Whatever Became of Composer?

Saturday September 19th, 1998

On a slow news Saturday, Jason Kersey, the MozBin Admin, writes in with some questions for us. Jason asks, "What's happened to Composer? Is it dead? It seems that is has not changed since 4.0. Its toolbars remain the same and nothing has been added. Should composer be kept?"

What do you think?

#12 Re:Whatever Became of Composer?

by Frank Hecker <>

Sunday September 20th, 1998 3:01 PM

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I can't speak for Netscape, but here are some of my thoughts on Composer, for what they're worth (remember, I'm in a sales group, not a development group :-)

First, if you want more authoritative info on Composer you should contact Kathleen Brade, module owner for Composer; see the module owner's list on the site for contact information and even some more detailed information about Composer plans. This might be a good subject for one of ChrisN's status reports and/or interviews.

Second, I just don't see Netscape dropping Composer as a product feature. Unlike Netcaster, there are lots of people (including me) who use Composer for creating basic web pages and web-based documents. The fact that there are more powerful HTML editors available is somewhat irrelevant; I (and I suspect others) just want a simple way to create basic web content, one that's reasonably well-integrated into Communicator and convenient to invoke and use.

Finally, making Composer a full-featured up-to-date HTML editor, with full CSS support and the like, will almost certainly require it to be rewritten to use the new layout engine. As with support of new layout in Mozilla, that requires both finishing the new layout engine and doing additional integration work to use it appropriately. Personally I presume that that's too much work to get done for the 5.0 release, but rather will have to wait for a post-5.0 release.