Microsoft Expression Web 2 (4 out of 5)
Microsoft Expression Web is used to design and build websites. The first version was meant as a replacement for Microsoft Front Page. Microsoft Front Page was a nice package of tools for the web designer; there were many improvements to create Microsoft Expression Web and many more for Microsoft Expression Web 2.
New Functionality and Features
The layout of Microsoft Expression Web 2 looks like a professional coding tool and can be adjusted. The left side of the screen is where the folders are located where you will save your website. The middle area is where you will actually write or add code and can view what you are building. The right side is for various other tools and add ins.
What’s great is the support for PHP. This is done using code validation as well as a rich library of auto fill commands. The older version of Microsoft Expression Web and Microsoft Front Page don’t really support PHP at all.
Not only does it support PHP development but it also has support for Active X, ASP.net, Silverlight, HTML, HHTML, XML, XSLT and is build around CSS.
The software also has many web deign standards built in and will check and validate them allowing the user to view the violations and change if necessary.
Complaints about Microsoft Expression Web 2
The main complaints reported from various blogs, support and reviews are that it does not work with the Macintosh platform, the cost is high, steep learning curve and problems have been reported on the functionality of editing CSS and using java scripts. Other complaints are that the software package is great for beginners but for designers wanting more powerful support, it’s not there.
Is it Worth it?
Overall, Microsoft Expression Web 2 is a good tool. The price for the program is lower than it’s main competition. For users of other windows based software, especially Microsoft’s software, the transition is smooth. There maybe a little training required to get the new user up to speed but not a lot. However if you are totally new to the world of website building this product could be like drinking from a fire hose while learning how to use it.