Genii Weblog

Making the Web Editors list more of a public resource

Sun 12 Jun 2005, 08:54 PM

by Ben Langhinrichs
When I first started the Web Editors list, I did it mostly as a private resource (you may remember my first post about this: What is your favorite web based rich text editor?) to help me with testing what is now called CoexEdit.  One reader contributed a whole list of editors, which I incorporated in my list.  It later turned out that the list which had been contributed was actually created by Paul Browning.  I wrote to Dr. Browning to ask for permission to keep using the list, and he turned around and asked if I would take over maintenance of the list, since he no longer worked for the University of Bristol (where it was developed) and did not have time to keep it up.  I agreed, but it raises a question.

Since my semi-private web editors list has now morphed into a public resource, what should I do to make it more useful?  A lot of people come looking for these editors, but there is little in the way of a rating or other way to differentiate them.  I don't have time or breadth of systems to evaluate every one, but it seems like it would be good to be able to tell people a bit more about the strengths and weaknesses of each.  There is a feed back link on the page, but I am wondering if people think there should be a more specific link for each editors, perhaps with a rating and comments, so that it would be possible for readers to self-rate the way they do on Amazon or on hotel sites.  Would that be overkill, or valuable?  What do you think?  Are there other ideas you have about how to make the list more valuable.

Go check out the Web Editors list right now, even if you have been there before, and come back and let me know what you think.  Don't worry, I'll wait.

Copyright 2005 Genii Software Ltd.

What has been said:

325.1. Thomas Tallyce
(15/06/2005 10:45)

The main things that a list of these really needs is:

- Whether XHTML output is supported. Even in these days of standards, so many of the editors produce grotty output of the kind unacceptable for use on a these days..

- Whether the editor function buttons can be customised/removed, e.g. to remove presentational elements such as FONT specification (which has no place in modern web development).

- the API situation. E.g. which languages is an API available for (or is there even a proper API?)

- Also, separate out the browser support aspects from the other Remarks.

- Perhaps add some more info into remarks, e.g. whether right-click menus are enabled, that kind of thing.

Even if the above items can't be obtained easily for each one, at least making a column for them means that the info can be filled in as it comes in. It might even provide an incentive for the developers of each system to make clearer whether these aspects are supporter, or even implement them if (shock) they are not.

Personally I use FCKeditor and it really is very high quality.

325.2. Ben Langhinrichs
(06/15/2005 10:55 AM)

Excellent feedback. I actually have a fair amount of this information for many of the editors, so I will see what I can about adding it.

Follow up question: Is it helpful to have things like browser support graphical, the way we do now, so that you can simply glance over the list and see what you need, or is there a better way to present the data for easy use?