Tools – web development

web-toolsThis is just going to be a list of some basic tools and things every web developer should be aware of at least and use if the need arises. Hopefully nothing too technical or difficult to understand. So without further ado, the two most needed tools:

Notepad – (preferably notepad++) handy text editor will do, you basically need something to write code in… I prefer notepad++ because it has sexy code colouring and shrinking, has an FTP plugin… if you do choose to use notepad++ I would also recommend a monospaced font for easy code reading, one was released recently by Adobe (source code pro)

Photoshop – Yes it is expensive! it is also the defacto-standard amongst website designers (sometimes fireworks, again a part of the adobe suite) there are free alternatives such as GIMP, but really it’s photoshop all the way.

Now that you hopefully have the two necessary tools it’s time for the finer details:

Browsersfirefox, chrome, IE, opera & safari
Basically you want to get as many browsers to test your website on as possible, these are the most prominent so I would recommend them. It’s a case of making sure your website renders and functions as expected across as many platforms as you can.

KnowledgePHP, MySQL, XHTML or HTML, CSS, JavaScript
I guess this is the most important part… you should know the languages and technologies that make websites work before you make them yourself. remember practice makes perfect, just experiment and play and learn how to make it do what you intend.

Books – There are hundreds of books on web design, books teaching you how to program, how to create intuitive user interfaces, and everything in between.. you might also like to look for art books, books with logo design and street art, anything that you feel could help you in this field.

Frameworks (PHP)cake, zend, yii, codeigniter
Each of these are great frameworks to use, with their own benefits and pitfalls. Using a framework isn’t necessary, however you may find it speed up your development cycle and make code more standard across the application. Most of these also have built in some security also making your job a little easier.

Frameworks (AJAX)jQuery, mootools, prototype, YUI, dojo
Much like the PHP frameworks, AJAX frameworks are there to make your JavaScript life easier, making manipulating the DOM as simple as possible. Allowing you to send data to and from various services client-side. jQuery being the most prevalent of all of the JavaScript frameworks.

Templates / ResetsHTML5 boilerplate, HTML5 reset, Eric Meyer’s CSS reset
These are CSS files, and folder structures ready for creating a website into, using best practices and various techniques to make your website more compliant, run quicker and easier to maintain.

I hope you have enjoyed this article. This is by no means a definitive list and has barely scratched the surface on web development, but I hope you have learnt something or discovered something you might not have previously known about. As always likes, comments & shares are much appreciated.

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