Thursday, 10 April 2008

To Handcode or Not?

This is a question that has plagued the ages.

Do you hand code your website or use an editor?

My personal preference is to hand code, I have always handcoded, ever since the days I used to build websites using Notepad.

But these days there are times when you need to use an editor, this is not necessarily due to not being able to code CSS to play around with divs. If you are using the .NET arena to create your site, you are most probably using part of the visual studio family whether it is the express editions or the full versions of the studio.

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Now you may be asking why, the answer to this is simple as all .NET pages are pages that require compilation, if you add page elements such as text boxes, there may lack references. This means that when you code against them they are not available in the cache of the page.

So if you have ever added a page control to your .NET page and had to maek use of such coding as FindControl, then you have come across this issue.

The issue of hand coding in todays light is not as important as it used to be, along as you actual know the code behind the scenes, and are not blagging your way through life. Then using the editor is a fine solution. This is especially true if the site you are designing is more interested in looks than functionality, then you want to spend more time on graphics than on the code.

So in short I choose personally to handcode always have always will, I like this as I can code all kinds of cool stuff, front front end DOM javascript to backend SP (Stored Procedures). But I also know that I am not a designer and if I was I would be more interested in the layout and look than exciting backend code.

Sean J Connolly
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