Recently I've been exploring some more designer friendly options in this space for upcoming projects and decided to give Dreamweaver another look after not using it in many years. I have to say, I'm extreamly underwelmed. It's like Adobe sucked all the joy out of the product. Is it functional? Sure. Can you build a site with it? I guess but Adobe is making me not want to with this product. The interface has never been all that great but now it is even more cludgy and confusing, while feeling bloated and slow. I really don't know who this app is targeting, designers or developers? Regardless, they are most certainly missing the boat on both accounts. I would hope that someone over there is looking at tools like Webflow or Blocs, both of which are doing some intresting things in regards to layout. Heck, even some of the wordpress editors like Elementor and CSS Hero are worth a gander. These tools are not only functional but at least, for me, they bring back that since of wonder joy that seems to be missing and leaves me to ponder the question, is Dreamweaver still relevant in 2021?
Is DW still relevant?
In what way?
As a code editor? Sure, though I think it was better before Brackets was added to it.
As a site management tool? Yes. I still haven't found anything that works better for managing local files.
As a visual design tool? No, not really.
That's my point, it doesn't really excell at any one thing. I will conceede site management to you, however I can't recall the last time I did a local push.
In my opinion, no. Adobe cannot or refuses to compete in this area any longer, probably for good financial reasons. Once the market becomes saturated the slice of the financial pie reduces and becomes rather unnattractive to large coporations.
Adobe appear to only be interested in sectors where there is little to no competition like dtp, image manipulation, video editing where they undoubtedly offer the best solutions.
If you look, particularly at the first 2, dtp and image manipulation, name the competition, very few apart from infinity. Now name the competition where web production is concerned and theres no stopping the deluge. Wix has recently launched their answer to Webflow, Editor X.
The problem with most of these solutions, whilst being by far and away superior in what options they offer they tie you in to a workflow as the tools are web based and some are non transportable in terms of hosting as they rely on branded content management systems.
Dreamweaver is still a reasonable simple code editor but not much else other than a premium price tag compared to its competitors which are either free or come at a much lower cost, for instance Pinegrow.
Lets be honest here DW is probably viewed now as a freeby to anyone that has a full cloud subscription. I cant see who would pay for it as a single product item when there are better options available and you get more bang for your buck, that is just my opinion based on watching what is going on in the webdev world.
I think Dreamweaver is not the flagship it used to be. It is true that its features have been reduced and have not been able to adapt as all the alternative solutions out there have done.
However, in terms of project management, coupled with Bridge, Dreamweaver remains in my opinion a tool without comparison, nor alternative. Well, having said that, it is imperative to code outside, and to set up your own preview flow.
Code Editor : Like John I prefer the old pre CC 2017 editor, it was much more stable and better IMO. If they brought the old cold editor back with some updates I'd be very happy.
Live View: Has been problematic with performance issues and glitches.... Don't really use so can't comment on the most recent versions and how much it has improved.
Server Side Tools: Adobe removed them and forced people to pay for third party tools.
Site Management: As a Site Management tool it's good, the introduction of GIT a few years ago was a welcome addition.
...looking at tools like Webflow or Blocs, even some of the wordpress editors like Elementor and CSS Hero...
That's fine if all you want is drag & drop "ease of use" and a lifelong commitment to their proprietary code, templates, widgets and in some cases web hosting. I'm not interested in being a slave to a particular ecosystem when I don't have to.
The web is a lot more sophisticated today than it was a few years ago. And layout is just one small piece of a much larger picture. If you're looking for the "Holy Grail" of web authoring tools, good luck. I don't think there is a web authoring tool anywhere that can do everything and do it well for all skill levels. If there is one, I've yet to find it. That's why good developers use different tools for different tasks. Try everything and use whatever works best for you.
That's why good developers use different tools for different tasks. Try everything and use whatever works best for you.By @Nancy OShea
It is precisely there, and in my opinion, that Dreamwever has missed its positioning. If you look closely, Macromedia was the first publisher to really play the studio card, the suite card, by offering a range of complementary and interoperable tools. Transversality was a priority and communication between tools was at the forefront.
It is true that today the set of available tools are as varied as there are developers... between technologies, libraries, automation tools, etc... it would be difficult to satisfy everyone... but if we look closely, there is no tool with a visual interface that allows us to gather all the elements used to build our websites and applications, like Yeoman, Bower and other alternatives, but not from a command line, but from a rich interface.
