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Adobe GoLive CS

Adobe http://www.adobe.com
$399; $169 upgrade from GoLive 5.0 or 6.0. Also available as part of Adobe Creative Suite Premium, $1,229. Academic pricing available.

Standard shift or automatic, Coke or Pepsi, coffee or tea; the merits of each can be debated ad infinitum. The truth is, many choices we make boil down to a matter of personal preference.

In the world of Macintosh web design applications the choice is largely between Macromedia Dreamweaver and Adobe GoLive. GoLive is my cup of tea. I feel comfortable in GoLive’s work environment and appreciate its integration with other Adobe products.

I also appreciate Adobe’s strong support for the user group community. Adobe provides software applications for MUG ONE to review (including this one). This software is used to create Newsbreak and to maintain our group’s website, which saves us considerable expense. Adobe values the feedback—positive and negative—that these reviews provide. It’s a win–win proposition.

The latest version of GoLive, Adobe GoLive CS, includes a number of new features. It offers a more flexible and customizable work environment, introduces Co-Author for collaboration, and integrates even more seamlessly with other Adobe applications. The new features make for a worthy upgrade, either by itself or as a part of the amazing Adobe Creative Suite Premium, which combines CS versions of GoLive, Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign along with Acrobat 6.0 Professional and VersionCue, a workflow application that ties all the other apps together, for $1,229 (academic price is $399).

The first change you’ll notice when you open GoLive CS is the two-column vertical Objects palette on the left side of the workspace, the same spot where other Adobe applications keep their Tool palettes. I much prefer this arrangement, but if you prefer your tools in the rectangular box format of earlier GoLive versions, you can click a button on the palette to toggle to the other configuration.

Other palettes and toolbars can now be stacked, combined in various configurations, docked in various places in the workspace, and tucked out of the way. You can create multiple workspaces that are optimized for different tasks, then select and manage them under the Window menu. This all makes it much easier to see the pages you’re working on, especially if you’re using a smaller monitor.

GoLive CS’s integration with other Adobe applications really shines with Smart Objects. Drag a native Photoshop, Illustrator or Portable Document Format (PDF) file into GoLive CS’s Layout view and the file will be converted into a Smart Object. That file can then be cropped, resized and optimized without changing the original file. However, if you make a change to the original file, the GoLive Smart Object file will also be updated.

For those of us who deliver content in more than one medium, “Package for GoLive from Adobe InDesign” is a phenomenal time saver. Before, content that was created in InDesign, such as an illustrated review, had to be laboriously recreated in GoLive by copying and pasting in text and graphics. The Package feature allows complex layouts of text and images to be exported quickly from InDesign CS to GoLive CS. Graphics come into GoLive CS as Smart Objects, and text tags are converted to CSS styles. If you regularly produce printed materials that you want to move to a website with minimal fuss, InDesign CS and GoLive CS are a very smart investment.

With all the new features to learn about, I was disappointed to discover that neither the stand-alone version of GoLive CS nor Adobe Creative Suite Premium includes a training CD for GoLive. Photoshop CS, Illustrator CS and InDesign CS all ship bundled with top-notch training CDs from Total Training, http://www.totaltraining.com/ the video training firm that has also provided free one hour training sessions in Adobe’s booth at recent Macworld Expos.
Total Training does offer a GoLive CS training CD for an affordable $49, but it would have been nicer if the CD came with the application.

Both the stand-alone GoLive CS and Adobe Creative Suite Premium include one seat of Adobe GoLive Co-Author. Co-Author allows a content contributor, that is, a non-web designer, to update specified parts of a website without accessing (and potentially messing up) the site’s structure and design.

For more information, to order, or to download a free 30 day tryout, go to http://www.adobe.com/products/golive/

– Elsa Travisano
System Requirements:
PowerPC G3, G4, G4 dual or G5 dual processor, Mac OS X v.10.2.4 through v. 10.3 with Java Runtime Environment 1.4.1, 128MB of RAM (192 recommended), 200 MB available hard-disk space, CD-ROM drive. QuickTime Pro 6.3 with the QuickTime 3GPP Component required for multimedia features.
Copyright ©2004 by Elsa Travisano. This review appeared in the March 2004 issue of Newsbreak, the newsletter of MUG ONE - Macintosh User Group of Oneonta, NY.