Trying to build an architecture for a website

I'm a C# WinForms developer and am venturing out to build my first website.  I've used ASP.NET, read a little about LINQ, and am currently reading "JavaScript, The Definitive Guide".  I want this website to display graphics and have numerous calculations tools.  I'd like this to use modern tools to help me build a site that won't quickly be out of date.  So my questions are pretty general at this point.

I expect to use SQL Server 2008 Express since it's free.  I will use Visual Studio 2008, ASP.NET 3.5 when possible.

What advice can you give me?  What tools should I try and use? What things should I avoid?

I will try and learn the technologies I'll use then will move to get some idea of the overall architecture of the program.

newbiewebSr. Software EngineerAsked:
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newbiewebSr. Software EngineerAuthor Commented:
Also, please consider recommending the use of templates from Microsoft, if they will help me easily realize a robust architecture.  Are they CAB templates?

Stop looking at webforms and look at MVC. Webforms while making things easier for winforms developers to "understand" is a leaky abstraction that will cause many headaches in your code. After push back from the community MS came out with MVC (a much more standard way of writing web apps). Here is a good article to start with



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newbiewebSr. Software EngineerAuthor Commented:

Thanks for the tip.  My last contract was an upgrade to an MVC type architecture, and I found it powerful.  

I assume this your link would show me MVC which is distinct from the Castle Project?

Fundamentals of JavaScript

Learn the fundamentals of the popular programming language JavaScript so that you can explore the realm of web development.

yes it is Microsoft's MVC. Castle is also a good implementation but often times a more difficult sell.
In terms of design, try and get your layout and CSS implemented early on.  
Use a seperate CSS file and avoid style attributes on HTML elements (ie, ALL styling goes into a CSS file).

AJAX (the UpdatePanel in .Net 3.5) is nice, but not essential.  Don't use it for the hell of it.  If wanting to use AJAX, think about calling out to web services to get information you need.  This can lead to significant improvements over network latency.

And as mentioned, MVC is looking like a good way to go in terms of architecture.
newbiewebSr. Software EngineerAuthor Commented:
I'm sure I'll have a lot more questions going forward.  In fact I already posed a question about downloading the MVC Framework.

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