Dreamweaver 8 and Web Standards

I noticed this article come through my blogs.

If you’re reading this article, you probably already have an interest in the subject of “Web standards,” and are curious about the application of standards in a site that’s built with Dreamweaver.

Perhaps you already have an understanding of Web standards, but you’re not sure how to use Dreamweaver to create compliant code. Or perhaps you’re a Dreamweaver user who wants to comply with Web standards, use CSS more extensively, and produce more accessible documents. Either way, this article has the answers you need: it will show you how work to Web standards using Dreamweaver.

This article is actually excerpted from SitePoint’s new release, Build Your Own Standards Compliant Website Using Dreamweaver 8, by Rachel Andrew. This book shows you, step-by-step, how to develop a standards compliant Website using XHTML Strict markup and CSS. With this book, you can swiftly and successfully develop attractive, functional sites that conform to Section 508 legislation, and pass the WAI accessibility guidelines with a Triple A rating, using the extensive capabilities of Dreamweaver 8. As always, you can download this information in pdf format, if you’d rather read it offline.

As we’ll discover in the course of this chapter, there are excellent commercial reasons why sites should be developed to meet Web standards. The decision to adopt Web standards shouldn’t be about jumping on a bandwagon, or keeping up with the latest Web development fashion. It’s about producing good quality work, and knowing that your development approach will benefit your clients or employers as well as site visitors.

Web Standards Defined
As we’ll be concerned with Web standards throughout this book, let’s take a moment to clarify exactly what we’re talking about.

Web standards are specifications that direct the use of development languages on the Web, and are set by the World Wide Web Consortium (or W3C). These specifications cover languages such as HTML, XHTML, and CSS, along with a range of other languages, such as MathML, a markup language designed to represent mathematical equations, that you might come across if you have a specific need. The W3C also publishes the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)—recommendations that address the accessibility of Web pages—via the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI).

Read the Site Point article

WSS SP2 Released

The much awaited release of WSS SP2 has arrived.

Skip everything and go directly to the WSS SP2 Download Page.

Bil Simser as always has some great information up on his site about it, details below or you can visit his site directly. If you are not already subscribed to his blog it’s a definate on any SharePointers list.

Some juicy details from Bil Simsers site:

The WSS SP 2 release has substantial supportability improvements including:

Support for running on 64-bit machines in 32-bit emulation mode
Support for Reverse Proxy and Alternate URL support
Support for IP Bound virtual servers
Support for off-box SSL termination
Support for SQL Server 2005
Support for ASP.NET 2.0
Everyong running WSS and SPS are encouraged to update to WSS SP 2. However, although SPS SP1/RTM will be able to run on top of WSS SP2, Microsoft is restricting support for the “shared” functionality that is added in SP2 for SPS and WSS until SPS SP2 ships. The shared functionality is the support improvements above.

In other words, even though you’ll be able to install WSS SP2 on SPS SP1/RTM installs, you still need to wait for SPS SP2 before utilizing any of the newly-supported functionality above.

Of course if you have not already taken the walkthrough you can do that here.

FrontPage (o12) and Ghosting

A little late linking to this, I’ve been busy ..

Fitz has added some insight on the ghosting horrors of Frontpage and more importantly how they have been addressed.

From Mikes Blog

This is one item I’ve been holding back for a while. FrontPage “12” will be a great SharePoint site designer on many, many fronts. Like the current version, using it to edit a page in a SharePoint site will cause the page to become unghosted. Unlike the current version, ghosting will cease to be much of a problem. Here’s why…

There are two reasons why we don’t like unghosting: (1) it makes caching a lot harder and increases the number of database fetches, having a negative impact on perfrmance, sometimes by as much as 20%, and (2) it makes managing those unghosted pages very, very difficult. Enforcing an update to a template just isn’t something that’s workable.

Good news: (1) a combination of caching improvements done by the ASP.NET team and the WSS team will result in unghosting having little if any performance impact, and (2) thanks to WSS’ ability to use ASP.NET 2.0 master pages and given that FrontPage “12” supports their design and use as well, you can use master pages to keep your unghosted pages organized.

Want to know who’s responsible for this feature? Maurice Prather. Want to bet he’ll expand on this over at his blog sometime soon?

So, after the second quarter of next year, those of you who’ve been afraid of FrontPage needn’t be. FrontPage loves you — get ready to reciprocate.

New OneNote Features for Office 12

It looks like somehow the OneNote team got a hold of my wishlist for the next version. Chris Pratley gives us a peak at what is coming.

