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Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training
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Working with nested templates


Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training

with James Williamson

Video: Working with nested templates

Depending upon how complex your site's layout and structure is, one template might not be enough to build your entire site. Take our tour's Detail section, for example. It has a complex structure that will be used for every tour package. Now, even though it shares many of the same assets as the rest of the site, its structure is going to make creating pages from our existing template rather time-consuming to build. As you can see, we have all these individual tour package details that would take a long time to build individually by hand.
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  1. 2m 57s
    1. Welcome
      1m 8s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 49s
  2. 7m 50s
    1. What is Dreamweaver?
      3m 16s
    2. Learning web design
      2m 22s
    3. Current web standards
      2m 12s
  3. 43m 9s
    1. The Welcome screen
      4m 5s
    2. Windows and Mac interface differences
      2m 23s
    3. The Application toolbar
      4m 7s
    4. The Document toolbar
      4m 40s
    5. Arranging panels
      8m 19s
    6. Managing workspaces
      7m 32s
    7. The Properties Inspector
      5m 54s
    8. The Insert panel
      6m 9s
  4. 25m 45s
    1. Basic site structure
      3m 11s
    2. File naming conventions
      1m 49s
    3. Defining a new site
      4m 35s
    4. Managing sites
      4m 51s
    5. Managing files and folders
      6m 36s
    6. Working with browsers
      4m 43s
  5. 27m 21s
    1. Creating new documents
      5m 16s
    2. New document preferences
      3m 6s
    3. Setting accessibility preferences
      4m 56s
    4. Working with starter pages
      3m 46s
    5. Managing starter pages
      10m 17s
  6. 30m 2s
    1. Basic tag structure
      2m 15s
    2. Adding structure to text
      8m 20s
    3. Creating lists
      9m 59s
    4. Getting text into Dreamweaver
      5m 59s
    5. Importing Word documents
      3m 29s
  7. 1h 17m
    1. Understanding style sheets
      2m 16s
    2. The anatomy of a CSS rule
      1m 48s
    3. Setting CSS preferences
      6m 36s
    4. The CSS Styles panel
      10m 2s
    5. Controlling CSS through the Properties Inspector
      5m 14s
    6. Using the Code Navigator
      7m 21s
    7. Using CSS Enable
      6m 45s
    8. Understanding element selectors
      8m 11s
    9. Understanding class selectors
      8m 49s
    10. Understanding ID selectors
      5m 59s
    11. Understanding descendant selectors
      6m 51s
    12. Attaching external style sheets
      7m 44s
  8. 1h 47m
    1. Working with units of measurement
      7m 11s
    2. Declaring font families
      9m 39s
    3. Controlling font sizing
      9m 9s
    4. Controlling weight and style
      8m 0s
    5. Controlling line height
      8m 29s
    6. Controlling vertical spacing with margins
      12m 3s
    7. Controlling spacing with padding
      5m 39s
    8. Aligning text
      8m 26s
    9. Transforming text
      5m 36s
    10. Writing global styles
      15m 42s
    11. Writing targeted styles
      17m 37s
  9. 1h 32m
    1. Understanding image types
      5m 3s
    2. Managing assets in Dreamweaver
      12m 51s
    3. Setting image accessibility preferences
      4m 20s
    4. Setting external image editing preferences
      3m 52s
    5. Placing images on the page
      7m 37s
    6. Photoshop integration
      5m 54s
    7. Modifying Smart Objects
      5m 51s
    8. Alternate Photoshop workflows
      8m 8s
    9. Modifying image properties
      11m 14s
    10. Styling images with CSS
      7m 11s
    11. Using background graphics
      9m 3s
    12. Positioning background graphics
      11m 6s
  10. 55m 16s
    1. Link basics
      3m 37s
    2. Setting site linking preferences
      2m 14s
    3. Creating links in Dreamweaver
      11m 1s
    4. Absolute links
      5m 8s
    5. Using named anchors
      11m 19s
    6. Linking to named anchors in external files
      2m 44s
    7. Creating an email link
      5m 24s
    8. Creating CSS-based rollovers
      13m 49s
  11. 1h 34m
    1. CSS structuring basics
      2m 56s
    2. The Box Model
      13m 21s
    3. Understanding floats
      6m 53s
    4. Clearing and containing floats
      8m 56s
    5. Using relative positioning
      4m 8s
    6. Using absolute positioning
      7m 18s
    7. Creating structure with div tags
      12m 7s
    8. Styling basic structure
      10m 34s
    9. Creating a two-column layout
      10m 37s
    10. Using Live View and CSS Inspect
      7m 51s
    11. Using Browser Lab
      9m 39s
  12. 56m 22s
    1. Reviewing table structure
      7m 41s
    2. Importing tabular data
      5m 13s
    3. Creating accessible tables
      9m 56s
    4. Using thead and tbody tags
      4m 0s
    5. Basic table styling
      8m 45s
    6. Styling table headers
      7m 52s
    7. Styling column groups
      4m 22s
    8. Creating custom table borders
      5m 1s
    9. Styling table captions
      3m 32s
  13. 1h 43m
    1. How forms work
      3m 0s
    2. Reviewing form design
      3m 2s
    3. Creating accessible forms
      7m 33s
    4. Setting form properties
      4m 6s
    5. The fieldset and legend tags
      4m 32s
    6. Inserting text fields
      5m 58s
    7. Inserting list menu items
      5m 26s
    8. Inserting checkboxes
      7m 50s
    9. Inserting radio button groups
      6m 22s
    10. Inserting text areas
      4m 12s
    11. Inserting submit buttons
      3m 37s
    12. Basic form styling
      12m 0s
    13. Form element styling
      8m 52s
    14. Styling form layout
      11m 49s
    15. Adding form interactivity
      2m 47s
    16. Using Spry validation widgets
      12m 49s
  14. 1h 23m
    1. Planning for templates
      10m 51s
    2. Creating a new template
      10m 37s
    3. Using editable attributes
      13m 43s
    4. Creating optional regions
      6m 23s
    5. Creating new pages from a template
      9m 17s
    6. Applying templates to existing pages
      6m 9s
    7. Working with nested templates
      7m 56s
    8. Working with repeating regions
      12m 58s
    9. Modifying templates
      5m 41s
  15. 40m 14s
    1. Behaviors overview
      3m 47s
    2. Hiding and showing elements
      9m 18s
    3. Spry overview
      4m 4s
    4. Using Spry widgets
      11m 36s
    5. Adding Spry effects
      3m 6s
    6. Using the Widget Browser
      8m 23s
  16. 28m 18s
    1. Inserting Flash files
      5m 4s
    2. Setting properties for Flash
      6m 27s
    3. Dreamweaver and Flash integration
      6m 6s
    4. Encoding Flash video
      6m 10s
    5. Adding Flash video
      4m 31s
  17. 45m 28s
    1. Running site-wide reports
      6m 33s
    2. Checking for broken links
      5m 41s
    3. Checking for browser compatibility
      8m 3s
    4. Adding remote servers
      8m 0s
    5. Uploading files
      7m 20s
    6. Managing remote sites
      9m 51s
  18. 34s
    1. Goodbye

