So you are probably wondering how an average every day kind of
guy like myself could possibly create such a masterpiece of a
homepage. Well, this page will explain how the impossible was
attained. I call it my toolbox, and I will open it up here and
show you all of the tools in there and other secret weapons.
Hopefully others can use this information to help them also
either start their own homepage from scratch or even improve it
that much more.
My computers are not what you would call state-of-the-art
multimedia blah blah, but it they are sufficient for your
average day-by-day family needs, getting the work done. This is
what I have:
Computer One / ZGISH
Inspiron 8200 UT with
Pentium IV 2.0GHz + 15.0" UXGA.
512MB 266MHz DDR Memory (2X256MB).
40GB 9.5mm 5400RPM IDE Hard Drive.
(Fixed) 8X DVD / 24X CD-RW Combo Drive with Decoder Sotware.
64MB ATI M9 Video Memory Card.
56.6k V.92 Capable Internal Modem & Adapter.
Integrated 10/100 Network Card.
Truemobile TM1150 PC Card (wireless).
Logitech Optical Mouse.
Pro and MS Office XP Pro.
Computer Two / XGISH
Dimension 4400 with
P4 1.8GHz/256K 1024 MB266Mhz DDR RAM Memory (2*512).
80GB (7200RPM) IDE Hard Drive.
24 x CDRW and 16 x DVD.
SW DVD Decoder for XP.
17" Performance Midnight Grey (P793) Monitor.
64MB Ti500 GeForce3
Creative Labs SB Live
Value Sound Card.
European - Harman Kardon 395 Midnight Grey Speakers.
10/100 PCI WUOL Network Card for Dimension.
MS Intelli-Explorer Optical 4 btn PS/2,USB.
US - Dell Quiet Key (3 Hot Key) Midnight Grey Keyboard.
Computer Three / KGISH
Dell Dimension XPS T600r.
Pentium III 600 MHZ.
448 MB memory (256 + 128 + 64).
15 GB IDE hard drive (5400rpm).
32 MB NVIDIA TNT2 M64 AGP video card.
28/48X speed IDE CD ROM.
Creative Labs SB 64v.
Logitech optical w/ MouseMan wheel.
V17" TCO-95 monitor.
Computer Four / LGISH
Cloned True Green 80486.
AMD 486 / 66 MHZ.
32 MB memory (16 + 16).
850 MB + 250 MB hard drives.
VGA video card.
Sound Blaster card.
15" Hyundai monitor.
TrueMobile TM1184 Wireless LAN Router.
HP OfficeJet G85 Mulit-functional printer, fax, scanner, copy.
Iomega 100 Zip-drive.
HP DeskJet 720C Series printer.
Agfa SnapScan 1212P scanner.
Logitech QuickCam Pro webcam.
The computer KGISH is hooked up via a NextHub HA050 5-port
10BASE-T hub, XGISH wired and ZGISH wireless to the Wireless LAN Router which in turn is connected to the Hub, and via the Hub all to the Alcatel IDSN/ADSL Modem for Internet access.
There's a ton of software out there, and believe me I have
an awful lot on my machine. However, I really only use a small
subset of all this junk. Below I have listed the most important
programs which I actually use regularly for my homepage:
v5.0 - an advanced HTML-editor for those hard-core web
designers who have had enough of WYSIWYG programs which just
miss out on what is really required.
Swish 2.0 - Flash-like
and other special (pretty amazing) effects without having to
use Flash. Creates all the cool flash
effects you need for your web site in a fraction of the
time it takes with other programs. Great stuff to play around
with. Also in order to import my videos into Swish, I use the
utility called V2F
v1.0 which converts the videos AVI-format into the
v3 - a cascading style sheet (css) editor which contains
everything you need to create flexible cross-browser style
sheets. Integrates seamlessly into Homesite. I love this
5.02 - the best graphics tool in the world, of course. I
would an old version and would love to upgrade it but I do
not have the bucks right now.
CSE HTML Validator
v5.02 - is a fast, powerful, inexpensive, indispensable,
highly user configurable, and easy to use HTML and CSS
development tool that assists in the creation of
syntactically correct HTML and CSS documents. Seamlessly
integrates into Homesite.