Table support is a big win for me. The lack of tables tended to be the end point of me working in OneNote on a report or proposal. In all my documentation, I tend to use a lot of tables to break up information. The fact that I couldn’t use them in OneNote limited by ability to use the product for everything – which is what I would prefer to do.

Dragging and dropping of pages and sections is also nice. I have put a lot of thought into the organization of my OneNote files and I have always wanted this ability to move things around easier.

Chris’s blog always offers a nice behind the scenes perspective of an interesting team working on a fairly new product. It’s now wonder his blog is as popular as it is.

Compiled Help and Shared Folders

One small part in the ongoing development of our SharePoint Web Parts is documentation to go along with them to ease the pains of installation and usage.

One format we’re shipping our help files in is compiled help (.CHM).

When working with these files today I realised that it would appear that you cannot ‘view’ these files via a shared folder. I have no idea why but it just seems to be how it is.

Just figured I’d throw this out there in case anyone smacks their head off a desk wondering why their .CHM files are not working after you compile them.

I am not 100% sure on this but it’s just something that I came across today when creating these files. If you ever have trouble viewing one it may be because you are opening it from a share on a different computer. If so copy it to your local machine and give it another go.

Microsoft Reorg …

Skip this and read the article

Microsoft on Tuesday announced a sweeping reorganization of the company into three new divisions, a shift that will lead to the retirement of longtime Windows development chief Jim Allchin.

The plan calls for a reorganization of Microsoft into three large divisions led by individual presidents, each reporting to Steve Ballmer, Microsoft’s chief executive.

• Jeff Raikes will head up the company’s Business division, which will house Microsoft’s Information Worker group (which includes its Office product line), and its Business Solutions packaged applications group.

• Kevin Johnson and Jim Allchin will be co-presidents of the Platform Products and Services division, which will comprise Windows Client, Server and Tools and the MSN division. Microsoft said Allchin will hold that new position until he retires, once the company ships Windows Vista at the end of next year.

• Robbie Bach will be president of the Entertainment and Devices division, which will oversee games and mobile device development.

The huge reorganization is designed to streamline the company’s decision-making process and improve product development, Ballmer said in a statement.

Internet Explorer 7 and InfoPath

There are definately some issues with existing InfoPath forms, I had some problems with InfoPath forms that I use on a regular basis not being able to open (Throwing cannot create DataObject errors).

Unfortunately it was enough for me that I had to uninstall Internet Explorer 7 (for now). The uninstall process is not overly intuative and it actually took a few minutes to figure out exactly what to do.

A little advice on Internet Explorer 7 – Prior to installation (or during) it will ask you about backing up IE 6. (Make sure you do it).

To uninstall the program you need to go to Add/Remove Programs and then click the “Show Updates” button. That is where it’s hiding.

On the off chance that you are trying to uninstall and ‘didn’t’ back-up IE 6 during the install I have come across this tidbit of information that may or may not help.

** Note – I have not tried this and cannot vouch for it’s reliability or usage – use completely at your own risk **

There is a $uninstallie7beta (or similar name) folder in the Windows folder. Within that folder is another folder called spuninst (or similar) and it has a .exe that launches the uninstall program.

The problem is when you click on it you get a msg that says you have to run it from the same acct as you installed from.

Simply edit the spuninst.inf file in the folder, scroll down to the section “Prerequisite” and remove those 2 lines. Save the file, and viola! The uninstalled worked beautifully and IE6 is back.

SharePoint Messenger Contacts

* Update*

I have decided to wait a few days before actually letting this list stay live, I want to give everyone an opportunity to have their names removed should they not want them in the public listing. I have had some that prefer to remain off the list due to their corporate emails being used.

If you would rather not be included in the public listing please let me know. Until I am certain everyone is ok with it I will keep the listing offline for now.

** end update **

Many of you over the last few months have been involved with the messenger conversations we’ve been having on a semi-regular basis.

My MSN Messenger SharePoint Group has grown significantly over the last while so I decided it was time to keep track of them in a more organized fashion.

For those that have never really taken a look at what messenger exports as a contact list it is XML based so I have edited the list to only contain SharePoint contacts.

There are 30 or so names in the list now, I will continue to add to this list as new contacts come in. If for any reason you would rather not be in the public list please let me know..

To Export your list:
Go to Contacts, Save Contact List

To edit your list
Open the list in a text editor such as notepad and simply add the entries

To Import a list
Go to Contacts, Import Contacts from a File

If you would like to be added to the list feel free to email me Please notify me on if you would like to be part of the “PUBLIC” listing.