[Express] iWeb versus Freeway

Anyone tell me the pros and cons between Apple iWeb and Freeway Express. Want a simple answer for a simple page designer who can just about get by with Photoshop CS2 and In Design?


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Hi David,
iWeb is very much more template based. You generally pick the template
you are after, change the images and the text and you are done.
Freeway Express allows you to not only start with pre-built templates
but also allows you to start your web design from scratch meaning you
can create the web design you want and that is unique to you.
As a visual designer you shouldn’t have any real problems
understanding how Express will allow you to lay out a page (or site)
for you and only create the HTML when the site is published. Both
Express and Pro ‘feel like’ traditional DTP applications for the web.
Regards,
Tim.

On 27 Oct 2009, at 21:50, DAVID JUDD wrote:

Anyone tell me the pros and cons between Apple iWeb and Freeway
Express. Want a simple answer for a simple page designer who can
just about get by with Photoshop CS2 and In Design?

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Hi Tim,
Many thanks for your reply that helps a good deal and to some extent
confirms what I was thinking. I don’t want to be locked into a template.

Best regards David

2009/10/27 Tim Plumb email@hidden

Hi David,
iWeb is very much more template based. You generally pick the template you
are after, change the images and the text and you are done. Freeway Express
allows you to not only start with pre-built templates but also allows you to
start your web design from scratch meaning you can create the web design you
want and that is unique to you.
As a visual designer you shouldn’t have any real problems understanding how
Express will allow you to lay out a page (or site) for you and only create
the HTML when the site is published. Both Express and Pro ‘feel like’
traditional DTP applications for the web.
Regards,
Tim.

On 27 Oct 2009, at 21:50, DAVID JUDD wrote:

Anyone tell me the pros and cons between Apple iWeb and Freeway Express.

Want a simple answer for a simple page designer who can just about get by
with Photoshop CS2 and In Design?

FreewayActions.com - Freeware and shareware actions for Freeway Express &
Pro.


Protect your mailto links from being harvested by spambots with Anti Spam.
Only available at FreewayActions.com


http://www.freewayactions.com


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Hi David!

This is a topic near and dear to my heart as I have been going back and forth between the two programs in recent months. When I first started, I used FreeWay Express and I have to admit there was a bit of a learning curve. I downloaded the manual as a .pdf and had it printed and read it cover to cover. This is a bit difficult as there are PRO pages that do not apply.

The best I could do for my own website was one (LONG) page which can be seen here figleef.com.

Then my Powerbook HD crashed and my new iMac had iWeb. My 11 year old niece built an iWeb site in about 4 hours.

iWeb is MUCH easier but has a lot of drawbacks which I will explain.

HOWEVER, because the tools and layout of both programs are related and rather similar, I would suggest just playing around with iWeb to get yourself familiar with the terminology. Just start a dummy site.

Yes, it is template BASED but you don’t have to use the templates. I have used the black BLANK page for this website in iWeb: TriggerRocks.com Used blank pages for most of it and then used iWebs photo layout pages for the pix because it’s just SO easy.

There are white and black BLANK pages which you can play with to your heart’s content. It’s a bit like pagemaker. Drag and drop. Make one page, heading, etc. the way you like and the duplicate the page, etc. On the blank pages the ‘menu bar’ is there for you and that’s the BEST part about iWeb. With Freeway Express you sort of have to hand build it.

The advantage of iWeb is the time. I am working on another website with iWeb starzstuff.com. I was able to get this up and going in about 4 hours. It’s a template but I deleted most of the froofroo and only kept the top header part. I am tweaking it to launch on Halloween. If you want to put up a website for a lost dog or to sell a house or for your family’s trip to Aruba, you really can’t beat iWeb for ease of use.

BUT it does have some quirks and that’s mostly to do with searchable html and page names. If you need to be found by search engines, you need html and iWeb will treat MOST text as a graphic. Freeway has the option to make a GRAPHIC box (into which you can use some odd font and it will become a graphic visible on all compters even ones that don’t have that font, but it will NOT be searchable html) or a TEXT box. You should, even these days, stick to basic fonts for the ‘body’ of your website (Arial, Courier New, Georgia, Times New Roman, Verdana, Trebuchet MS, Helvetica). I am finding that with iWeb you need to have a ‘keyword’ rich paragraph on your first page for the search engines. Or get a 3rd party program like the iWeb SEO Tool by Rage Software (which I am contemplating BUT I really want to spend more time doing art than finding my inner geek).