Schemer - free online version of the
tool for deciding what harmonic colors are suitable for you
site themes. Another more advanced color picker is AI-Software
SmartColor which is a free tool
specifically designed for web designers.
PuTTY v0.52 - this is what I need to use for those Telnet
sessions when the nitty-gritty Unix type of stuff has to be
done the right way. Actually, it is hard to find a decent
Telnet Client without having to fork out alot of money, so I
was quite pleased to discover this fine utility which is
LeechFTP - a freeware FTP client with
some nice features, just enough and completely
straight-forward which is great for getting the job done. I
have also heard that SmartFTP is pretty good, but I
have never gotten around to figuring out its fancy (more
v2.0.4 - low-priced easy to use webcam manager for
grabbing images from your web cam, preparing them with
various effects and uploading them to your web site. I use it
for all my shots for the Official
Cyber-Gish Webcam page.
Sleuth - a free spidering software that
checks Web sites for broken links. Link verification is done
on "normal" links, images, frames, plug-ins,
backgrounds, local image maps, style sheets, scripts and java
applets. It displays a continously updated list of URLs which
you can sort by different criteria. A report can be produced
at any time.
Meazure v1.0 -
free utility for measuring objects on the
screen such as images, windows and icons, and capturing
arbitrary portions of the screen. Another great tool which
others might find a little easier to use is
Cool Ruler v1.5.
Moveable Type v1.4
- This is a fantastic web-based personal publishing system
which I use for my Blog. It is
designed to ease maintenance of regularly-updated news or
journal sites, like weblogs. The Movable Type system runs on
your own webserver, giving you complete control over your
- is a popular freeware utility for creating
accurate thumbnail images and scaled-down copies from a wide
range of popular picture formats.
JBuilder 8 -
Borland's comprehensive visual development environment
for building Java applications, applets, JSP/servlets,
Here is the list of technology stuff I either use alot,
sometimes or am trying to learn in my pursuit to becoming a
future famous web designer:
Server Side Includes (SSI)
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS2)
DHTML (using DOM)
Flash (using Swish).
I listen to alot of music for inspiration, in order to increase
the flow of creative thought. I like modern rock and roll,
seventies music, classical and lately so-called ambient
music. Basically I either listen to my own collection of
CDs, but mostly I get off on Winamp which allows access
to all kinds of audio streams. My favorites are:
All of these channels are available via Shoutcast. This is
Nullsoft's Free Winamp-based distributed streaming audio
system. Thousands of broadcasters around the world are available
for all kinds of (interesting) music.
My host is called A+ Hosting and
until now I have been pretty pleased with it. Performance is
sufficient, down time has been zero, and great technical
support. Got a great deal on their A+ Eternal package for a
lifetime account ($25 per year and one time $169 sign up costs).
Banner free, own domain name, 250 MB, anonymous FTP for up to 7
concurrent users, SMTP/POP3 server, SSI, CGI, (secure) FTP
access, Telnet, etc. More than enough for me now.
I am mostly a self-made web designer, having picked up most of
my information through emails, forums, newsletters or just
plainly surfing around all over the place. I have experimented
with my new knowledge and tried out alot of new ideas, which I
think is in the end the best way to improve one's skills.
However, as a lover of real books I have purchased a number of
stuff which I share with you here:
"Web Design in a Nutshell" - Jennifer Niederst.
"Essential CSS & DHTML for Web Professionals" -
"Cascading Style Sheets 2.0 Programmer's
Reference" - Eric A. Meyer.
"Programming Perl, 3rd Edition" - Larry Wall et al.
"CGI Programming with Perl, 2nd Edition" - Scot
Guelich et al.
"Perl Cookbook" - Tom Christainsen and Nathan
"XML in a Nutshell, 2nd Edition" - Elliotte Harold
"The Java Programming Language, 3rd edition" - Ken
Arnold, James Gosling, David Holmes.
"Effective Java" - Josh Bloch.
There are millions of links out there on the Internet and there
is no way I can even get close providing an exhaustive list.
However, the links which I happen to use the most are the
following (in alphabetical order):