When programmers learns to become designers, we will have peace on earth. Its pointless to invent a tool that has 1000s of controls and can manipulate the world. Chance is, the inventor wont remember what the tool does anyway. Keep it Bleeding simple.
Servers, mail services, the lot. Just need 1 button. Play and Do what its supposed to be… very well. With such rapid growth of development. It is astonishing to see how much detail is needed to get a single task completed. 98% of the time, people need a tool to do a simple task. So design the tool to be simple for that 98%. Have cool millions of other features in your tool? Great! hide it. Noone else wants to know, and until that 2% asks, keep it in the bag.
Softwares and applications nowadays, should be self-healing, self-environment aware, scalable and flexible. Servers have millions of uses..Yes.. but 98% need it just to serve webpages. 98% just need it to handle mail. Focusing to excel on these two points will cure 98% of the problem.
There are tons of web technologies and books and languages. But for a novice, where should i start? There is lots of answers for that question. The real question is, what is the purpose?
1) Do you want to just have a website? – answer: Build a blog / wordpress.com or msn live webspace will be enough for you.
2) I want to learn designing websites. – answer: I suggest you travel down the route of flash and actionscripting. (this part makes you a web interface designer.) Flash has lots of abilities now that cover lots of what other websites can do. Almost all browsers support flash and it will make your life simplier just by sticking to one technology.
3) I want to learning web programming. – answer: Pick a language of your choice. My suggestion is travel down the Php, Mysql route. You can explore into the frameworks which makes your life easier. But dont get too stuck in it.
4) I just want to program, from web to applications to everything. – answer: pick up jsp or python. these are both languages which you can program applications for macs/pcs and websites. The trend nowadays in cloud apps. where all the programes are run from your browser. like google mail, google docs (which is like ms word). The beauty of cloud apps is that it can be used by all.
Designing with CSS and using Px or Ems?
In CSS, normally theres a few ways for defining sizes. PT, Px and EM.
Heres an article discussing about the difference and when to use what. Please follow this interesting article on which is better: Article by Rubens
So what sizes for websites are appropriate? at current standards, 960 is the most common. so what about 760? 760 is popular but most sites adopt 960 for its layout. Why not fluid? this is because, its very difficult to control content layout if its fluid. if its a load of text, you might getaway with it.
the following is a good reference site for it.
Open Source Designs
Here are some good references for open source. You can use them for some ideas when designing your websites.
Hmm as a website designer, or even for a blogger, a website picture capture tool is always necessary. Easy, just visit the website of this screen capture, then enter the url. Volia, you get a range of different website screenshots instantly. Great tool isnt it?
For a computer programmer, desktop publisher, or designer. Actually, simplicity is the key. simplicity contributes to speed and in this world, speed is everything. Now now, speed means to locate the best tools (Free if possible). Then use them to your advantage.