What is Dreamweaver?
Adobe's Dreamweaver is far more than a simple HTML editor. With its support for a great number of scripting languages (PHP, ASP, CSS and more), Dreamweaver is the most powerful, most fully featured web developer tool.
Available for both Mac and Windows operating systems, this cross platform development tool allows users to preview websites in their web browsers. It combines a great WYSIWYG editor, an FTP client, and a convenient scripting environment, which supports advanced autocomplete and script formatting options. Also, the latest CS4 version features a Live View mode which allows the designers and the developers to view their changes in real time - whenever they make a change to their website's code, the Live View will give an instant feedback to their changes. This is a great time-saving feature, which can help the professionals avoid errors and which allows them to easily experiment with different sets of code.
Dreamweaver for all
Dreamweaver is an industry standard for a web development environment. It allows any type of users, from beginners to professionals, from designers to developers, to easily and conveniently create simple or complex dynamic websites.
The skilled professionals usually use the Script Mode of the Dreamweaver. That way they can access the code and take advantage of the autocomplete, error checking and script formatting features. For the users with zero knowledge of HTML, the Design View mode provides an advanced WYSIWYG editor which can generate all the HTML code.
For the designers and the developers with more advanced skills there is a Split View functionality, which allows them to edit the code directly in the scripting window and to see the changes in the WYSIWYG editor in Design View mode without the need to switch between the two.
No matter what your present skill level is, Dreamweaver CS4 is the one application you need to consider first, and last.
Actually, there is no true alternative to Dreamweaver, which can provide all the great features included in this professional web development software. But actually, there is a very small group of users which can utilize all the features provided by Dreamweaver. Also, there are enough web development software products designed for specific tasks and groups of users.
For all other advanced and skilled users there are many script editors like CoffeeCup, Notepad++, QuantaPlus, BlueFish, Aptana and more.