At any rate, I am going to go back to Freeway Express for major websites because it’s got more tricks up it’s sleeve. And so far, I don’t miss PRO. I am more a designer than a techie. BUT seriously, play around with iWeb first because it’s easy and you won’t feel overwhelmed like I first did with Freeway Express. I know going back to FW, it’s going to be SO much simpler now that I’ve ‘mastered’ iWeb.

And feel free to post quesitons here on the board. These folks are GREAT. Very smart and very helpful. And even though it’s not an iWeb SITE, I can help you along with that just as a primer. You’ll appreciate FW a lot more if you first understand the limitations of iWeb.

iWeb is like McDonalds. It’s fast but not very nutritious. FW takes longer but it more satisfying and a much ‘healthier’ website.

Cheers!

Lee
figleef.com


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PS. I just did this website. http://grindelwaldhostel.com Took less than an hour. iWeb, stripped everything away. As I said, for getting something up QUICK, iWeb works. MAYBE I’ll get this fast on FreeWay Express if I eat my Cheerios and lock myself away for the winter!


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Assuming you don’t have to type the text and you can copy and paste, this page would have taken less than 5 minutes in Freeway.

Take a little time to learn how the tools work. The time is very well invested.

On 28 Oct 2009, 2:18 am, Lee wrote:

PS. I just did this website. http://grindelwaldhostel.com Took less than an hour. iWeb


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Hi Lee

Brilliant! Just the sort of assessment I’m looking for, thanks for taking
the trouble to explain the comparison between iWeb and Freeway. I quite
understand the struggle in learning these programmes because I’m getting on
a bit! Now retired I’ve some experience in Quark and now use Adobe In Design
and Photoshop CS2 but my efforts to import a sliced page int my old
Dreamweaver MX have been very frustrating as once you start trying to edit
with tables the layout gets blown appart, and I have’nt really the tecnical
patience to get into

tags etc.

I have a copy of iLife to load on my MacBook Pro so I then will have iWeb
and it does look so easy and has all those links to Google Maps and to
e-mail forms etc. Good to hear that you have been able to use as a basis and
re-design as you want it. Not so good that search engines can’t pick up the
HTML. I want to make a web site for my Daughters Restaurant in Northampton
at Rennie Mackintosh Museum so want to put that on search engines etc. I
shall try my best do digest the 100 pages of Freeway Express Instructions
and will also have a go with iWeb. My Freeway is a Trial Version at the
moment but will probably buy from Amazon for £48 not bad, in the meantime
many thanks, have had a look at your web pages and they all look very
professiuonal

Best regards

david

2009/10/28 Lee email@hidden

Hi David!

This is a topic near and dear to my heart as I have been going back and
forth between the two programs in recent months. When I first started, I
used FreeWay Express and I have to admit there was a bit of a learning
curve. I downloaded the manual as a .pdf and had it printed and read it
cover to cover. This is a bit difficult as there are PRO pages that do not
apply.

The best I could do for my own website was one (LONG) page which can be
seen here figleef.com.

Then my Powerbook HD crashed and my new iMac had iWeb. My 11 year old niece
built an iWeb site in about 4 hours.

iWeb is MUCH easier but has a lot of drawbacks which I will explain.

HOWEVER, because the tools and layout of both programs are related and
rather similar, I would suggest just playing around with iWeb to get
yourself familiar with the terminology. Just start a dummy site.

Yes, it is template BASED but you don’t have to use the templates. I have
used the black BLANK page for this website in iWeb: TriggerRocks.com Used
blank pages for most of it and then used iWebs photo layout pages for the
pix because it’s just SO easy.

There are white and black BLANK pages which you can play with to your
heart’s content. It’s a bit like pagemaker. Drag and drop. Make one page,
heading, etc. the way you like and the duplicate the page, etc. On the blank
pages the ‘menu bar’ is there for you and that’s the BEST part about iWeb.
With Freeway Express you sort of have to hand build it.

The advantage of iWeb is the time. I am working on another website with
iWeb starzstuff.com. I was able to get this up and going in about 4 hours.
It’s a template but I deleted most of the froofroo and only kept the top
header part. I am tweaking it to launch on Halloween. If you want to put up
a website for a lost dog or to sell a house or for your family’s trip to
Aruba, you really can’t beat iWeb for ease of use.

