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Recommendations for lightweight HTML editor for Mac?
February 7, 2008 12:49 PM   Subscribe

Recommendations for lightweight HTML editor for Mac?

I currently have Dreamweaver installed on my Macbook because my company's website used to be managed through that and Contribute. Now we have a fancy CMS whose WYSIWYG text blocks don't handle copy and paste all that well. My workaround is to paste the text into Dreamweaver's "design" window, which does handle copy and paste well, and copy the HTML from the "code window."

Thing is...Dreamweaver is a memory hog, both in RAM and hard drive space. Would love to drop it for a simple editor that has just the functions I'm using. Has anyone used something that fits the bill and they'd recommend?

Freeware is preferred.
posted by sjuhawk31 to Computers & Internet (26 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
BBedit
posted by jamaro at 12:50 PM on February 7, 2008


Or TextWrangler, the freeware option brought to you by the same people who make BBedit.
posted by milarepa at 12:55 PM on February 7, 2008


Not sure if Textwrangler works the way I'm looking for...I need to copy from MSWord and past into a "design" type window that will also give me the relevant HTML. Am I using it wrong?
posted by sjuhawk31 at 1:02 PM on February 7, 2008


TextMate is good. Panic software's Coda is a very cool "One-Window Web Development" system that features a capable text editor plus dedicated css editor, FTP/SFTP utility and terminal program.
posted by timeistight at 1:03 PM on February 7, 2008


Sorry, I wasn't clear what you were trying to do and just threw it out there!
posted by milarepa at 1:04 PM on February 7, 2008


Oops, missed your last comment. I thought you were looking for a code editor.

I don't know much about WYSIWYG HTML editors aside from Dreamweaver.
posted by timeistight at 1:06 PM on February 7, 2008


I have a soft spot for smultron though lately I've not regretted the purchase of coda
posted by mce at 1:15 PM on February 7, 2008


It doesn't sound like a lightweight HTML editor is what you want. These tend to be things like TextWrangler or Notepad++, which are basically text editors with some built-in syntax highlighting. None of them do copy-and-paste WYSIWYG editing, and anything that does WYSIWYG editing is going to be very lightweight.

You might be able to get lighter than Dreamweaver, though. I haven't used it myself, but Nvu has been recommended here before.
posted by echo target at 1:19 PM on February 7, 2008


Coda
posted by rlef98 at 1:21 PM on February 7, 2008


Darn I knew the window was a little stale, I should have previewed.
I did think of Nvu but having just tried KompoZer (a sort of bug fix release) I see it doesn't take a stab at the formatting. At least not on OSX.
posted by mce at 1:24 PM on February 7, 2008


It's not free, but you could download and try RaipidWeaver

I stumbled across it before I found Coda, but never tried it. The name leads me to believe it's more of a Dw replacement with mixed WYSIWYG/HTML abilities.
posted by JulianDay at 1:25 PM on February 7, 2008


Nvu is great for basic web authoring. Although, one thing I worry about is you might be doing this the...not necessarily wrong, but inefficient...way.

See, your fancy new CMS controls your website's CSS (style sheet). Every piece of formatting your website uses should be defined in the CSS. Then, for any formatting you have to do, all you need to do is plop in the class and you're good to go (the WYSIWYG editor in your CMS is taking care of this automatically). But, by formatting in your other editor, you're using straight HTML code to format, which is a waste of code, and not using your CMS to its full potential.

I'm not sure what CMS you're using, but I recommend doing some CSS wrangling and doing all your formatting within the auspices of you CMS: copy your content to something like notepad, then copy it again from notepad to your CMS (clears the formatting tags so you start off without any troublesome tags...our CMS hates the {span} tag).
posted by General Malaise at 1:29 PM on February 7, 2008


Taco
posted by gyusan at 1:36 PM on February 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Malaise, I'd love to do it your way, but our CSS is so messed up it's not funny. The default text size for ul tags, for instance, is tiny. I don't have control over it, so I work around it when I can by pasting the text from Word into Dreamweaver, which keeps the style formatting but drops all the {span} nonsense and then copying the HTML code that Dreamweaver creates into the CMS's editor. I've got it down to a pretty decent science but want to speed up the process if possible.

If I could create all the content myself in the CMS, I would (and I do for most pages) but I run the news site and our writers send me word files of their stories.

Sigh.
posted by sjuhawk31 at 1:37 PM on February 7, 2008


You might be looking for something like Nvu.
posted by al_fresco at 1:49 PM on February 7, 2008


Oops, forgot to refresh.
posted by al_fresco at 1:49 PM on February 7, 2008


I work around it when I can by pasting the text from Word into Dreamweaver, which keeps the style formatting but drops all the {span} nonsense and then copying the HTML code that Dreamweaver creates into the CMS's editor.

If you are just trying to retain Word formatting then try this, an online tool but really handy and saves you from opening Dreamweaver.
posted by twistedonion at 1:58 PM on February 7, 2008


As an aside though (because I am a developer for a CMS), the preferable approach would be to use the CMS as intended - if the default size is too small get the designer/developers to increase it.

Always best to have a consistent style throughout the site and formatting in word or Dreamweaver without sticking to the styles defined in the css is just messy and can end up making a site look very unproffessional.
posted by twistedonion at 2:02 PM on February 7, 2008


I need to copy from MSWord...

Be very careful. Word introduces a lot of non-standard characters and word spacings. I have a client who sends me all her text changes as Word docs. I copy/paste into GoLive but then have to go in and edit for things like quotes and apostrophes. They will drop-out as blanks in the html. Likewise, I have to edit the sentence breaks. Quite often, Word inserts two or three spaces between sentences.
posted by Thorzdad at 2:16 PM on February 7, 2008


vi

:wq!
posted by br4k3r at 2:18 PM on February 7, 2008


Coda is awesome and well worth whatever they charge for it.
posted by bradbane at 2:22 PM on February 7, 2008


A few of these solutions work really well...thanks, all.

twisteddomain, yours is the best suggestion (both of them), and one day, I'll get our IT people to fix the CSS. For now, though, plain-as-it-gets converting is great, and wordcleaner does it quite well.
posted by sjuhawk31 at 2:40 PM on February 7, 2008


Nvu or Seamonkey for lightweight clients.
posted by Kioki-Silver at 2:54 PM on February 7, 2008


Nthing Taco.
posted by PatoPata at 3:18 PM on February 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


MS Word allows you to save as 'web page, filtered' that will automatically strip out Office specific tags. Alternately, try saving the document as plain text to strip codes out.
posted by Kioki-Silver at 4:09 PM on February 7, 2008


'web page, filtered' doesn't get rid of all office-specific code. HTML Tidy can adapt Word-created HTML spam into actual standard-compliant code, more or less. I use TidyUI on Windows; while I haven't tried it, Balthisar Tidy appears to be the Mac adaptation.
posted by FlyingMonkey at 10:40 AM on February 25, 2008


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