Paperback: 1000 pages
Publisher: Apress; 1st ed. edition (November 25, 2008)
Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1.9 x 9.2 inches
Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #879,394 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #18 in Books > Computers & Technology > Programming > Languages & Tools > Ajax #47 in Books > Computers & Technology > Digital Audio, Video & Photography > Adobe > Adobe Dreamweaver #109 in Books > Computers & Technology > Programming > Languages & Tools > CSS
I purchased three books to help me learn Dreamweaver:Dreamsweaver CS4 for DummiesDreamweaver CS4: The Missing ManualThe Essential Guide to Dreamweaver CS4 with CSS, Ajax and PHP (this book)I started with Dreamweaver CS4 for Dummies, which I found to be a pretty good book. I was able to read it cover to cover (though it's not necessary to do so to get started). In addition to a good basic overview, it had a couple of very helpful tips in a chapter called "10 Resources You Might Need."As my design became more detailed, I felt the need for a book that went into more depth and bought the other two books listed above. I like both books, but find I rely on The Missing Manual the most. Its writing is clear and easy to follow. The numerous tutorials give step-by-step instructions for a beginner on how to accomplish various tasks, with more advanced details included in the text.I like The Essential Guide as well, but since I'm not using PHP, I find that there are areas where the advice they give simply doesn't work for me. For example, when I wanted to learn more about using templates, The Essential Guide gave only a very basic explanation, then went into far more detail about using PHP "includes" instead. While I agree that the PHP "includes" are probably the better choice, it's not one that is available to me since I don't have a PHP testing server (and don't want to go through the complexity of setting one up on my home computer). If you are using PHP, then this is definitely the book to get.All in all, if I had to recommend one book to get started, it would be For Dummies, particularly if your needs are very simple and/or you're completely new to web site design.
I bought the Dreamweaver CS3 version of this book and loved it. However, when Dreamweaver CS4 came out, I decided to get the updated book. While this book is completely revised and updated for Dreamweaver CS4, there is still some common content between the two books, and hence my 4-star rating.Right off the bat, this book starts off with an introduction of the *new* features of Dreamweaver CS4, giving me a 'jumpstart' in using Dreamweaver CS4 and getting comfortable with it. The CS4 version dropped mainly three chapters from the CS3 book; Building Dynamic Websites with PHP & Ajax, Getting the Work Environment Ready, and Setting up MySQL and phpMyAdmin. The 'dropped' content wasn't as so much as cut out of the book entirely, but re-edited to suit other chapters in the book in a more seamless fashion. (i.e., instead of a full chapter on MySQL, the book now touches on it in talking about creating/accessing a database.) On thing that seemingly did get cut out from the CS4 book entirely was the 'Getting the Work Environment Ready' chapter, so readers may want to borrow a book (or two!) from a library about creating a LAMP server on the same machine or elsewhere.The CS4 book has added new content, and updated other chapters. The new content mostly covered...* Creating a Web Page and Adding Content* Using Spry Dynamic Effects and Components* Going Beyond the Basics with Spry and Ajax* Working with Templates and InContext Editing* Deploying Your Site on the Internet* Generating XML with PHPWhat I loved most about the new content focused on Spry, Ajax, and Dynamic website building.