BUT it does have some quirks and that’s mostly to do with searchable html
and page names. If you need to be found by search engines, you need html and
iWeb will treat MOST text as a graphic. Freeway has the option to make a
GRAPHIC box (into which you can use some odd font and it will become a
graphic visible on all compters even ones that don’t have that font, but it
will NOT be searchable html) or a TEXT box. You should, even these days,
stick to basic fonts for the ‘body’ of your website (Arial, Courier New,
Georgia, Times New Roman, Verdana, Trebuchet MS, Helvetica). I am finding
that with iWeb you need to have a ‘keyword’ rich paragraph on your first
page for the search engines. Or get a 3rd party program like the iWeb SEO
Tool by Rage Software (which I am contemplating BUT I really want to spend
more time doing art than finding my inner geek).

At any rate, I am going to go back to Freeway Express for major websites
because it’s got more tricks up it’s sleeve. And so far, I don’t miss PRO.
I am more a designer than a techie. BUT seriously, play around with iWeb
first because it’s easy and you won’t feel overwhelmed like I first did with
Freeway Express. I know going back to FW, it’s going to be SO much simpler
now that I’ve ‘mastered’ iWeb.

And feel free to post quesitons here on the board. These folks are GREAT.
Very smart and very helpful. And even though it’s not an iWeb SITE, I can
help you along with that just as a primer. You’ll appreciate FW a lot more
if you first understand the limitations of iWeb.

iWeb is like McDonalds. It’s fast but not very nutritious. FW takes longer
but it more satisfying and a much ‘healthier’ website.

Cheers!

Lee
figleef.com


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Like it or (hopefully not) loathe it, if you’ve an opinion about
Freeway Express, Pro, the manuals, web site or whatever then please
let Softpress know your views.
A few minutes providing the company with your feedback will make
things better in the long run and could win you an iPod;
http://www.softpress.com/offers/feedback/
Thanks,
Tim.

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Adding to the comments so far, speed is not the only advantage. As has
already been pointed out, with Freeway you get brownie points for the
greater use of valid HTML code in some instances. However, the
greatest advantage is flexibility of design and the ability to grow
your skills to incorporate some of the more sophisticated “tricks of
the trade”.

The learning curve is not that steep and, especially if you use a grid
to help align everything, you can be producing very presentable web
sites in the first couple of attempts. What is important to remember,
is to sketch out where you are going first, rather than jump straight
into Freeway. That means all the pages you will need and the
navigation menu you will require. You’ve used InDesign, David, so you
know the principles. You keep much the same mind-set with FW.

For further reassurance, I started with FW when it was less easy to
use than it is now - and I’m a copywriter with no design training (and
some may say that shows!) but plenty of experience of initiating good
design, as an Agency principal, before I chose to go freelance. I,
too, use Photoshop and InDesign, plus Illustrator and Acrobat (all
CS3) which together with Freeway Pro give me all I have needed for
producing a relatively small number of sites (compared to true web
designers) over a diverse range - including e-commerce and CMS
flavours. And, as they say, if I can do that, it shouldn’t be
difficult for others to do even better.

In the past I tried Dreamweaver, Go-Live and a number of PC
applications and none of them came close to the ease of working with
Freeway, even though some offered more options for the truly web (and
code) savvy.

Finally, iWEb might be clean and easy, but where do you go when you
want to extend your skills. Do you want to race your horse around the
same track, with blinkers on, or explore the wild countryside? With FW
Express you can mature to FW Pro and, once you have the basics sorted,
you will want to do just that. Maybe, after just two or three websites
in the former. Personally, if you are competent with InDesign, and you
can spare the cash (which is very reasonable for what you get) I’d
even consider going straight for Pro and get the extra flexibility of
layered containers and CSS, native import of your PSD files, a greater
range of time saving Actions and much more.

At the end of the day, what you choose is only a tool for your skills.
Don’t sell yourself short. Decide whether you need something for just
occasional use or something more professional.

Oh! And always remember you are designing on a Mac, so check
everything on a PC before you finish: the various iterations of
Internet Explorer and other PC browsers do pay a few unwanted ricks at
times!

Colin

On 28 Oct 2009, at 09:12, WebWorker wrote:

Assuming you don’t have to type the text and you can copy and paste,
this page would have taken less than 5 minutes in Freeway.

Take a little time to learn how the tools work. The time is very
well invested.

