upgrading from the old days' flash to... what?

Discussion in 'Website Creation' started by iconoclastica, Mar 4, 2020.

  1. Years ago I made my website (www.iconoclastica.nl) based on flash and hand-coded html, which served my needs and was reasonably safe against rogue downloading. For a number of years now I note ever fewer computers are able to display the flash app. Now, after a long time of neglect, I'd like to bring my site up to date with modern technology. What is the present day advice on tech or web applications to do so?
  2. I couldn't see all the galleries on your website without installing (or at least unblocking) Flash. Which I don't want to do. So I can well imagine why you'd want to upgrade. I live in NL too so I have some idea of your site content. I'm no expert on websites but my guess is that the main choice is initially between:
    1. DIY using a 'content management system' (CMS) with a suitable website 'hosting' provider. Most hosting providers will install an empty CMS for your website. Or they provide 1-click tools for you to do this yourself. You then use the standard CMS-tools and plug-ins to create pages, galleries, menu's, contact forms, etc. The most popular and easiest to use CMS is Wordpress. There are lots of examples out there but this is one (in Dutch) I set up for my Big Band: http://www.powerswingbigband.nl/.
    2. Using a cloud-based 'website builder' such as (for example) Wix, Weebly, Squarespace or Wordpress.com
    I've built a couple of websites using Wordpress but these days I would go with a cloud-based 'website builder'. Unless you have very specific requirements that they don't meet. Wordpress - and the huge number of themes and plug-ins available - might give you a bit more flexibility. The downside is that you need to keep Wordpress and the plug-ins you use up to date as new versions become available. Or agree with your hosting provider that they do this for you. From time to time, concerns are raised about how vulnerable Wordpress sites are to hackers. But with almost half a billion Wordpress websites (35% of the internet) Wordpress is a big player. More info in this article

    I don't have any experience using a cloud-based website builder. But they're easy to use. Best of all, you have no worries about keeping software up to date.

    My advice is to play around with a few of the most popular website builders for photography. And look at some examples set up by other photographers. Hopefully you'll get some advice here based on experience. You might want to get an overview from these 2 articles:
    - 10 Best Photography Website Builders | Our Top Picks (March 20)
    - https://www.cmscritic.com/top-8-website-builders-for-photography-websites/

    Hope this helps,

  3. One more suggestion: I came across this blog post that lists some photography websites that were built with squarespace. Squarespace was chosen as the overall 'best' website builder for photography in one of the articles I linked to. I have no experience with Squarespace, but maybe the photography sites listed will give you an idea of what you could to with a cloud-based website builder.


  4. I insist that web pages pass The W3C Markup Validation Service and most of the "big" packages don't seem to do well at that. What do you want to do that requires flash? We don't use it at work and I removed it at home, as have many people. FWIW, I don't do anything remotely fancy on my site and just use hand coding and css. IMO, that's still a good way to go unless you're selling things directly or need some really exotic formatting.
  5. Thanks, Mike, I will look into the sugestions you make. Can't say more until I have seen them. I am involved with a wordpress site too, but we find it hard to have wordpress do what we like, rather than the other way round. But the main raison d'etre of that site is not showing photos and WP is indeed an excellent tool for the other types of content.

    @conrad: In the time I made my website I needed flash only to make a kind of slide-show with slide-in/out animation. Today I would choose css to do the same thing. But as a bonus, the flash application well hides the location of the images, so one needs more than the right mouse button to download the photos. So far, all the web-apps I have seen work with Javascript/Css leaving the resource locators in the open. If that is all there is now, I guess I will have to go with the flow, but for the moment i am still reluctant to choose that direction.

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