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In Search of a Javascritpt WYSIWYG HTML Editor that Doesn\’t Suck

Posted: March 19th, 2005 | Author: | Filed under: PHP, Projects | 8 Comments »

The title says it all. I’m looking for a Javascript-based What-You-See-is-What-You-Get HTML editor that doesn’t suck. I fell in love with HTMLArea when I bought my copy of Radio back in 2001. I’ve since used HTMLArea 2 which is pretty decent but is IE only. Until recently I had been tracking the HTMLArea 3 pre-releases which worked in both IE and Mozilla and were beginning to deal with things like copy/paste content from newer versions of Microsoft Office products that embed all that nasty XMLish markup. The other day I went to htmlarea.com to see if there was a new beta release only to find that the lead contributor had mothballed the project:

htmlarea 2 and 3 have been discontinued. They were free wysiwyg editors that were distributed on this site. Visit the directory to find similar products.

What a bummer. The source is still in CVS, and I’m hoping that a leet Javascripter will take over the project, because HTMLArea 3 seemed pretty darn stable and quite near release. I’ve looked quickly at a bunch of possible replacements, but each one seems to have a showstopper. RTE is quite good for when you need a small, simple, compact editor, but it has its quirks. For instance, it’s an editable iframe instead of a layer over textarea, so there are some limits to the script-fu you can do with it. Don’t get the post title wrong, RTE does not suck at all, but it has its limitations.

And so I ask you, dear reader, what the heck are you using these days for something like this? While I take the time to look closer at the lists of editors that I’ve glossed over before, I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to drop me a line (matt at ooiio dot com) or take a look at my JavascriptWyswiygHtmlEditors page and add your two cents. Please help, I’m at my wits end!

8 Comments on “In Search of a Javascritpt WYSIWYG HTML Editor that Doesn\’t Suck”

  1. 1 rick said at 7:18 pm on March 19th, 2005:

    I added one to the wiki: HtmlArea.

  2. 2 Leonya said at 8:11 am on March 20th, 2005:

    Try FCKEditor.

  3. 3 Ian Bicking said at 2:18 am on April 10th, 2005:

    There’s a big discussion about it here:


    There is a project taking the htmlArea code and enhancing it (in a public repository and with normal open source methodologies, which the htmlArea authors never really tried to do). They also suggest lots of other alternatives. TinyMCE looked interesting, FCKEditor was nice but seemed too bound to server-side components. Kupu is a little weird and different from the others, but seems interesting as well — and is just about the only one with a mature group of open source developers.

  4. 4 Sean said at 9:14 am on August 19th, 2006:

    fckeditor is the GO!

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