Tools To Make Your Web Development More Efficient

Are you a developer who is sick and tired of having to do everything manually? Does sifting through your code to hunt down tiny mistakes make you want to scream? Then perhaps some of these web development tools will come in handy for making your work more efficient.

CSS Grid Builder

This is a framework that was developed by Yahoo! that enables a web programmmer to create a CSS-based and web standards compliant page in minutes. It comes with over 1000 page layout combinations – once the developer has found the one they want, they simply press ‘show code’ and the HTML is automatically generated for them.

Clean AJAX

This tool has been designed to speed up AJAX development, which is just not possible when done manually. It does this by cutting down the amount of code that a web programmer has to write (and, ultimately, rewrite), as well as giving them access to some of the common design patterns that are used in various AJAX applications, making the whole process much faster.

CSS Sprite Generator

This tool has been designed to reduce the number of HTTP requests are needed for rendering images in web browsers. A web developer will upload all the required images to the generator, which combines them into a single ‘Sprite’. The program can also automatically generate the CSS for them, making it highly useful for any developer.

Firebug

This is an extension created by Mozilla Firefox that gives a developer a wide range of web development tools and features that they otherwise may not have had access to. The extension comes with an in-built JavaScript debugger, which allows web developers to ‘step through’ their script and perform benchmarks to pinpoint the causes of slow running script. Doing this manually can take hours.

CSSTidy

This tool is an open source application that aims to reduce file size through analyzing text, fixing and optimizing the CSS code. It also enables a web developer to standardize CSS code formatting automatically, which can save a lot of time. The tool also has the ability to find and remove styles and properties that are no longer in use.

If you are a developer who would love to have more time on their hands for your work, the above tools are perfect for you. They have been designed to make the web development process more efficient and productive, leaving more time for the other important things.

Understanding the Benefits of PHP Web Development

With the online marketplace witnessing the emergence of a plethora of e-commerce websites, Hypertext Preprocessor or PHP web development service has gained tremendous popularity in the web development realm. PHP is a general purpose programming language which is popularly used for developing dynamic websites. There are multifarious benefits of PHP and hence, this programming language finds application in more than one million of web servers and is also being used in the development of more than 20 million websites and Custom website development is easier with PHP and the language is used to develop dynamic webpages and a myriad of other web solutions such as shopping carts, web calendars, content management systems and more. PHP has an inbuilt memory and never overloads the servers, rather it enhances its processing speed. Today, there are numerous PHP web development companies, but for the online business owners it is imperative to choose the right development company which will offer the best service and add value to the money.

PHP applications have revolutionized e-commerce web development in true sense of terms. With the e-commerce and online shopping portals requiring a fully functional, user-friendly, search engine friendly and visually appealing websites and applications, PHP web development service ushers to meet all these necessary requisites in the best ways. PHP can be embedded into HTML and dynamic visual applications such as Ajax, Flash can be easily integrated with this programming language. PHP supports several databases including Informix, Oracle, MySQL etc and developing a website in PHP requires minimum usage of code as the language has an innate memory building option. The developers thus need not gather the external codes while creating PHP based applications.

PHP Web Development curtails the cost, time as well as the effort which is required while creating an attractive, user-friendly website. The language is compatible with most of the operating system such as Windows, Linux etc and can also be used in command-line scripting and in client-side GUI applications. The process of PHP Web Development is fast and stable and it guarantees a secure interface. An application built on PHP is easy to work upon. There are minimum requirements of external plug-ins to run a PHP programme, rather, it can be executed entirely through the server, without any contribution from the end users.

One of the most astounding benefits of PHP web development is that in case of any help or query, the developer can always take the assistance from the PHP online forum. The programming language is pretty simple and easy to understand and the troubleshooting modes are also easy.

PHP web development helps a website to be vibrant, impressive as well as search engine friendly. PHP written scripts can help the webmaster to keep a track on the visitor’s activities and can get feedback from them as well. PHP also helps in better content management systems.

