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Getting familiar with the Contribute user interface and navigation

Getting familiar with the Contribute user interface and navigation

The Contribute interface is different from Dreamweaver; it’s more like a browser-based application or an office-productivity application (see Figure 1).

  1. Open Contribute. If you are working without an Internet connection, a dialog box will appear, asking if you would like to connect to the Internet. Select “Try Again” to connect, and it will open locally.
  2. On the application’s left side, the Pages panel lists the pages and sites you can edit. (Initially there are no pages and sites you can edit; the Pages panel displays “Browser:Welcome” for now.) When you add sites to edit, they will show up here. You’ll add one below.
  3. Beneath the Pages panel, the How Do I panel includes help topics and tips.
  4. The toolbar in the Contribute editor/browser is at the top of the screen. It is much like a regular web browser, with buttons for Back, Forward, Stop, Refresh,and Home Pages choices. When you select a page to edit, the toolbar options change to edit options.
  5. The right side of the screen contains the Contribute editor/browser. Contribute is different from Dreamweaver; it is a full browser as well as an editor. You can browse your page to navigate to linked pages. While browsing, you can you can edit the page directly without switching between the Contribute editor and the Contribute browser.

    When you open Contribute for the first time, the Contribute browser displays a tutorial so you can learn more about Contribute, or you can start editing pages with Contribute immediately. Leave the Macromedia Contribute page displayed. Leave the checkbox “Don’t show this page on startup.” unchecked as you may want to explore the tutorials after going through this tutorial.

Figure 1. The Contribute editor/browser interface.

Figure 1. The Contribute editor/browser interface.
(Click the image for a full size view. It will open in a new window.)

When you use Contribute, you must connect to a web server to specify pages you wish to edit. You can connect to a web server in two ways:

  • You can create the connection to the site, much like you would in Dreamweaver MX.
  • You can use Dreamweaver MX 6.1 or Contribute to create a connection key. You’ll give the connection key to your users (by mail or they can download it from your intranet server). In this way, the administrator can set up users easily without giving them specific steps, explaining how a web server works, or how to use FTP. It means you can get down to business fast.