Must one be a web page designer to make use of RoR?


#1

Hey guys,

I’m new to the world of web site development. Although I’m in the
process of learning RoR, I’m not a graphics artist nor a web developer
or web site designer. With that being said, does anyone have any
suggestions for tools to use to create the actual interface for a web
app based on a RoR framework? Obviously the default output of RoR is
fine for development, but now that I need to create a real user
interface - ie. beautiful layout, pretty graphics, intelligently flowing
navigation, etc. - I’m stuck. I guess I could hire someone part-time
just to create the actual UI, but then that would not make me a
“complete” web app developer. I have no natural talent for drawing,
graphics, etc.

What’s a person in my situation to do? I’m relatively new to
programming, and (almost) everything in RoR makes sense to me - but I
feel like my inability to draw and create graphics is holding me back
from being a complete RoR developer.

Any suggestions?


#2

www.openwebdesign.org

– G.


#3

On 03 Mar 2006, at 16:02, Steve Armstrong wrote:

navigation, etc. - I’m stuck. I guess I could hire someone part-time
just to create the actual UI, but then that would not make me a
“complete” web app developer. I have no natural talent for drawing,
graphics, etc.

What’s a person in my situation to do? I’m relatively new to
programming, and (almost) everything in RoR makes sense to me - but I
feel like my inability to draw and create graphics is holding me back
from being a complete RoR developer.

Any suggestions?

Well, to be honest, you have the choice of either

  • learn webdesign yourself: look around at how other people do it,
    get a feel with it and then go out and by the CSS Mastery book
    (http://www.cssmastery.com/), it’s really good. From my personal
    experience, I have always found hand coded CSS to be a lot better
    than what a WYSIWYG editor calls a CSS layout.
  • get an open source template and expand on that, but I haven’t found
    any that are really in the league of a professional design, they’re a
    good starting point, but that’s about it
  • hire someone to make you an initial design, then do the CSS work
    yourself based on his/her design
  • just let someone else do it, which is probably going to save you a
    lot of money as your application grows, if you’re not a designer,
    you’re going to waste tons of time on simple things.

I think a lot of people on this list will agree with me when I say a
real cool web app always consists of a good programmer together with
a good designer, it’s hard to have both at the same time (but that
doesn’t mean the programmer can’t have a bit of a design talent or
the other way around).

Best regards

Peter De Berdt


#4

Steve,

You must absolutely learn CSS, and have a basic toolbox alongside your
Rails editor.

I’d recommend :

https://addons.mozilla.org/extensions/moreinfo.php?id=60&application=firefox
The Web D. plugin helps you look into a page css, change it and
see the change live, etc…

Alain


#5

Guys,

I bought the Head First book today. Looks like I’ve got some reading
(and learning) to do. Thanks for the advice. I’m on my way…