On 28 Oct 2009, 2:18 am, Lee wrote:

PS. I just did this website. http://grindelwaldhostel.com Took less
than an hour. iWeb


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Hi Colin,

Many thanks for your very concise explanation on iWeb versus Freeway. You
sound like you have a good professional background to advertising design and
copy writing principles, and have laid out the benefits of Freeway. As I am
still on a Trial with Freeway Express, I value your comments about going
straight to Freeway Express Pro. From the manual there is not too much
difference in the basics and as you say if I need to use style sheets etc
they will be available. Your point about testing on a PC is worth
remembering too.

Many thanks for taking the time to write,

Best wishes David

2009/10/28 Colin Alcock email@hidden

Adding to the comments so far, speed is not the only advantage. As has
already been pointed out, with Freeway you get brownie points for the
greater use of valid HTML code in some instances. However, the greatest
advantage is flexibility of design and the ability to grow your skills to
incorporate some of the more sophisticated “tricks of the trade”.

The learning curve is not that steep and, especially if you use a grid to
help align everything, you can be producing very presentable web sites in
the first couple of attempts. What is important to remember, is to sketch
out where you are going first, rather than jump straight into Freeway. That
means all the pages you will need and the navigation menu you will require.
You’ve used InDesign, David, so you know the principles. You keep much the
same mind-set with FW.

For further reassurance, I started with FW when it was less easy to use
than it is now - and I’m a copywriter with no design training (and some may
say that shows!) but plenty of experience of initiating good design, as an
Agency principal, before I chose to go freelance. I, too, use Photoshop and
InDesign, plus Illustrator and Acrobat (all CS3) which together with Freeway
Pro give me all I have needed for producing a relatively small number of
sites (compared to true web designers) over a diverse range - including
e-commerce and CMS flavours. And, as they say, if I can do that, it
shouldn’t be difficult for others to do even better.

In the past I tried Dreamweaver, Go-Live and a number of PC applications
and none of them came close to the ease of working with Freeway, even though
some offered more options for the truly web (and code) savvy.

Finally, iWEb might be clean and easy, but where do you go when you want to
extend your skills. Do you want to race your horse around the same track,
with blinkers on, or explore the wild countryside? With FW Express you can
mature to FW Pro and, once you have the basics sorted, you will want to do
just that. Maybe, after just two or three websites in the former.
Personally, if you are competent with InDesign, and you can spare the cash
(which is very reasonable for what you get) I’d even consider going straight
for Pro and get the extra flexibility of layered containers and CSS, native
import of your PSD files, a greater range of time saving Actions and much
more.

At the end of the day, what you choose is only a tool for your skills.
Don’t sell yourself short. Decide whether you need something for just
occasional use or something more professional.

Oh! And always remember you are designing on a Mac, so check everything on
a PC before you finish: the various iterations of Internet Explorer and
other PC browsers do pay a few unwanted ricks at times!

Colin

On 28 Oct 2009, at 09:12, WebWorker wrote:

Assuming you don’t have to type the text and you can copy and paste, this

page would have taken less than 5 minutes in Freeway.

Take a little time to learn how the tools work. The time is very well
invested.

On 28 Oct 2009, 2:18 am, Lee wrote:

PS. I just did this website. http://grindelwaldhostel.com Took less than
an hour. iWeb


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Like all new applications, hands on play teaches you the most. Your FW
Express will give you a good feel for the FW way of working and, as
long as you understand it’s limitations and work within them, you be
able to get very good results. I only suggest Pro because you sound as
if you have the skills that would benefit from the extra capability
and if you want to take web design seriously - i.e. for earning good
corn - and be able to meet the briefs from more clients, then Pro is
certainly the way to go.

Enjoy the ride: you’ll find some things don’t gel first time, so use
this forum to get the answers. You’ll get a real buzz when it all
comes good.

Colin

On 28 Oct 2009, at 10:55, D Judd wrote:

… As I am still on a Trial with Freeway Express, I value your
comments about going
straight to Freeway Express Pro…


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I actually was looking for a web app to replace GoLive (Dreamweaver seemed like a big headache for me, anyway). I bought Rapidweaver. Then I saw Freeway and bought that. Never used Rapidweaver (which I think is comparable to iWeb).

I use FreewayPro. It had enough features over the Express version to make it the clear choice. I come from a print background (Adobe slave! And Quark, too) so this was pretty easy to pick up. Just goes together basically like a page layout program with some “webcentricities” of course!

Bob


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I have to admit that I am not really interested in becoming a web building master. I’m an artist. And I am thrilled to be able to have ANYTHING show up on the web after I’ve uploaded it to the server. I am a huge fan of a book called Don’t Make Me Think by Steve Krug and will never (never say never?) get into frames and understanding CSS. My websites are probably going to look very similar whether I use Freeway Express or iWeb because for ME the best part of Freeway Express is behind the scenes.

