Tuesday, November 22nd, 2005

FCKEditor: Rich Text Editing

Category: Component, RichTextWidget

<p>We recently covered the Dojo Rich Text Editor. Here’s FCKEditor, another widget that aims to be easy for users to work with and easy for developers to install and customise.

Support for keyboard shortcuts is impressive, but the browser gets in the way sometimes. I got burned a couple of times with Cmd-Left, which in most editors would normally jump to the start of the line, but in the browser (Firefox), it took me all the way back to the previous page!

Rich text editors make content maintenance a whole lot easier for most people and are familiar to just about anyone who’s used a word processor in the past couple of decades. It’s not always good to replicate desktop functionality, but it seems to make good sense here, at least for non-technical users.

Many people will immediately associate the UI style with MS Office, but funnily enough Office 12 makes a radical departure from the menus-and-toolbars paradigm. Are “Ajax Ribbons” the next big thing?

FCKEditor.jpeg

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Where is AJAX in FCKEditor?

It is Javascript, DHTML, but I don’t see any use of Asynchronous HTTP messaging.

I espect “Ajaxian” to be more clear in this subject.

Comment by Stefano — November 22, 2005

I Think ajaxian is making a fool out of itself with posts like this. It’s supposed to be about AJAX, but they just put ‘AJAX’ in front of every item they want to give some attention to. Come on guys, don’t hype stuff up like this. FCKeditor has as much to do with AJAX as some dude that claims he ‘ajaxed’ without xmlhttp by using docum,ent.write of tags.

Comment by SchizoDuckie — November 22, 2005

Totally agree, it looks awesome, but that’s not AJAX…

Comment by Allan R. — November 22, 2005

Looks pretty sweet. The only thing I found missing was an image map editor, sadly, that’s exactly what I’m looking for.

Comment by Travis Truman — November 22, 2005

I appreciate the facts (dots) this blog identifies–even if they are not absolutely and explicitly “Ajaxian”, because I am just as interested in the potential relationships (lines) that are also being explored. I wouldn’t be reading this blog if it weren’t publishing entries this way.

See: “The Mathematics of Persistence” http://www.thinkingapplied.com/persistence_folder/persistence.htm

Comment by Andrew Collins — November 22, 2005

2 Andrew: I agree with you. I think the big problem is the “Ajax” name in the post title, not the post itself.

FCKEditor is not Ajax and I would accept this “misidentification” by other people, but not ajaxian!

Comment by Stefano — November 22, 2005

Hi guys,

You are right in that XHR isn’t used here. We are always torn on what people want to see.

At its heart, Ajax is not just technology, but is a new way to deliver rich internet applications.

If we see something interesting in this area we think that some people would want to read about it.

In this case we probably should have left out the “Ajax” word in the post, and I have changed that.

Cheers,

Dion

Comment by Dion Almaer — November 22, 2005

Keep posting this stuff. I’m always interested in seeing these sorts of things…. and lets face it 1) if people are going to cling to refering to AJAX as what it stands for then you’d have to stop posting XHR apps that return JSON or plain text remember X = XML, and 2) Only a tiny bit of most of the Toolkits; Dojo, Mochikit, script.aculo.us etc are XHR. If people can’t get over that… well I cast the course of a thousand null pointers on them! :)

However…. WHAT”S UP WITH THE LACK OF SAFARI SUPPORT!!!!! I don’t know who to plead with anymore, Apple or the script writers. TinyMCE seems to be able to handle Safari, why nobody else? I’m sad :(.

Comment by Vance Dubberly — November 22, 2005

Besides that FCKEditor is not AJAX-enabled, it is fairly typical in its promise to be easier to use, but is yet horrible in actual use when it comes to clarity of the buttons (too many! unlabeled!), preview functionality and (X)HTML standards support. (Also see my more in-depth review of WYSIWYG editors at http://www.jeroencoumans.nl/journal/wysiwyg-text-editing-in-cms)

Comment by Jeroen Coumans — November 23, 2005

Well… FCKeditor could be used to enhance rich AJAX applications (as it provides a complete JavaScript API), so this would also be the right place to present it.
Not mentioned, just for curiosity, but FCKeditor uses AJAX for many of its features, like the styles toolbar command and the resources browser.

Comment by Piotr — November 24, 2005

Why don’t you use assholes give Dion a break. Just because it doesn’t use XMLHttpRequest doesn’t mean he can’t post it and that others aren’t interested.

Comment by Rick — November 24, 2005

To add to Jeroen’s comment: There are eight refs to XMLHttpRequest() in version 2.0 of FCKeditor.

Sure looks like AJAX to me…

Comment by jt — November 30, 2005

The file upload tool uses XML an javascript to do asyncronys requests to an application server.

Comment by Ron — June 29, 2006

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