Until iWeb came along, RapidWeaver was pretty much unchallenged as the best way for the beginner on a budget to put together an attractive web page. It's still by far the quickest tool.

Every RapidWeaver web page requires a 'Theme' and a 'Page type'. Each theme is like an envelope wrapped around the page type: there's an area of each theme to which you can add content that depends on the page type you've chosen.

A 'blog' page type lets you add multiple text entries ordered by date; an 'HTML' page type lets you add any kind of code by hand; a 'file sharing' page lets you choose files to share, and so on.

All you have to do is customise the page type's content accordingly, although there are no true WYSIWYG capabilities for doing this, just a text editor and menus appropriate to the type.

This app is expandable and reasonably customisable. If you don't like its themes, you can develop your own or download some more. There's also an Inspector palette for changing some of the fine details for the pages and your site as a whole, such as filename extensions, page metadata, site favicon, breadcrumb trails and more.

Accurate name

RapidWeaver is pretty accurate in its description. Once you've got your head round the central idea of the 'theme envelope', it's a very rapid way of developing a site. The fact that the interface isn't 'one size fits all', but tailors itself to whatever page type you're using, means that there's very rarely a quicker way to put together a page.

Unfortunately, it's a bit limited in its capabilities. Most of the HTML basics are available for styling text, but you've got to start using the 'HTML page' to do advanced work, leaving you on your own. Try it - but you might start to feel constrained. Rob Buckley