Softpress Freeway

If you are a print designer (mac based) scared of coding who needs to produce a simple website Softpress Freeway could be the programme to use.

What I really like about the programme is that it is very similar to quark xpress – you have your graphic and text boxes that are all pretty self explanatory and you literally place your graphics and text on the page and resize them on the fly. Freeway does all the backend stuff – it decides what type of image the graphic should be and the quality – giff or jpeg, but you can overide these if you wish. You can use the programme without touching a table (unlike dreamweaver) unless you want to (this feature is included).

There is a new feature which now lets you design using CSS – again without coding which I am yet to try out. What is also useful is there are a large set of actions available (some free some commercial) to extend the program – including adding lightbox pop up effects, building in a CMS so your client could edit the text online etc etc.

The newest version of Freeway also links up with a shopping cart to make building simple ecommerce sites easier.

Once you have built your site within Freeway there is a publish and upload button, you enter your FTP name and password and it generates code and graphics which it uploads to your server.

While I want to learn to understand code more, Freeway is a useful programme for designers and non designers alike who want to be able to design sites easily without touching code. It is possible to build dynamic sites using freeway too, but this is not something I have explored.

I think if Freeway was available for PC as well I would have a much larger following, as it is so easy to use.

If like me you are an experienced designer for print check out Softpress Freeway and the support forum