A NEW BETA OF WINDOWS LIVE WRITER HAS BEEN RELEASED
Frank Arrigo (a lovely gentleman, if I may say so) notes that a new build of Windows Live Writer has been released. Up till now I have been using Community Server's inbuilt Control Panel to create my blog entries (either creating the text in Notepad or Word) but WLW is proving to be much easier to use.
I can quickly change font, font size, and font color. There is a spell checker. I can see exactly how the blog entry will look as I type by using the Web Layout view.
Windows Live Writer makes it easy to work with a table - for example I can drag to resize, add and remove columns or rows, and embed graphics.
But, although the table appears fine in Live Writer, as you can see here, it is screwy when published - this is how it's *meant* to look.
Is it looking screwed up for you as well?
| || || |
|Does the text wrap properly? Quick brown fix etc ||A photograph taken in Las Vegas || |
The insert map option is fun - I wonder who recognizes the buildings in this bird's eye view.
Unfortunately, the font sample pane (format font) is useless if, like me, you happen to use white as your font color - white characters on a white background are impossible to see and the preview screen is not smart enough to adjust it's background color under such circumstances. I have to change my font color to be able to preview different font types.
Emoticons are missing, but you can download a plug-in for that. The "Insert MSN, Yahoo and Custom Smiley" plug-in works immediately upon installation, but the Insert Spaces Emoticons Plugin requires a restart. If it were me, I'd just install the former - there is a far greater selection of emoticons available. Be warned though, the emoticon previews are a little slow to load.
Ok, so what else do we have here...
Block quotes; and
They're a bit weird .. why make heading 4 larger than heading 2 and 3?
I wonder if it will still be screwy when published... yep
But, they appear fine in IE7's RSS view:
I can save my draft posts locally or to my blog. Drafts appear in a list in a task pane to right of screen for easy access, as do recently posted articles.
I can also edit simply by clicking in the blog's entry in the "Recently Posted" list (but when I do this the entry loses any Categories that were previously set). Oh, and there's no obvious way to close the Categories window. You have to click elsewhere in the program and then the window disappears.
There is a paste option, and more importantly a "paste special" option for HTML and text data that can strip out unnecessary formatting.
I can also copy graphics to clipboard and paste directly into my blog entry without having to save the graphic to my picture gallery first. Unfortunately, they do not seem to size properly, and attempts to resize to original (an option that is available) does not seem to work, although resizing by *dragging* does work.
Edit: it turns out the graphics are automatically being changed to thumbnails - cool, but I wonder how to turn that off - sometimes I want my graphics to be displayed full size.
Graphics captured via "alt PrtSc"
Graphic captured via SnagIt.
In short, Windows Live Writer is maturing into a neat utility but being a beta has some irritating bugs as demonstrated in this entry.
Now, let's see if this thing publishes properly My apologies if thing go wrong