Kompozer is easy and free

Summary:A reader of Monday's post, How do I make a website, sent me an email suggesting that I look at Kompozer instead of NVU (a free, if limited WYSIWYG editor I mentioned in that post). Since I had a choice between finishing my numerical analysis homework and trying out Kompozer, I obviously opted for the latter.

A reader of Monday's post, How do I make a website, sent me an email suggesting that I look at Kompozer instead of NVU (a free, if limited WYSIWYG editor I mentioned in that post). Since I had a choice between finishing my numerical analysis homework and trying out Kompozer, I obviously opted for the latter.

Billed on its Sourceforge page as the Unofficial Bugfix Release for NVU, Kompozer is a quick download and is available for Windows, most Linux platforms, and OSX. Adept had it installed on my Kubuntu laptop from a repository in about 30 seconds. There are lots of tools for teaching students to create web pages, some expensive and proprietary, some cheap and open source. The range from great HTML editors like Quanta to utterly basic HTML creation tools like Mozilla's Composer.

However, I always found NVU to be a nice way to ease non-technical kids and staff into creating HTML. The WYSIWYG interface is fairly clean, as is the HTML it generates. The HTML is also easy to view and manipulate, giving students ready access to the code they create, as well as quick previews of code they write or change. Kompozer takes NVU a few steps further, adding easy support for CSS and a simple website manager for organizing entire sites.

This isn't meant to replace professional tools like Dreamweaver or more powerful free tools like Screem, but it's so easy that students get the instant gratification they like while still learning quite a bit about HTML and web development. Since Kompozer supports PHP and Javascript as well, students can explore more advanced concepts without moving into tools with a lot of overhead.

What tools do you recommend?

Topics: CXO

About

Christopher Dawson grew up in Seattle, back in the days of pre-antitrust Microsoft, coffeeshops owned by something other than Starbucks, and really loud, inarticulate music. He escaped to the right coast in the early 90's and received a degree in Information Systems from Johns Hopkins University. While there, he began a career in health a... Full Bio

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