web beginner questions

Mr J

I'm brand new at web design and really want to start making my own web sites along side graphic & print design to offer an extra service to clients in future (when i leave uni! I have a lots of spare time to learn)

I know a few people who build sites on wordpress software. I know its free and easy to use by the looks of it!
Just chuckin a few questions in there...

-Is wordpress a good starting point for a beginner like myself?
-what would you recommend for a starter?
-What 'should' I use to build my sites on?
-What other options are there for free software/programs?
-what software do you folks use?
-Is software the correct term for these sort of sites? publishing application tool? publishing platform?
Welcome to web 101! If you are thinking about offering web to customers as a service you MUST learn how to code in my opinion. It is the only way to offer professional quality websites. Learn about HTML first and what the tags actually mean and what they are for. Then look at CSS (cascading style sheets) to separate style from content correctly. Then perhaps some basic javascript and PHP knowledge.

Some suggested learning resources would be;

HTML and CSS Tutorials, References, and Articles | HTML Dog
Web development tutorials, from beginner to advanced | Nettuts+
SitePoint » Web Design, Web Development, Freelancing, Tech News and more
A List Apart
Zend Developer Zone (DevZone) - Advancing the art of PHP
jQuery: The Write Less, Do More, JavaScript Library

From there you can choose to learn a CMS/Publishing Platform (such as Wordpress if that is what you want to do) to offer websites that customers can update themselves.

Be prepared for a steep learning curve :icon_Wall: to start with but, once it all starts to 'click', you'll really enjoy pulling a website together from scratch. You can always ask questions here if you get stuck.

As for software I tend to use Dreamweaver to improve my workflow and efficiency.

Hope that helps.
Thankyou so much for the links and the advice. I will be looking at them straight away :)

Yes I like the look of wordpress (I have already had a play with it) Its very beneficial for clients to update the sites themselves too, which wordpress offers.

I will take it step by step and definitely be posting many questions.