Ajaxian: Time to Take Dreamweaver Seriously?

Ajaxian’s Dion Almaer asks an interesting question of the Javascript/Ajax crowd – is it time to take Dreamweaver for Ajax seriously again? I think the question is really a broader one- is it time to take Dreamweaver seriously again – to which I respond with a booming “HELLS YES”. Particularly in workflow ecosystems where a combined designer/developer workflow is crucial, I might add.

The comments in the Ajaxian article’s thread are interesting- I was pleased to see there’s certainly a contingent of folks within giving a thumbs-up to recent release(s) of DW, along with the expected ‘WYSIWYG editing is for dolts’ responses, the latter of which Dion’s question may actually be a valid one for. My answer is simple- I’m a designer who likes code. I spend most of my time in DW’s code view exclusively, and occasionally do quick mockups/proof-of-concept work with the WYSIWYG tools. DW CS3 is speedy and nimble for me (particularly when compared to the glacial performance of MX 2004 and perhaps DW 8), and I have no problems using it regularly as a code editor – again, with the occasional drift into the GUI-driven features if I’m doing quick tests/proofs.

Now I can’t (and won’t) argue with those who simply prefer completely stripped-down tools like Notepad or TextMate/BBEdit – I occasionally do as well (have been a BBEdit user longer than a Dreamweaver user), and understand the minimalist approach – but the extended features of DW (along with it’s recent updates for code-centric folks) are way too much to discount wholesale just for percieved street cred on my part, or the spectre of old (and now- largely resolved) code trust issues in the visual editing features.

Anyway, I’d be interested in your comments, suggestions and opinions on this, too- as Dreamweaver is a app very near and dear to my own workflow I’ve also got strong (and yes- potentially biased) opinions upon it myself. Sound off below, why dontcha?