Diatribe of Windows Live Writer 2011

Windows Live Writer is one of my favorite programs. I use it to blog and compose, but it’s also a point of ongoing friction. It has great potential, but lacks the soul of enthusiastic developers.
I don’t mean to be so harsh on it. It’s really nothing personal about the comment, but open source vs. a closed source shop; there’s a fairly large difference there. The mentality is completely different on how and where a program goes when it’s released in the wild.

 


I’m sure that Windows Live Writer was once a dream, a passion, to produce the best offline blogging tool ever; surely it was, but Microsoft purchased them and ripped the soul right of them. And I’m completely aware I’m bashing the program I’m using, but it seems to me that I’d like more from it than Microsoft and the Windows Live Writer developers want to offer.


I’m obviously an ungrateful person.

Windows Live Writer by itself is blah. I equate Windows Live Writer to the blogging version of Firefox for browsers.
It’s not the application that’s great; it’s the plug-ins that really turn up the appeal.
 
But to stir the pot, the bigger issue is the lack of certain functions, the lack of plug-ins. I know of one guy right now that’s really a junky when it comes to plug-ins and he seems to really like doing them, but more to the point, for things he does, he uses and not a coder of public demand- this is what Microsoft should be doing. Listening to the Windows Live Writer users.
Microsoft has an user forum, but it’s a joke right now. And the thing that bothers me is the lack of a software tracking system.
 
Everyone offers a version history; everyone but Microsoft.
 
The latest version of Windows Live Writer came out, the Wave 4 beta, and no one had a freaking clue what was in it. It was the biggest hunt and click game ever. Everyone is reporting on everything they find and it’s almost like Easter; everyone’s hunting for feature eggs. But 18+ months go by and all we’re really given is a new GUI. [sigh] But they’ve already got me. I’m already hooked on using Windows Live Writer- with those damn plug-ins.
 
I keep looking though...
 
I’ve tried observing other offline blogging tools like Zoundry Raven. Zoundry Raven has a lot of good features, if it had theme preview [that worked], it’d be awesome. It’s got a lot of features, and it’s really focuses at people who blog, who want to really have some offline freedom.
 
Windows Live Writer completely fails in the freedom area. Windows Live Writer isn’t portable; it’s not even something that Microsoft Windows Live Writer development has in their goals.
 
Where Zoundry Raven takes flight is the research tools it offers. Ability to download all your posts for offline research and reference. Access to all links and information. Ease of access to old posts; specifically caching post history.
 
I know...
 
I know Windows Live Writer development is moving forward, but I can’t help but hear their chatter as they fumble with the Windows Live Writer code ‘they don’t need this, they don’t need that...’ – it’s disturbing.
If they had a listing of what people/users are asking for, maybe there’d be a few less questions/requests and maybe people could vote on what they thought was important.
 
Oh, and if you haven’t noticed I’m trying out the new Zemanta for Windows Live Writer.It has a few things I have been searching for like the article suggestions, the link detection,  and the keywords suggestions. I realize that Zemanta isn’t exactly what I’d like, but it’s better than what Windows Live Writer offers natively in this area- nothing.
 
And while I’m on the subject of expectations, Windows Live Writer recently changed the title startup to include 2011; this precludes me to think that Windows Live Writer official release won’t be until December.
 
Always a pleasure...
Until next time,
LEHenryJr
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