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Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training
15h 22m Beginner Apr 30, 2010

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training, Adobe Certified Instructor James Williamson explores the tools and techniques of Dreamweaver CS5, Adobe's web design and development software. This course covers both the ins and outs of Dreamweaver, as well as recommended best practices for crafting new web sites and files, the fundamentals of HTML and CSS, and how to ensure clean and accessible code. The course also includes how to use tools in Dreamweaver to create and style web pages, manage multiple sites, and add user interactivity with widgets and scripting. Exercise files are included with the course.

Topics include:
  • Defining and structuring a new site
  • Creating new web documents from scratch or from templates
  • Adding and formatting text
  • Understanding style sheet basics
  • Placing and styling images
  • Creating links to internal pages and external web sites
  • Controlling page layout with CSS
  • Building and styling forms
  • Reusing web content with templates
  • Adding interactivity
  • Working with Flash and video
James Williamson

Working with nested templates

Depending upon how complex your site's layout and structure is, one template might not be enough to build your entire site. Take our tour's Detail section, for example. It has a complex structure that will be used for every tour package. Now, even though it shares many of the same assets as the rest of the site, its structure is going to make creating pages from our existing template rather time-consuming to build. As you can see, we have all these individual tour package details that would take a long time to build individually by hand.

So in those cases, you can create what's called a nested template. Nested templates allow you to create a more specific template based off of your global template. Updating your global template would still in turn update all of your nested templates, giving you that single file update control that makes templates so attractive in the first place. In this movie, we'll take our global template and create a nested template for our Tour Details section. So I actually have the tour_detail_ backpack_reference file and this is the page that we are going to as a reference for building our nested template.

