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Working with starter pages

From: Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training

Video: Working with starter pages

There are going to be times when creating a new page from scratch is simply not your best option. If you are new to using CSS for Layout, or you are simply looking for a head start for the structure and layout of your new files, Dreamweaver starter pages offer over a dozen standards-compliant, cross-browser-compatible layouts to choose from. These layouts render consistently in Internet Explorer for Windows, versions 5 through 8, Firefox for Mac and Windows, versions 1 through 3, Opera, versions 8 and 9 for both Mac and Windows, and Safari 2 through 4, really, any browser out there. They're fantastic layouts and they're designed to be cross- browser compatible. All right.

Working with starter pages

There are going to be times when creating a new page from scratch is simply not your best option. If you are new to using CSS for Layout, or you are simply looking for a head start for the structure and layout of your new files, Dreamweaver starter pages offer over a dozen standards-compliant, cross-browser-compatible layouts to choose from. These layouts render consistently in Internet Explorer for Windows, versions 5 through 8, Firefox for Mac and Windows, versions 1 through 3, Opera, versions 8 and 9 for both Mac and Windows, and Safari 2 through 4, really, any browser out there. They're fantastic layouts and they're designed to be cross- browser compatible. All right.

So where do we find these? Well, to access our New Pages, just go to the New Document dialog box. When selecting a new Blank Page, the starter pages appear in the Layout panel, offering choices based off of 1, 2, and 3 column layouts. Now when you're creating a new Page using one of those starter pages, let's say that we use this 2 column fixed, left sidebar, header and footer. Now when you choose one of those, Dreamweaver allows you to create a new external style sheet, add the layout styles to an existing style sheet, or embed the styles in a new page.

Now we'll do that right down here in this lower right-hand corner. So notice that it's asking us, "Hey, what do you want to do with the CSS for this Layout?" We could Add them to the Head of the new document that we're creating, we can Create a brand-New File, or we can Link to an Existing File. So if you already have an external CSS file, you could go ahead and place these styles directly in that file as well, which is pretty cool. Now, for what we're doing here. We're just going to add it to the Head of our document. If you already have an existing CSS file that might control something else, say typography, you're free to go ahead and attach that to the page as well at this point, which is pretty cool.

Now which option you'll choose will depend on your larger CSS strategy. The CSS created this Layout Only well commented and easy to customize for your own uses. So I'm going to go ahead and Create the page. Now as you can see, placeholder information and neutral background colors clearly mark content areas and are simple enough to easily replace with your own content. In fact, most regions have instructions on how to either control the CSS or which content should go where. So they're really, really easy to use.

Now I'm going to switch over to Code view, because I want to take a closer look at the CSS itself. Now if you want to examine how the Layout works, just go into Code view and check out the CSS. I'm going to scroll down until I find it. There it is. Now the CSS is fully commented with clear, concise descriptions of how the page structure, class structure, and layout styles work. Additional comments point out properties and styles focused on creating Web standards compliant code. All this is great information for those learning how to control layouts with CSS.

Now starter pages aren't for everyone, however, if you've never used CSS for Layout before, and want to make sure you're using solid standards compliant cross- browser CSS, they are great place to start. If you already have a strategy for using CSS in place, and one of the starter pages fits your Layout requirements, it can save you a lot of time in the creation of your CSS, as you'll simply tweak the existing CSS to be more in line with your specific needs. Now keep in mind that the CSS and Page structure generated from starter pages is entirely customizable.

You can add to, take away, and tweak the code in whatever manner you want. Just make sure to approach using starter pages with a clear strategy, so that the overall implementation of them into your site is seamless. Now in our next movie, we're going to discuss strategies for customizing starter pages and adopting them as part of your overall workflow.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training
Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training

135 video lessons · 89030 viewers

James Williamson
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  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
      34s

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