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Review categories > Website Design Books > Creating Dynamic Websites
By: Charley Morris
Review for 'Creating Dynamic Websites'

Rating: 3 of out 6

Written By: Scott Fisher

Page Count: 350

Cover Type: Softcover

Published By: Addison Wesley

Date Published: 01/1997

List Price: $24.95

Author's Site: http://www.webdevelopersjourna...

Creating Dynamic Web Sites is an overview of several types of multimedia, with the Web in mind. It covers graphics, animation, 3D, audio and video. Some may find the title misleading, as most folks use the term "dynamic Web site" to describe a site that generates pages on the fly from a database, as opposed to a "flat" site of static HTML pages. This book has nothing to do with that kind of stuff - it's just about multimedia.

Chapters include:

  • Interacting with Graphics - design principles, photography, scanning, image maps, converting images.
  • Three Dimensions
  • Digital Video for the Web
  • Interacting with Animation - discusses Java, Shockwave, animated GIFs, Director.
  • Interacting with Story - Explains the elements that make up a story.
  • Web Sound
  • Interacting with Human Beings - discusses user interface design.
  • Test Cases - includes a brief section on CGI.
Creating Dynamic Web Sites is heavy on theory and short on nuts and bolts. The section on graphics covers a lot of ground, including photo composition and design, setting up shots and lighting, scanning, use of editing software and more. There's good information here, but there's not a lot that's specific to the Internet.

The rest of the book is similar - plenty of left-brain general design principles, but not much in the way of code or hands-on tutorial material. The cover boasts of "Java applets, Shockwave movies and CGI scripts," but there ain't enough code in this book to add 2 and 2. HTML examples are thin on the ground, much less CGI scripts or Java. There's no CD, either. A links section at the back lists a dozen or so resources, including real finds like and

Not that this is a bad book. Plenty of Web designers could stand to think a little more about aesthetic principles and less about tapping in code. If you're looking for a good solid overview of the different types of multimedia and how they fit into the Internet world, Creating Dynamic Web Sites might be a good choice. If you're looking for meat and potatoes Web design stuff, though, I'd look elsewhere.