What do I want for Christmas? Before I tell you, I think we should first get better acquainted. My name is Jerry, I am nineteen years old and am currently in my second year of college, majoring in art and animation. I am a digital artist, and therefore I can’t be bothered by nonsense like writing lines of code! Why can’t I design websites and let the computer code it for me? Well actually, I can do just that, or rather I will be able to if Santa’s good to me. What I want for Christmas this year is a copy of MediaLab’s SiteGrinder 2. I am assuming based on your interest in this article’s title that you or a loved one may be a digital artist or designer. If my assumption is correct, then this may just be the perfect Christmas gift!
SiteGrinder 2 is a very smart Photoshop Plug-In that allows artists to create any website lay out they could conjure up and SiteGrinder 2 will slice it, code it, and spit out a CSS-rich website! So from right inside Photoshop, any design can be transformed into a website without having to write even a single line of code! This is so because of SiteGrinder 2′s innovative use of a “hint” feature that lets the artist tell the application what to do with each layer of the the design. For example, a layer with the hint “-button” in its name will be transformed into a button once it’s been Grinded. Hints allow the artist to do anything from creating dynamic navigation menus to photo and thumbnail galleries in minutes!
You may be wondering, as I had, how good SiteGrinder2′s outputted code could possible be. Again, I’m an artist so what do I know about code? Not so much, but judging by favorable reviews on the Blogcritics Magazine (See helpful links), only CSS purists will have minor tiffs with SiteGrinder 2′s code. The Grinded websites are 100% web compliant though, and you could see by the samples on MediaLab’s official website that the possibilities with SiteGrinder 2 are endless.
This application would be the perfect gift for any digital artist who doesn’t have the time to invest in learning CSS and XHTML. I know that college has kept me pretty busy with school work this semester. With SiteGrinder 2, I can create websites much more efficiently and still have enough time to dedicate to my school work. Web design is a great source of extra income for the college student, and though the price of SiteGrinder 2 may seem steep ($249 student price for SiteGrinder 2 Pro, $349 non student), I feel that that it will quickly pay for itself. Maybe with SiteGrinder 2, I won’t have to live off of Pizza Bites!