Blog Editors, Yet Again

Not that these things matter so much to me. I’m perfectly ok with writing posts directly in a browser. But I like it when there are better solutions.

As it took me almost an hour to refresh WordPress categories in Flock, I’ve taken this, my main blog, out of Flock. Too bad, though, as I have a kind of investment in this blog. Not that it’s likely that Flock will become my main editor but I did notice that I have a tendency to use my personal Blogspot blog more while I’m giving Flock a whirl.

I’m writing this in Windows Live Writer. Yesterday, it crashed miserably while I was simply switching blogs. As WLW is in beta, I wasn’t that surprised and I should have used this as an opportunity to help out the developers. But I kind of lost my patience with beta software. I used to love beta software and didn’t mind the occasional crash. But I need to improve my workflow and not be bogged down with bugged down software.

WLW does seem like a well-planned editor but I already see a few quirks. Like the fact that there’s no easy way to activate a “spell as you type” feature. I’m guessing the feature is there but it’s not very easy to find.

The categories menu for this blog doesn’t allow for direct addition of categories in the categories field. You can add categories by opening the list and adding categories from there. Makes sense for blogs which have reasonable numbers of categories but since WordPress.com blogs have categories serving as tags, it’d be useful to add categories directly. Of course, it’s easy to add Technorati tags and I’m guessing that commonly used tags are somehow kept in the interface. But I prefer to use WordPress categories as tags because they work as both links from WordPress.com and as actual Technorati tags.

But WLW has some cool features. Like the link glossary which seems to be relatively close to what I was wishful-thinking about yesterday. Actually, I quite like the “Insert Hyperlink” interface as it’s very elegant, it’s just a keystroke away (ctrl-k), it’s fully keyboard-operatable, it has access to previous posts on the author’s blogs (including entries posted by other authors on collaborative blogs), and it can add some link properties like XFN. Good job! Now, if I can just have access to my complete Web history and favourites using some kind of cross-platform synchronisation mechanism à la Google Browser Sync, I’m happy.

WLW also has some neat features like blog stats and comments. This might explain why so many WordPress.com bloggers use it as their main blog editor.

We’ll see how this goes.

About enkerli

French-speaking ethnographer, homeroaster, anthropologist, musician, coffee enthusiast. View all posts by enkerli

5 responses to “Blog Editors, Yet Again

  • enkerli

    Evan,

    Wow! Another responsive team! I’m impressed!
    I sent you a private email. Do tell me what details could help your team deal with such an issue. I do understand my blog has an overwhelming number of categories (I use them like tags) but I’d like to use Flock as a blogging tool all the same.

    Thanks!

  • Evan Hamilton

    Hello,

    Sorry to hear about your problems with Flock. We haven’t run into the category refreshing problem you mentioned…do you mind sending details to my email address below? It will help us fix the problem for you and other Flock users.

    Thanks!

    Evan Hamilton
    Flock Community Ambassador

    evan at flock dot com

  • Joe the Ninja « Disparate

    […] Blog Editors, Yet Again […]

  • Joe Cheng

    Forgot to mention that we support spell-as-you-type by default, but only for U.S. English and only on machines whose regional settings are configured for U.S. English. If that’s you, then I don’t know why it wouldn’t be working and would love to hear about it.

  • Joe Cheng

    There’s a log file we maintain that should have the details of most errors you encounter–although depending on the severity of the crash, we may not always be able to log it. If you feel like sending it to me, you can find instructions on how to find it at http://jcheng.wordpress.com/writer-tips/logfile, and my e-mail address is joe.cheng *AT* microsoft.com.

    Thanks!

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