Since I downloaded the Windows Live Writer beta, I
have been in almost complete disgust with the lack of attention it received in the 18+ month vacation from development.
While I think Windows Live Writer is the best offline blogging application on the Internet, it seems to be missing it’s market; it’s missing that die hard blogger spirit that sparked the development of the application in the first place.
It’s almost like the people who write Windows Live Writer don’t understand what they’re doing, or don’t care, or don’t understand the drive, inspiration and needs of the bloggers anymore…
I want to take the time to introduce you to another blogging application called Zoundry Raven; I just found it and loaded it to play around with it…
I think Raven would have been the definitive application for offline blogging if it had the type of financial backing that Microsoft gave Windows Live Writer, but it doesn’t, and the the Raven project is suffering right now- seemingly a slow death.
But that’s not important. What’s important about this application is what’s in it right now, considering it’s age/maturity [almost 3years old] and what Windows Live Writer is offering it’s users.
Because Raven is an open source project, it can be more open to the needs of the bloggers, listen to them, embracing other services [websites] and then attempt to offer a great application; unlike what Microsoft is doing… Focusing energy on a project for the purpose of driving other products and services.
Yes, Windows Live Writer has a gallery to visit to enhance the functionality, but honestly, it seems like there’s only a few people that are even interested in writing anything [plug-ins] for Windows Live Writer.
But Raven had a great start on Windows Live Writer…
First, lets take a observe at the editor…
Windows Live Writer just added the strike through function Raven has had that for years. There’s also the indent option, Windows Live Writer still doesn’t have that…
When you’re composing your posts in Raven it’s very easy to cross post articles to multiple blogging services; Windows live writer doesn’t do this in a native format. In order for Windows live writer to crosspost information to multiple blogging services you have to utilize a plug-in.
It’s About The Information…
One thing I really like about Raven, that I just found, is the account navigator…
People who use Windows Live Writer will notice something right away about this panel; something that they’re not used to seeing.
Raven offers this information to the author, for easy access.
I can see total number of posts, links, images and tags.. And it download’s all my posts and all my images from my website and stores it locally for me to be able to search and reference.
For almost a year now I’ve been looking/requesting a plug-in that would allow me to try find similar posts to the one I’m writing. The purpose of having something like that would be too have links or supporting articles to reinforce your message.
With Windows live writer you can link to a previous post but you can only filter based upon a title of the post; with Raven, you can search on the title of the post, any of the links that have been recorded in any one of the posts, any one of the images that you’ve used to create articles and find supporting information based upon any one of the tags have ever been assigned to any one of the posts that you created; it’s very flexible- and very nice- very refreshing.
I don’t know if you caught that last part about being able to reuse images from any of the previous posts. This is something that’s been requested of Windows live writer for quite some time in the request seems to continue to fall upon deaf ears.
While I’m not using Raven to compose my blog posts, I’m using Raven as a research tool. I’m using another application as a substitution for shortcoming to another application that supposed to be more well-rounded.
I’m able to use Raven to browse all of my previous images, find the image I want to use and then easily copy the shortcut for the image and paste it into my new post.
And I don’t know what the problem is with Windows live writer, but it consistently goes into a ‘not responding’ type situation every time I go to post a new article; the application completely locks up and gives the illusion that it’s crashed- it’s not until you waited 30-45 seconds after the post has been sent to your blog that the application starts responding again.
Now, I don’t know what Windows live writer is doing, but I can tell you that Raven can push a blog post to your service, be done and composing a new post by the time Windows live writer finishes thinking about what it’s doing.
So while Windows live writer is a well-financed and backed application from Microsoft, this open-source project is, and was, a very good competitor to Windows live writer. And the Windows live writer team should take notice to want could be provided to the users, to assist them with their blog.
Until next time,