David, you sound far more advanced than I am in terms of programs and perhaps will pick up on the Freeway programs much faster than I did. I didn’t ‘get’ the difference between the page color and the browser color when I started, or have any clue how big a pixel sized page really was.

Colin is right in that the biggest and most important task is gathering all the info - the photos, the copy, any logos, and maybe think about color choices. That’s true of either iWeb or FW. A word of warning about iWeb, some of the bells and whistles are only available if you have a Mobile Me account and use that to host your site. One of those is the hit counter, but you can get a 3rd party one and include it in an html snippet.

Does your daughter’s restaurant (I LOVE Rennie Mackintosh) already have a website? You could use iWeb to just put up a page, some photos, directions, a good paragraph, phone number . . etc. Just to get that BUZZ from getting something out there. THEN do your homework on Freeway and a couple of weeks later put up your masterpiece!

For me, FreewayExpress is enough. I simply have other things I want to with the time I have left on the planet. For me the beauty of Freeway Express (or iWeb) for that matter is that I can do the websites that I do. As I said in my opening paragraph, I have no desire to become a pro at it. A good deal of life is knowing your limitations and knowing when to stop. “Good enough” is good enough.

Again, I urge you to post any questions on this board if you have them, even if they seem silly. I did and no one laughed. Well, they SNICKERED behind my back but they’re across the pond so I couldn’t hear them!

Best,
Lee


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Well put, Lee. Knowing what you want to do and how much you want to
get you hands dirty is most important.

Although I thought much the same when I first dipped in, for me web
design became quite infectious, as new clients asked for more than
Express will ever do. Then I’ve no real artistic talent to earn from -
I’m more of an assembly worker with a reasonable design sense and just
about capable of producing simpler graphics and an eye for images.
Express and the early (pre CSS) FWs certainly did all I wanted at the
start - which was produce better sites than many of the so called
professional, template driven offerings at the time. Certainly they
complemented my core copywriting skills, because at least the content
was relevant and concise within an effective visual format, for which
you don’t necessarily need all the capabilities of FW Pro. Mind you I
use most of them now - but that doesn’t mean iWeb and Rapidweaver
(which I have tried) don’t have a useful place for those who just want
to “show there wares”.

Colin

On 28 Oct 2009, at 13:46, Lee wrote:

I have to admit that I am not really interested in becoming a web
building master. I’m an artist. And I am thrilled to be able to have
ANYTHING show up on the web after I’ve uploaded it to the server…


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OOPS!
Typical copywriter error!! - “show their wares” might be better.

Colin
On 28 Oct 2009, at 14:25, Colin Alcock wrote:

… you don’t necessarily need all the capabilities of FW Pro. Mind
you I use most of them now - but that doesn’t mean iWeb and
Rapidweaver (which I have tried) don’t have a useful place for those
who just want to “show there wares”.

Colin

On 28 Oct 2009, at 13:46, Lee wrote:

I have to admit that I am not really interested in becoming a web
building master. I’m an artist. And I am thrilled to be able to
have ANYTHING show up on the web after I’ve uploaded it to the
server…


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On 28 Oct 2009, at 14:25, Colin Alcock wrote:

show there wares

Ahem … Colin, your core copywriting skills are showing :wink:

best wishes,

Paul Bradforth

http://www.paulbradforth.com


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Colin, your core copywriting skills are showing :wink:

Wheres?

k


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Thanks Paul - at least it’s good to know someone reads what I write!

Colin

On 28 Oct 2009, at 15:05, Paul Bradforth wrote:

On 28 Oct 2009, at 14:25, Colin Alcock wrote:

show there wares

Ahem … Colin, your core copywriting skills are showing :wink:

best wishes,

Paul Bradforth

http://www.paulbradforth.com


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I’ll try that next time!

Colin

On 28 Oct 2009, at 15:59, Keith Martin wrote:

Colin, your core copywriting skills are showing :wink:

Wheres?

k


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On 28 Oct 2009, at 15:59, Keith Martin wrote:

Colin, your core copywriting skills are showing :wink:

Wheres?

Apologies to Colin; I fired off my pathetic little witticism only to
find that the next message I read was Colin correcting himself! Boy
was my face #FF0000

best wishes,

Paul Bradforth

http://www.paulbradforth.com


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