How many of us still use from the Dreamweaver Asset's panel, the copy files to new web site ?
How many of us use EMMET couplet to a DWT to generate skeleton as a Boilerplate like ?
How many of us use NPM, BOWER, SASS, LIBS.... and Dreamweaver !!!
A closer look... many of us notice, and don't contradict, that Dreamweaver is still a real project management tool... it would just need to be beefed up a bit on that aspect... but not in the form of integration, like so far with jQueryMobile, Sass, LiveView, Bracket... and all other such errors, but in the form of networking...
and like many of you, I'm one of them, I have a lot of ideas to propose on this subject and try to make Dreamweaver comes back as a flagship creative cloud tool
'and like many of you, I'm one of them, I have a lot of ideas to propose on this subject and try to make Dreamweaver comes back as a flagship creative cloud tool'
By @B i r n o u
Dream on, its never going to happen, not as Dreamweaver anyway.
Paula spent years attempting to open the eyes of those responsible within Adobe for decision making in terms of the direction that Dreamweaver should be following, as have many of use that are still using Dreamweaver and those such as myself that did use Dreamweaver until it dropped the ball.
For whatever reason Adobe seemingly arent interested in what users think and require and they for some reason cant deliver anything on schedule or on time after teasing a road map. Whilst other smaller companies are promising and delivering, some on a weekly basis Adobe are trailing in their wake, still trying to make Dreamweaver compatible with a Spectrum ZX.
I think we are all frustrated at the lack of progress, the lack of communication, the unkempt promises. In reality Dreamweaver is being driven to its slow demise by internal company policy, which l assume is just that.
Without an explanation from Adobe and some positive signs in the way of new innovative inclusions into Dreamweaver to shut us all up then all we can do is scratch our heads and put forward suggestions as to why Dreamweaver has stagnated to the point where its very, very ordinary now, rather than a leading product expected from a large and respected company whose reputation has always been to take on the World and deliver the best.
I think you are missing the point or at the very least my intention. Yes, I agree that the web has changed drastically in the last few years. The reliance on more sophisticated frontend stacks like node and react has given us the ability to redifine user experience and user interaction in ways that were not easily attained in years past. I'm not advocating for any of the programs I mentioned above, they all have their share of drawbacks due to how they decided to position themselves in the market place and ecosystem lockin is a real concern. What I am saying is that there are tools out there that are doing some really intresting and cool stuff in their segment that are more designer focused. A target that Dreamweaver has been targeting since it's inception.
more designer focused. A target that Dreamweaver has been targeting since it's inception.
Its moved away from being 'designer focused' in recent years, to being more code focused. Why? No-one really has any idea other than maintaining a simple code focused tool is a lot simpler than maintaining a drop/drag low-code, no-code designer tool.
Its not beyond the scope of Adobe to employ a team of software experts to compete but there is no appetite for it given the financial return, split amongst so many companies competing in this market sector.
There is also a lot of great free editors like VS code, Sublime Text, which Adobe competed against with their own free editor, Brackets. Well Brackets didnt win the race so presumably for that reason Adobe recently killed it off. Brackets was a nice editor but once again Adobe failed to take it to the next level or it wasnt supported as well as the other free editors mentioned by extention developers. The sector is too hot to handle.
Exactly, that's why I posed the initail question. I'd rather spend money on an editor like Nova or the like and invest my time in a suedo-closed system toolset despite the drawbacks rather than use an argueably free tool like Dreamweaver that seems to have lost it's relevancy.
Ive not tried Nova yet as my OS is too old, waiting for the new iMacs to be distributed and then l will get onboard. Coda is still mostly my go to editor at the moment as its Mac native and unitrusive, just lets me get on coding without all the UI bloat......hoping Nova will be similar. Ive been following it since release and it looks like its getting frequent updates, which is promising. Infact l use several editors, Web Storm, Php Storm, VS Code, Sublime Text, Codelobster, Komodo Edit. All have their strengths and weaknesses.
I still think there is a gap in the market to be exploited though for those who are not so code orientated especially in terms of producing entry level database driven website which is really why Dreamweaver excelled because it had a unique selling feature.
Yeah, I loved Coda as far as text editors go and Nova feels simlar only faster and more current in regards to feature-sets.