Now, the first step in building a nested template is the same as building any new page off of a template. You just go to File and choose New. We want to do new Page From Template. We're going to be using our main_ template that's in the Explore California site. And again, you want to double check and make sure Update page when template changes is checked. It's really important for this workflow. I'm going to go ahead and hit Create and there is our brand new page. And just like when we are creating new pages from our template, we'll do a little bit of copying and pasting.

Before we do that, however, we can go ahead and set the basic structure of the page. Now remember, this is going to be a template designed only to build pages within the Tours section. So we can go ahead and hardwire a lot of that structure up front so that we don't have to build it every single time we build a new page within the Tours section. So regionID is going to change to Tours and it will always be that for this particular template. I can also go up to Modify and modify my Template Properties and go ahead and set a few of these properties that are going to be specific to the Tours section.

bodyClass will remain as hasCrumbs. breadcrumb will be visible. I am going to show that. Now, here's another thing. Notice that we have Allow nested template to control this. That means if we wanted to, this nested template that we're about to build could control that template property as to whether it's visible or not. Well, all of the Tours pages are going to need the breadcrumb and the Tours sub-navigation displayed and the tours listed as current. So frankly, in this case, we don't need to allow nested templates to control this.

But if you did have a property that was going to change from page to page within any subdirectory, you could go ahead and do that and that would allow the nested template to control it. You can see it has a little value here that says pass through and that would enable those pages to control that. I am going to turn that off however. I am going to make sure breadcrumb is showing. Now, I am going to change the breadcrumb here. I am going to go to All Tours, and again, I am going to make this link go to tours.htm. And since that's in another region I will be able to add more breadcrumbs as I construct pages in my subdirectory.

Now, Page Heading is going to change, and I am going to highlight that and I am going to call this Tour Name. And for body copy goes here, I am going to type in 'Tour description goes here.' So even though the structure is the same, I like putting placeholder information there that is very specific towards that. And there is one more template property we need to change. Go up to Modify > Template Properties again. You can bring that back up anytime you want. I am going to go down to my toursSubNav and show that. And then, I am go to my toursLink and I am going to change baseLink again to current to indicate that we are in that section.

Again verify that you are not modifying tours and that the space between the two of them is left. Let me go ahead and click OK, and that's a good place to start. Okay, so everything is looking pretty good so far. And now, I am just going to go ahead and save this as a template. So I am going to go to File and instead of just saving this as a normal page, I'm going to Save as Template, and that is how we create nested templates. This is going to be a template that is based off of the main_template. Now again, we get our message about our Region ID. That's okay. And once again we get our Save as Template dialog box.

Now, as far as the name of the template, I am going to call it tour_detail and then for Description, I am going to type in Tour detail with repeating region and we are going to talk about repeating regions in just a little bit. So I am going to go ahead and hit Save. And now, you can see that we are working on a brand new template. Now, I am going to switch over to the tour_detail_backpack_reference because it has some structure that we need. If I scroll down below the sort of standard content, I can see that we have tour descriptions for the packages available for the backpack tour.

This is a repeating structure. These tour descriptions all look the same. Just their information changes. So I am going to scroll back up, click inside the first one of these, and take a closer look at the structure. Each one of these is found inside of a div with the class tourDescription. Those are all encased in a div with the id tourDescriptions plural. That is the element I want to select. So using the Tag Selector, click on the div#tourDescriptions. With that selected, go up to Edit and choose Copy.

Now, let's go back to our tour_detail.dwt. Now, we want that structure on the page, but we don't want it right beside the main content region. So what I would like you to do is click inside the Tour Description and then use the Tag Selector to select the div#mainArticle. So that is the div that surrounds all of your tour name and the body copy for the tour. The tour descriptions themselves, that repeating region, needs to go underneath that. So what I am going to do now is with that div tag selected, I am going to hit my right arrow key.

In the code that's going to place me outside of the mainArticle div tag and that's really important. We do not want paste this inside the mainArticle div tag. We want it to be a separate structure. So again, just to do that one more time, click anywhere inside the mainArticle, use the Tag Selector to select it and then hit the right arrow key. Again, this is going to place you just outside of that mainArticle div. Now, I can go to Edit, choose Paste. Now that repeating structure is on the page. Now, in this case, we really only need one of these.

