Flash-based Text Editor

Sometimes I am so bad at spotting news. :-) I featured Stuart Schoneveld’s web site illogicz.com not long ago, and found some of his cool projects there. Amongs them, his Flash Rich Text Editor

But it took Jon Udell, then Dave Winer, then John Dowdell and finally Chris MacGregor to point out how cool it was before I got that its actually news. (Yeah, I am slow).

There are some interesting links to add to this story however. Tim Appnel is adding some thoughs and questions – that I hope Stuart will be able to answer.

This search has lead me to consider the possibility of using Flash. Flash 4 added forms support. Flash 5 added XML support. With MX, the latest version of Flash, Macromedia has added interface components and more robust scripting. With these new features and its widespread deployment across multiple OSes and browsers, I theorized that a replacement component may be possible. Just I recently came across Stuart Schoneveld’s promising Rich Text Editor that seems to validate my theory. There is no source or documentation to know to what extent the control could be pushed but I find this encouraging based on my cursory knowledge of Flash

Jon Udell adds to it and John Dowdell answers. Great to see these conversations happening. I hope Stuart will have time to give his 2 cents too.

The ability to use Flash MX as the interface towards CMS systems and weblogs is really interesting. And will in my mind solve a lot of the issues other such solutions have today. The IE ActiveX control is VERY platform dependent, and for that reason I (and many more with me) have stayed far away from using that as a solution, even though it adds a lot of functionallity on the platform that is supported.

I have been involved in a project that Jensa at Flashmagazine has been working on, a very usable Flash based publishing system that is already being used by a number of clients, and will be used for version 2.0 of Flashmagazine.com (due this fall).

I raved to him about the cool Flash MX based UIs for text and graphics when I got back from FlashForward in San Francisco. At FlashForward Branden and Sam showcased a very cool Flash application with drawing, and a text tool. And with a GUI totally like a normal windows application.

So when I saw Stuart’s implementation that looked a lot like the ActiveX editor I have seen/used for Internet Explorer (Windows), I immediately sent Jensa an e-mail telling him about it. Something like it will really take that publishing system to the next level.

It never dawned on me that it could be used as plug-in editor to any weblog tool. It should be possible to plug it in as an editor for tools like Radio, MovableType and a whole of others. As well as normal HTML/server based CMS-systems.

I hope Stuart releases some more information about his editor, and keeps working on it. I know I am amongst the people that would pay for a component such as this.