A Digitally Pleasing Day: (warning, if you dislike digital blather, hop on out now) I decided to take the day at home to play Dr. Dad and take care of my family and work from the house. As the sun sets I am light headed and think that I have whatever it is.
But, it was a pretty cool day digitally. I loaded some new software on my Mary’s laptop, burned a DVD for the family, a CD for
One of the cool things was to evaluate a couple of web authoring programs that I hadn’t seen before. One was a little disappointing, Seamonkey from the good folks at Mozilla. It really is very little different from Netscrape Composer, and now Mozilla Composer. The only advantage that I was able to determine was publish button on the tool bar instead of it being a menu item. But then I got my hands on a neat little app called Nvu from the open source people at Linspire. Pretty cool program. It apparently is from the same engine as Composer except that it looks really sharp.
So then I started ruminating on why there is no longer a good free MS web authoring tool. They used to make FrontPage Express available, and you can still find it on the web, but it is old, they never really did much to support it. But that’s cool, Microsoft has a business model that includes making a profit, and I am all about making a profit where you can. So they put their energy back into the FrontPage 2003 model. Then I tugged on the whiskers on my chin (remember, spent the day home, no shaving!). Shouldn’t Microsoft be doing something to update their flagship authoring tool? So I started clicking away and found that Microsoft is about to make a significant launch of some new products that I think will really make a lot of people stand up and take notice. They have put together a suite of products called Microsoft Expressions and it is fantastic from the first look. In fact, I am downloading a beta of their web authoring piece and can’t wait to take it for a spin. Afraid that I will fall in love with it right when it expires.
They also have some other components that I can’t wait to try. Expressions Graphic Designer looks to bundle a PhotoShop like product with a vector based (Illustrator) product. The folks at MS would cringe at my simple definition, but that is what I made of it. Then there is Expressions Interactive Designer. Neat program, just not sure what it is supposed to do. Have to download that as well. And then of course is Expressions Web Designer which has some incredible features, far surpassing anything that it currently out there. I am particularly looking forward to playing with their CSS templates and RSS generation stuff. 88 megs down, only about 30 more megs to go until I can play!