I recently read some stuff that was about using tools to design for Microsoft Products, and one tool sited was Dreamweaver. Now I know everyone has their pet applications to use for design and development, but with the future of Master Pages in ASP.NET 2.0, I got to thinking, you know it wouldn’t hurt for these die hard Dreamweaver users to crack open Visual Studio and take a look around. I am not saying throw out Dreamweaver and only use Visual Studio, but at least get comfortable enough with it that you could effectively get into the application and make code edits and understand where you are in a project.
As technology evolves, the two roles of designer and developer are coming closer and closer together. Designers have been given tools to make development easy, and developers have been given tools to push pixels around a screen. We both look in horror at the product of the other. But perhaps if designers could get their hands dirty with developer tools, they could understand better how the back end works and therefore design better because not only do they have in mind how to make a great looking site, they have in mind what will need to be done to actually execute it.
I have always felt designing with the resulting code in mind (meaning how are you going to chop up that pretty picture to make it work in code) is a best design practice, but I just don’t think many people actually do it.