tools of the trade
With over ten year experience in designing and programming web-based computer applications, humble servant software has a broad base of knowledge in creating a great website. The following gives you a brief overview of the tools we use to build our dynamic, database-driven websites.

Macromedia ColdFusion
ColdFusion is one of the fastest and easiest ways to build powerful Internet applications. I like using ColdFusion because it reduces the amount of code I am pushing to the server. For instance, instead of placing a header and footer on each page, ColdFusion allows me to include these files as each page is processed. The savings is two-fold: one, I only have to create the header and footer once; and two, I don't have to touch every page if a phone number changes or my client wants a different color scheme. ColdFusion not only saves money in development of the website initially but it really pays dividends over time in maintaining and updating the website.

MySQL Database Server
The MySQL database server is the world's most popular open source database. Its architecture makes it extremely fast and easy to customize. On top of that it is very fast and well-suited for handling web-based applications...and it's basically free.

Javascript is a web-standard scripting language. I use javascript in my websites to create different effects on a web page and enhance the user interface. For instance, javascript can be used to verify form elements before they are processed or allow visual effects like toggling pictures as in the example below:

The most common use of javascript is for picture rollover effects and fancy drop-down navigation menus. Javascript is very powerful and simple to use and it enhances the professional look and feel of your website...if implemented properly.

cascading style sheets (css)
Cascading Style Sheets is a simple mechanism for adding style to Web documents. Each tag used in creating a web page is considered an object. As in life, all objects contain properties (e.g. colors, textures, temperature, etc.). CSS allow you to set up a standard for all of the objects on a web page. In this way, the base font will always be Arial or Helvetica, the background color will always be purple and the page will always have a margin of a half-inch all the way around. Much like including the headers and footers in ColdFusion, CSS gives you the power to change the look and feel of your website by modifying one file. You can set up your site for Teal Tuesdays while the rest of the week is pink.

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