image I have always used Microsoft’s now-obsolete FrontPage software (which has since been replaced by their Expression Web tool) for creating websites, and it works pretty OK to do the basic stuff. Simultaneously, I’d always wanted to buy Dreamweaver, which is now owned by Adobe and sold as part of their Creative Suite package. But, the cost always held me back.

Well, I got to thinking that I could probably write off on my taxes the purchase of my new laptop, and the purchase of new software that’s good to have on my resume. Since I’m in the middle of a job search, both are truly warranted to improve my marketability. I’ve noticed quite a few contract agencies now ask if you have  your own development machine, as it saves them from having to provide you with one.

Some have also been asking for “portfolio” material, which has stumped me a bit, as I’m not sure if it would have even been legal for me to take with me code snippets that I wrote in my last job. But, it doesn’t matter, since it never occurred to me to save any, and I’m not there anymore. So, whipping together a few more websites will fit the bill, and doing them in Dreamweaver is a good learning opportunity.

Ironically, though I got laid off this year, my annual income was actually higher than it’s ever been, between the severance package and unemployment benefits. Crazy, huh? So, bring on the tax write-offs! I went on a small spending frenzy at the end of the year to maximize things I could write off for 2009.

This included biting the bullet and forking over almost two grand for the full Adobe Creative Suite 4 Design Premium package. This includes PhotoShop, Illustrator, and a whole bunch of other tools, but I don’t really know what all those do yet. Whoo, I hope it’s worth it! So far, I like Dreamweaver, after a week, I’m already pretty productive in it. I have just finished cranking out a whole new website for some friends who wanted help marketing their services on the web.

The only trouble I’ve noticed so far is that every time I use Dreamweaver, I hear Gary Wright’s Dreamweaver song  in my head, and often end up singing it all day. I wonder if this condition will subside, or if its an unavoidable side affect of using the software?

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