This is a list of software that made my life easier and freeware that I wish I had in the beginning.
Freeware tools to help in unzipping and downloading software. Read this page first if you have never download a program from the Internet or are downloading many files for the first time and using an older PC operating Windows XP or lower.
If you are just starting out you need two HTML editors: A converter so you have something concrete in front you to work with. You need one HTML editor so you can add and correct things that are beyond the ability of your first editor.
HTML Kit 292 is a free version that works on my Win 7 64 bit computer. I prefer the HTML toolbar in RJ Text.
What You See Is What You Get editors once you find a good one is an invaluable tool. Some of the editors out there give faulty code, others lack the ability to re-edit and update your web document. The editors listed below passed both tests most of the time. I can crash anything.
SeaMonkey a browser based on FireFox has a WYSIWYG editor included in its arsenal of tools called Composer, which supports dynamic image and table resizing, quick insert and delete of table cells, improved CSS support, and support for positioned layers might be the answer. In the summer of 2009 I started to test it and by 2014, I find myself down loading it again on my next computer when I need to troubleshoot an errant table where I wrote the HTML code wrong.
If after trying all this you still fill flabbergasted go one step simpler:
Text 2 Web might be the program to get you started. You can convert your text document to HTML code. One button link back to Text 2 Web is generated. So you have an example to start from. You still may have to use HTML help sites to figure out how to do what you want with graphics and links, but at least you have something in front of you that you can call your own that can be opened in a HTML editor and is valid HTML code.
Ten years later, I continued to use HTML converters to quickly publish short stories and poems for the Northside Writers Over Coffee onto the Internet.
txt2tags a text converter that allows you to change a txt file into a HTML or XHTML file. Also converts other files not used on the web like LaTeX.
Occasionally, I find a magazine looking for material that I've covered somewhere on my website and want to re-work the content slanting it towards a publisher.
Gwenndel Web is a WYSIWYG editor for Wikipedia and other Mediawiki sites. It allows to easily edit pages without knowing the tedious wiki syntax. It runs on Windows XP, Vista or 7.
Although many of the above HTML editors include a spell checker, many do not.
Global Spell Checker a little program that allows you to use MS Word's spell check on any program if you already use MS Word.
Filezilla FTP uploader for beginners and advanced users.
xenulink After a while your pages have so many links it is hard to keep track of them all. This freeware program checks all the links on your site in one gulp. However, about 800 links in the comment section on my blog was too much for xenulink and it ignored my request not to look at Wordpress links.
Broken Link Checker is a Wordpress plugin that lets you edit links from people who made comments years ago and now their links are broken. To install this plugin, I went to Add Plug-ins in Word Press and did a search for broken links and installed it from within Wordpress. A link for Broken LinL Checker appeared under Tools.
Online Broken Link Checker finds the broken links and what line the link is on in your code. Did not crash when I had the 800 bad link problem at my Wordpress blog.
Buttons, backgrounds, cool text effects, photo's all use different freeware tools. For using graphics for websites, the smaller the graphic the quicker it loads. When working with book publishing, look for graphic editors that allows you to work with high resolutions of 300 dpi or better.
OCR is also a type of graphic. Sometimes you need to scan in a document and end up with workable, editable text.
The more I use the Internet the more junk mail from companies I delete from my inbox. Here is a tool to help slow down your e-mail address on your website being the cause of still more junk mail.
E-Cloaker converts the characters of e-mail addresses and text into browser-readable Unicode.
It took a day and a half to cloak all the e-mail addresses on all three of my web sites. Hopefully, I cut off the source of the problem and now all I must do is stop the spammers who already have my e-mail address and are using it without mercy.
PDF files are non-editable books, manuals, manuscripts. Tax forms from the IRS are distributed as PDF files. E-books can be a manual or a "book". But real books that you can pick up and hold in your hands are also made with PDF files. Actually, pdf files became major building blocks from converting MS Word documents to printed books.
Nitro Pro: Upgraded PrimoPDF and have been very happy with the $140 version. As well as the ability to print a print ready pdf file from any word processor, this editor allows me to edit pdf files on little things that drive many people nuts, (ie. spelling and punctuation errors.) It also lets me work on one chapter at a time to prevent my word processor from crashing when I have many pages and much formatting. Then Nitro allows me to add the page numbers later. On the negative side: Nitro Pro does not allow resizing from within the program. Nitro Pro will also eventually crash when the file is too large with too many edits. One file that I worked 2 months on, turn into a giant bit file. Although it imports text at 300 dpi as a PDF fle from MS Word, it reduces a 300 dpi pic in Word to less than 57 dpi. In the 2 month project, I worked restoring a corrupt Word file as an editable pdf file. The Word file would allow me to cut and paste and print from it but the pictures were messed up. So I had to reposition each and every pic and resize it at 300 dpi with a graphics editor and insert it into a graphics editor.
On the next picture book job, when the file grew to large for Word to handle, I divided up the chapters into a separate file for each chapter. When I went to merge the chapters together when I found out about the low resolution graphics issue. The freeware dedicated PDF Merger software PD Fill PDF Tools and PDFKBuilder gave similar results. Many of the photo's were scanned in at a low resolution. LibreOffice has a External Editor command which made increasing dpi in a graphics editor easier except when I exported them at 600 dpi I found out that the high resolution must be a text only thing. So I used a print to pdf program which imported my newly edited pic to pdf at 300 dpi on most pages. 300 dpi is the minimum any measurement below 300 dpi is failure.
Adobe Reader Read E-Book files and print tax forms. Unnecessary if you chose FoxIt or invested in Nitro Pro.
Foxit Reader Foxit Reader – (download) A free PDF full feature document viewer. Has the best rep on the Internet.
InDesign CC 2015 also rounds off the dpi below 300 dpi. One website suggested converting your files to picture file and resizing the jpg files.
PDF to Image Free converts your PDf file into jpg pictures file (1 for each page).
FastStone Image Resizer Resize all the picture files at once. Does 8x11 up to 800 dpi in a batch file. Free for home and personal use. $20 for businesses.
Both IfranView (Freeware $12 cash only business license) or xn view (Freeware for home and 26ce for business) will allow a user to make a pdf file from images.
Blogging is different than a website in that you don't need to fool around with a service provider to post you're articles. It's a combo of a guestbook and a website without learning HTML. Though learning HTML is still a plus sometimes when working in Word Press. Blogs use a combination of HTML, CSS, and PHP language, so they are hard to fix when something goes wrong but easier to use graphics and spacing than a straight HTML site.
Word Press works well if your website provider carries it as part of their package. SmatteringsBook's Blog exists because like many other web servers Bluehost provides Word Press as a tool. Reports across the web complain that the free standalone version drive most people off the wall because the learning curve is too steep and what you can do is limited.
Blogger by Google is the choice of many. Blogger is free, easy to setup and use. Wolfmanted's Blog was created with Blogger. One can also associate their website with Blogger.