decision a “no-brainer”. All it took for the conversion of the Artisteer web template to WP format was about 30 min. work, most of which was testing the upload and adding the menu to the HP in Artisteer.
Of course once the WP is installed on the server, I could still use DW CS6 to fiddle with the theme, but experience tells me that approach would:
- Take more time to study the HTML and make the fixes.
- Create a discrepancy between the Artisteer project and the live site.
- Increase points of failure with the manual coding.
Note: if one has extra programming resources available to work on refining a prototype created with Artisteer, then all the DW CS6 tools are available for use. Meanwhile, I’ll be moving along to my next project.