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August 13, 2006

Windows Live Writer - Blog Publishing Tool


Windows Live Writer is a new tool from Microsoft that allows you to publish to your blog using a desktop client. While the software is integrated with Windows Live Spaces, you can also use it with Blogger, LiveJournal, TypePad, WordPress.

What's nice about Windows Live Writer is that it reads your blog's template and it lets you preview your content while creating it. It's like seeing your blog post growing.

The rich-text editor is not impressing, as it contains the usual elements and doesn't produce clean code (you'll notice many unneeded tags). When you insert pictures, you've got more options: you can resize the picture, add a nice shadow, adjust brightness and even use some simple effects like sepia. Unfortunately, Blogger doesn't allow you to publish images for the hosted blogs.

Windows Live Writer also lets you insert maps using Windows Live Local and the maps can be customized to show the aerial view or bird's eye detail.

When you select the preview mode, you'll see how your blog would look if you published the post, so it takes the idea of preview one step further.

Windows Live Writer is available to download here [4.74 MB, Windows] and it's still beta. The simple interface and the innovative additions make this tool a good replacement for the standard blogging interfaces and it's a good alternative to Performancing for Firefox, Qumana, but it's still far from a commercial application like ecto.

7 comments:

  1. Here are my observations:

    * This is actually kinda a big deal. Not because the tool is so innovative, it does a few clever things and it is very well executed, but it is a year or so late. Still the Live Writer team derserves some applause cause it is very nicely done.
    * The reason this is a big deal is because Microsoft actually shiped a simple stand alone app. Somehow theser guys managed to ship without this product forced into integrating with Internet Explorer, Works, Word, etc., there is no big unifying MS strategy here. It even supports non-MS products like Blogger (yeah - owned by Google). This means, that as a shareholder, I may have some sliver of hope that my MS shares might actually increase in value.

    http://alexcastro.typepad.com/castros_blog/2006/08/windows_live_wr.html

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  2. The Windows Live Writer folks did a nice job. Also check out RocketPost, www.anconia.com/rocketpost. It's far more advanced than Writer, and there's a free version. (I designed it.)

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  3. Did this mean that Writely will be launched soon?

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  4. * The reason this is a big deal is because Microsoft actually shiped a simple stand alone app. Somehow theser guys managed to ship without this product forced into integrating with Internet Explorer, Works, Word, etc., there is no big unifying MS strategy here. It even supports non-MS products like Blogger (yeah - owned by Google). This means, that as a shareholder, I may have some sliver of hope that my MS shares might actually increase in value.

    But yet it still wreaks of FrontPage...

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  5. how can this wreak of FrontPage when completely separate company wrote it?! Onfolio. Onfolio was only acquired in Feb 2006.

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  6. Today morning I have installed windows live writer and successfully posted an entry to my wordpress blog.

    It gives an error message that the underlying connection has was closed.

    what to do? I have give correct authentication by proxy. Im using web-based wordpress not the installed version :(

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  7. Check the comments from this post. One of them says:

    Ok got the whole "error in connection" message everyone's been compaining about.

    I figured out that it happens when I directly paste pictures onto the live writer (copy-paste).

    When I upload the pics to my space and insert them as weblinks then I dont get the error. However, now, I can't play around with the picture- as in insert effects and all.

    ReplyDelete