Sometimes to be efficient at building web sites you need to have a variety of tools at hand to help speed up the process. We will look at the quick and dirty methods of web building. This will be a crash course overview of various cheap and free web tools that help us get our work done more effectively than ever before. These tools may be the tools that you have never heard of before, but once you realize their potential you may never go without them again. It's all about being efficient for a high return with little investment. These tools can make a 200 hour task turn into a 1 hour task. The presentation will be divided into segments under 10 minutes for each tool. We will cover both Windows and Mac tools
Date: Wednesday, January 21st, 2004
Place: Hot Pepper Studios in Portland, Oregon
Address: 3377 SE Division, Portland, OR 97202
Parking: A small parking lot plus ample street parking on Division
Attendence: Anyone can attend the event, but please RSVP
Who: Nick Finck and Ross Olson
This presentation is available online at: nickfinck.com/presentations/devgroup/webtools
Ross also has some notes and links posted on his site as well. Be sure to visit the DevGroup NW web site for news about up and coming events.
Inetia Eyedropper 3.x (color picker)
Eyedropper is an extremely useful freeware program that allows you to pick the colour value from any pixel on the screen. You can download it and see a screenshot of the configuration screen on their web site.
Scooter Software Beyond Compare 2.x (WinDiff)
"Beyond Compare is a advanced file and folder comparison utility for Windows, which helps you visualize changes in your code, keeps your directories in sync, and validates copies of your data." You can download it and see screenshots on their web site.
WatchFire LinkBot Developer Edition (page crawler)
"Linkbot Developer Edition is a complete website testing solution that automatically scans web sites containing up to 100, 000 links for more than fifty potential problems. Linkbot analyzes the accessibility, functionality and usability of your website and generates graphical and text reports that detail errors that need to be fixed." You can download a trial version of it and read a review.
WindowsEyes (screen reader)
"Window-Eyes Professional is nothing less than the most stable screen reader available on the market today. Featuring Windows 9X, Me, 2000, XP, and 2003 compatibility, Window-Eyes puts you in the hands of the most powerful screen reading software ever created." Go ahead and download the demo or read more about it on their web site.
Absolute Log Analyzer (log analyzer)
"Absolute Log Analyzer is a client-based log processing solution designed for web traffic analysis. This easy for use and feature-rich tool can generate fast, effective reports of any kind and display them in a format that's easy to read and understand. There are three versions of Absolute Log Analyzer - Lite, Standard and Professional. These versions has compatible workspace and database format, but Lite version contains less statistics and has less flexibility while the Professional has all available log analysis options." See screenshots or download.
Favelets and Bookmarklets (Handy browser tools)
- Tantek's Favelets.com
- Andy Buddy Bookmarklets
- Pixy's Favelets
- Ian Lloyd's accessibility favelets and bookmarklets
- Simon Willison's bookmarklets
- W3C Favelets For The Validator
- Jesse Ruderman's bookmarklets
- Bookmarklets for Opera
- Sam-I-Am bookmarklets
DENIM (Rapid prototyping tool)
"DENIM is a system that helps web site designers in the early stages of design. DENIM supports sketching input, allows design at different refinement levels, and unifies the levels through zooming." You can download and see screenshots on their web site.
Visio & Omnigraffle templates & stencils
- Jesse James Garret's "A visual vocabulary"
- Peter Van Dijck's Templates
- Peter Van Dijck's visio shapes
- Michael Angeles's OmniGraffle Wireframe Palette
- Michael Angeles's Visio wireframe stencil
- Robert Silverman's Omnigraffle GUI Design Palette.
- Gabe Zentall's user interface library.
If you are trying to find more IA tools in general you might want to try:
Color Schemes (color tool)
"This application generates color schemes of several types. Every scheme is based on one (base) color, which is supplemented with additional colors making together the best optical imperssion - using one of the authentic algorithms." Start using the color tool right now. Be sure to note the help link in the corner.
Dirty SSI Tricks
"SSI (Server Side Includes) are directives that are placed in HTML pages, and evaluated on the server while the pages are being served. They let you add dynamically generated content to an existing HTML page, without having to serve the entire page via a CGI program, or other dynamic technology." You can learn more about SSI on these web sites:
- Apache Tutorial: Introduction to Server Side Includes
- NCSA HTTPd's docs on Server Side Includes (SSI)
- Mark West's Server Side Includes tutorial
- Advanced SSI Techniques
- Plus more resources at websitetips
"Do you work with people all over the world? Always forgetting whether it's time for them to be awake or not? Then it's About Time." Download it from iamcal.com
"You like to use notepad to edit files, but can't because it doesn't handle UNIX or Mac formatted files? You find that the search and replace facilities are just not powerful enough? You want to be able to see what line of a file you're on? You want features to be more accessable. Don't want to use a heavier editor because you need something very fast? This is exactly why noted was created. A small, fast file editor with the features you need, and no more." You can download from iamcal.com
FeedRoll (Add RSS feed content)
Feedroll is simply a easy way to add freshly rolled news from feeds to your web site. visit the Feedroll site to find out how to use it.