If you have been thinking about developing your e-commerce website which will outclass your nearest competitors in terms of design, user friendly attributes, superb navigational tools and easy content management systems then undoubtedly, PHP web development will be your choicest option. As the business owner, you need to understand your own requirements in the best way and find a professional PHP web development company that will let your venture grow in leaps and bounds. A competent PHP development company can surely add value to your e-commerce site website. The team of skilled PHP developers in the website uses all their experience and skills to deliver you the best results in the shortest possible time, enabling you to address and achieve your immediate goals and targets in the perfect fashion.

Top 8 Firefox Add-Ons for Web Development

As a web developer, you can never have enough tools to help make web development faster and more efficient. Mozilla’s Firefox web browser has a feature called add-ons (similar to extensions or plugins), which add extra features to the browser. Note: Not all add-ons are available for all OS platforms. The add-ons discussed here are compatible with Firefox 11, OS X Lion 10.7.3.

Firefox 11 by default already has very impressive tools for web development. It includes (descriptions from the Mozilla website):

  • Web Console – Lets you see logging messages from your JavaScript code, JavaScript and CSS errors and network activity. Search and filter to find just the events you need to look at. Plus, you can directly interact with and explore your page via JavaScript.
  • Page Inspector – Peek right into the styling of any Web page by visually selecting the page element that you’re interested in.
  • Scratchpad – Scratchpad lets you write JavaScript code that can interact directly with the contents of a Web page.

With these powerful tools already included, there are actually even more features you can add to Firefox for even more power. Here are my favorite add-ons specifically used for web development:

  1. Web Developer 1.1.9 – Also known as the Web Developer Toolbar (WDT), this add-on installs various web developer tools to the browser. It will allow you to quickly disable any JavaScript, CSS or image files on website. The toolbar also gives you easy access to any cookies, meta tag information, and forms on the web page you are viewing. One of my favorite features is the ability to auto fill forms for form testing. The “name” of the form element will be used as the form value, so when testing a form with many fields, this feature will save you plenty of time. The truth is, the WDT has so many different features, I haven’t been able to use them all yet!
  2. Firebug 1.9.1 – Firebug integrates with Firefox to put a wealth of development tools at your fingertips while you browse. You can edit, debug, and monitor CSS, HTML, and JavaScript live in any web page. It’s like the built in Web Console and Page Inspecter but with more features. Some developers will debate on which is better, WDT or Firebug. From my experience, WDT is more suited for front end designers that do a lot of CSS coding and Firebug is better for JavaScript/AJAX debugging and web development. I say use them both.
  3. MeasureIt 0.4.10 – Draw a ruler across any webpage to check the width, height, or alignment of page elements in pixels. This ruler is one of the handiest add-ons I’ve used.
  4. Firesizer 1.7 – Allows you to resize the window to specific dimensions. This add-on shows the dimensions of the current browser window in pixels.
  5. HTML Validator 0.9.5.2 – Adds HTML Validation to the View Page Source of the browser. The add-on is based on Tidy and OpenSP, both algorithms that were originally developed by the Web Consortium W3C. The details of the errors are seen when looking the HTML source of the page. If you care about your code being valid, then try this out. Although the WDT has a HTML validator feature, those validation results are shown to you from an external website, rather than being shown along with the page’s source code.
  6. Rainbow 1.5.1 – This add-on has a color picker and eyedropper + saving colors. It allows you to try out colors with drag and drop. Want to know the hexadecimal notation (HEX) color of a particular blue that is in a jpeg image without needing an image editor (like Photoshop)? With Rainbow, it’s no problem.
  7. Lazarus: Form Recovery 2.3 – Lazarus securely auto-saves all forms as you type, so after a crash, server timeout, or whatever, you can go back to the form and get the form data back. If you have a lot of forms that need testing and would like to use actual form content, this add-on will make it a less tedious task.
  8. FireFTP – FireFTP is a free, secure, cross-platform FTP/SFTP client for Mozilla Firefox which provides easy and intuitive access to FTP/SFTP servers. If you are experienced with FileZilla, FireFTP will be familiar.

And of course, the latest version of Firefox can be downloaded from the Mozilla website.