NewsForge Reviews Nvu

Thursday April 8th, 2004

NewsForge have published a review of the first public release of Nvu, the Web development application based on Mozilla Composer. The review compares Nvu with Microsoft FrontPage, concluding that Nvu is better for basic editing tasks but that FrontPage has more advanced features.

#1 Not the most useful comparison

by Dracos

Thursday April 8th, 2004 8:24 AM

The author prefaces the review with comments about his dislike for FrontPage, which is almost universally reviled by designers. Hopefully around Nvu .5 (let Daniel get some killer features implemented first) someone will compare it to Dreamweaver.

#2 The F word

by ozphactor

Thursday April 8th, 2004 12:33 PM

Anything is better than FrontPage.

#3 NVU 0.2

by donovangn

Thursday April 8th, 2004 1:15 PM

The newer version (0.2) has already added my favorite functionality: templates. This is one thing Dreamweaver does really well. There's a few things that are currently holding me back from using this early version of NVU as my main HTML editor: it wraps the code it generates (making it very ugly and hard to read) and is a little buggy (I get weird numbered error msgs when seemingly nothing wrong is going on). Considering this is an early version of the program, it looks damn good so I'm excited to check out future releases; I've been waiting for a great cross-platform WYSIWYG HTML editor and NVU has an excellent start.

#4 Estimate time for

by zookqvalem

Thursday April 8th, 2004 1:27 PM

I am wondering what would be the estimate time for the to be ready for prime-time use. It said soon, so no problem. As the time goes by, I couldn't help but to wonder about how soon or how later. Does anyone know? I just can't wait to pitch in or something. :-)

Thanks, Zook

#5 good and bad points

by smkatz

Thursday April 8th, 2004 3:49 PM

I would never ever praise Microsoft for their integration. The fact that "FrontPage is equipped with a long list of graphic tools. Its membership in the Microsoft Office suite gives FrontPage the advantage of direct, fully compatible access to the output of PowerPoint, Draw, Word, and so forth. Nvu still has a long way to go in this area to catch up." is not a fair statement.

Whether I use GIMP or Macromedia Fireworks, I never expect good graphics tools in a HTML editing application. The Microsoft Photo Editor is good for printing images, and has some cool special effects, but is not a web graphics tool at all. It has no image optimization, button generators, or other tools that I expect in a graphics package.

This is one area where I do not think monopolization works. Seperate applications, with menu items for launch, like Dreamweaver has, and for that matter Word has (it can launch Photo Editor from within Word from its own editing tools) is much preferred. I remember yelling at it, "I prefer GIMP." "GIMP is good."

Maybe we need to take some of the vector drawing tools that are OSS and improve them to incorporate some of the more web-centric features, but we should not copy OLE.

"For quick, basic editing the general usability of Nvu is superior to FrontPage, in my biased opinion."

It is. Nvu does need to decide whether it aims for standards-compliance (and thus it is OK to manipulate the code), or whether it should not ever touch the code. I don't mind if it touches my code, as long as it doesn't screw it up. But is this really possible? a backup option would be great. Composer does have bugs that screw up code. Nvu's Glazman (-: admits that ASP code will be destroyed by NVU.

I like Frontpage's ability to insert forms, images, links etc. using the toolbar buttons in code mode. I was about to sugggest Dreamweaver's dual-panes so that the code appeared in a source pane as you were using the WYSIWIG view in another, but NVU might get in trouble for copying that.


P.S The main issue now is documentation and support. How does one use the template feature? A: I don't know.

#6 Re: good and bad points

by PC1

Thursday April 8th, 2004 8:36 PM

Your comment is too long and boring. I have to disagree with what ever you said!

#8 Re: Re: good and bad points

by michaelH

Friday April 9th, 2004 2:52 AM

I have to disagree with your post because it was too short! Go get an education and read the whole original post. It was actually quite thought provoking and raised a number of valid questions in my opinion.

#10 Re: good and bad points

by Axord

Friday April 9th, 2004 10:26 AM

The idea of dual-panes is so very obvious that I don't think Macromedia would bother with legal action. That is, if they're not souless spider-monkeys.

#12 RAD the lizard

by jvlb

Saturday April 10th, 2004 6:22 AM

There are other editors with a dual pane display and I seem to remember similar functionality in some of the IDE's I used in the '80's. I do think it is crucial that the editor give the user the option to not modify, format, rearrange or otherwise screw up MY CODE!

#7 Nvu 0.2 isn't there yet

by sanderg

Thursday April 8th, 2004 9:57 PM

Nvu 0.2 is a nice app, but it does not keep from correcting my HTML (I had a link with "&" in it which I wanted to correct to "&", but it refused to let me do it - changed it back all the time), and when working with e.g. bulleted lists, text sometimes disappears or is wrapped to /dev/null. I haven't reported these as bugs yet because I did not yet find out where to report them. Once these basic issues are solved, and source HTML editing is really possible, the app will be much more mature.

#9 Re: Nvu 0.2 isn't there yet

by zookqvalem

Friday April 9th, 2004 8:45 AM

Saw this similar bug somewhere in about this. "&" is not the only character that have this problem but other character does as well. To make the long story short, it is about the inability to tell the different between the "&" and "&nbsp" (for example) when it come to characters. Something like that.

#11 Re: Re: Nvu 0.2 isn't there yet

by jgraham

Saturday April 10th, 2004 2:48 AM

Specifically, & isn't a legal character in HTML except in the context of an entity. Because of the way that composer/Nvu is designed, it will automatically replace instances of & with their correctly-encoded counterpart. In general this is the right thing to do but there are some instances (where the document is being post-processed) that this undesirable behavior.

#14 Re: Re: Re: Nvu 0.2 isn't there yet

by sanderg

Saturday April 10th, 2004 1:23 PM

If you edit the source code (or have a link rel=stylesheet to a dynamic stylesheet, with a URL with "&" in it), you should know what you are doing, and the editor 'should' not touch the source code. I cannot find anything related to Composer, will do a forum post.

#15 Re: Re: Re: Nvu 0.2 isn't there yet

by danielwang

Saturday April 10th, 2004 11:14 PM

Try pass HTML with & in links URLs to W3C HTML validator. It won't. & needs to be converted to & amp;

#13 if you have a bug..

by smkatz

Saturday April 10th, 2004 10:11 AM

1. Post it on the forums. Let us see whether we can confirm it, and narrow it down. (Again, documentation would include in what circumstances NVU corrects code that cause people problems, but that is for future. I also think we can come up with a way to fix the code-changing problems.)

2. When confirmed, send it to feedback [at] nvu.comm. (sic)

What is a true NVU bug?

Linking to the Bugzilla bug for the original Composer bug would be great if it is a Composer-specific bug (in "editor"). A bug in the WYSIWIG pane would be "editor", a source pane bug would be a Composer bug, and a bug in the FTP file management pane in NVU would be an NVU bug. NVU bugs are not yet reportable in Bugzilla. If it is a Composer bug, glazou may already know about it. Again, ask on the forum and we will advise. If it is an NV bug, it should definitely go to the address in step 2.