So I am going to select each one of them by clicking inside of it and then clicking on the div.tourDescription, singular, and deleting it. So I am just going to click inside every single one of these guys, except for one, and delete every single one of them. So again div.tourDescription, not tourDescriptions plural, the singulars, and get rid of those. Occasionally, Dreamweaver might be going to space out on you for just a minute there, like it did with me. So just be patient and that structure should come back. Okay, again, just to verify, click inside the Big Sur Retreat, which would be last one left, and it should be inside of a div with the class of tourDescription, which should in turn be inside of a div with an ID of tourDescriptions.

So okay, we are in good shape there. Once again, go up and save the file. So our nested template is now almost ready to go. One thing that we can do to our Tour Detail template that's going to make it a little bit easier to use is add a repeating region to it. The tour package description structure that we see here includes an image, the name of the tour, the tour description and some other elements. That structure simply repeats over and over for each tour. Repeating regions help deal with commonly repeating elements, like this, by allowing you to create as many repeating items as you need when you make a new page.

Before we built any pages using our new tour detail template, we will first add a repeating region to our template and we'll do that in the next movie.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training.

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Q: After creating a website following the instructions in the course, the header background graphic appears correctly in all browsers except Internet Explorer 6 and Internet Explorer 7.  The graphic works properly in IE 8. What can be done to make the graphics appear in IE 6 and IE 7?
A: To make the header background graphic appear, wrap the header div tag in another div tag and give it an ID like “mainHeader.” The problem stems from a bug in Internet Explorer that prevents the browser from dealing with absolutely positioned elements that are right next to relatively positioned elements.  Following the steps above should solve the problem.
Q: In the tutorial, the author links the Tool Tip to the word "More" at the bottom of the thumbnail photo field. I can't figure out how to place the <a> "More" on the thumbnail photo field.
A: In the example, there is a paragraph that wraps an <img> tag and the word "More," which is surrounded by an anchor tag (<a>). The author uses CSS to make sure the parent div tag of the thumbs floats to the left, and is only wide enough for the image. This causes the link text to break down onto another line. Then, the instructor uses CSS to align the link text to the right of the <img>. The link itself is a void JavaScript function, ( javascript();). This gives you a "dummy" link without returning you to the top of the page as the "#" dummy link tends to do.
If you were manually typing the text in, you could select the image, hit the right arrow button, and begin typing. The text should then appear on screen.
Q: In this movie, you are making changes to the HTML in order to customize the text layout on your page (i.e. h1, h2, and h3 tags as well as strong and em tags). I'm wondering why you are not using CSS to do this (i.e. font-size, font-weight). Do you typically use one method, or is it customary to do use both in a layout, and if so, what guidelines would you suggest to determine which to use when?
A: We modify the page's structure through the use of h1, h2, and other heading tags. So when we are choosing heading levels, we're not concerning ourselves with typography; we're establishing page structure. A heading is chosen to denote the level of importance for the heading, not typography.
CSS should always be used for presentation, not HTML.
Q: In the “Understanding ID selectors” movie, the author states that only one ID tag can be used per page, but then he adds two ID tags. Can you please clarify this for me?
A: You can use as many IDs per page as you wish. They just must all use a unique name. Therefore if you assign an element the ID of "header" no other element on THAT page may use the same ID.
Q: I noticed that in this course, the instructor uses this code on his CSS external sheet: @charset "UTF-8"; I was under the impression that this code wasn't necessary. The site is unclear on the matter. Is it necessary? Is it a best practice? Is it an older form of CSS?
A: The characterset attribute is added automatically by Dreamweaver, and there’s no practical reason to remove it. While it's not needed (the HTML page should indicate which encoding to use for the page) it is helpful if the CSS file is ever imported or used on a page where the characterset isn't specified. Think of it as a safety net for characterset encoding. Not necessary, but not harmful either.
Q: I need to add captions below images that I insert in pages of text. I played all the lessons in Chapter 5 (Adding Text and Structure) but none dealt with captions. I hope the author has an answer or can refer me to a source.
A: In HTML 4 and XHTML 1 (which is what Dreamweaver CS5 uses by default), there wasn't really a way to add captions below your photos. Most web authors would "fake" captions by having paragraphs of text below their images and using CSS to position and style the captions in the desired manner. Many would use a class such as .imgCaption to control the styling. To do this you would essentially position the text underneath the image through CSS (often by grouping the image and the paragraph in a div tag) and italicizing the text.

However in HTML5, there are new elements that allow us to associate images and their captions, the figure and figcaption element. Our author James Williamson just finished a course on HTML5: Syntax, Structure, and Semantics which details how to use it.

HTML5 Doctor also has a nice article on the figure and figcaption elements at
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