Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
You don't have to buy software anymore.
Well, maybe you do, if you're the information systems department. Or if you need technical support (lotsa luck with that 800 number). Almost certainly, if you're a professional doing a professional job.
But for home users, free open-source software is the way to go.
I told you last week about FileZilla (http://sourceforge.net), an open-source FTP (file transfer protocol) client, the latest to join the LouPak collection at www.dolinar.com. This week we'll talk about Nvu (http://www.nvu.
com), a free Web page editor that runs on Mac, Windows and Linux. It is a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) editor - you don't have to write lines and lines of obscure code to create a Web page, even if it does help to understand raw HTML to get through some rough spots.
Now WYSIWYG HTML editors are not a dime a dozen. Serious site developers use Adobe (formerly Macromedia's) Dreamweaver 8, at $399 a pop, which may be as much as you paid for your computer last Christmas. By the time you get done tricking it out with scads of add-ins, bolt-ons and templates (http://www.macromedia.com/software/dreamweaver), all of which make a professional's life easier, you've got dinner for two at the Rainbow Room. Somewhat less impressive is Microsoft FrontPage 2003 (http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/ FX010858021033.aspx), aimed at lightweight business users and designed to link up with other Microsoft Office components, at $199 for new users and $109 for upgrade and showing its age.
Things go downhill rapidly from there.