Apache Web-Serving with Mac OS X: Part 1
Subject:   Why not iTools?
Date:   2001-12-31 07:50:19
From:   morbus
Response to: Why not iTools?

I've actually been contacted by Tenon (the people who make iTools), and I'll be reviewing the complimentary copy they sent me. If it's good, I'll be throwing together a few words on it for the O'Reilly Network. If it's not so good, I'll be mysteriously silent ;)...

Either way, yes, everything that iTools does can be done by hand - it's just a matter of how much time you want to spend learning (and doing) it.

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  • Why not iTools?
    2002-01-04 01:29:03  hanske [View]

    That's interesting! If one compare to HTML, I think it's safe to say that it's good to start out with simple hand coding (and simple pages) to learn what's going on, but at a certain point a visual tool starts be more practical for the lay out, and BBEdit or the like is better for polishing code, the two working in tandem.

    In the case of building a Web server, is the situation the same, i.e., is it better to start out by hand, and then perhaps combine with a visual tool like iTools? In the field of UNIX networking administration on, I haven't done any more difficult task than setting up UUCP on a couple of NeXT machines, but I found it useful to gain some understanding of how the configuration files actually work, setting up permissions correctly etc.

    Also, iTools do a lot of things one may not need initially, like eCommerce stuff. So perhaps hand coding is not too bad a path to tread even for a beginner, looking to set up a Web and ftp server? (I also want to do streaming QuickTime stuff)
    • Morbus Iff photo Why not iTools?
      2002-01-04 06:50:39  Morbus Iff | O'Reilly Author [View]

      Well, it depends how you look at things. I can sorta agree with your HTML thing, but I *still* use BBEdit to hand code and hand design all my pages - and my first site appeared in 1997. I've never used a WYSIWIG editor for layout - may have used Photoshop once or twice to quickly jot an idea, but I never depend or trust on a WYSIWIG's ability to create what I mean.

      >In the case of building a Web server, is the
      >situation the same, i.e., is it better to start
      >out by hand, and then perhaps combine with a
      >visual tool like iTools?

      Depends on the purpose or mission. If I'm building a webpage for my dog, I don't really care that it won't show in IE 3.0. But if I'm building an Amazon, then yeah, it better work in Mosaic too.

      Same thing with webservers - if I'm going to build a tiny testbed for my PHP coding, or just to sample some CGI or SSI code before I make the junk live, then yeah, a visual editor will save you some time. But if you're actually going to build a webserver that needs to be good at what it does, then I definitely lean toward "learn everything there is and baby it with loving care".