On Web based WYSIWYG Editors

Actually, I’m primarily looking at YOU WordPress and TinyMCE!

When creating sites, one of the big draws of using WordPress is that my clients can add/edit content on the site with a built in WYSIWYG editor called TinyMCE. As a result, they don’t need to worry about having to deal with HTML, or worse. The problem for me is that some of the content requires code not available with TinyMCE. What I do is switch from the WYSIWYG mode to the built in text editor and make my changes.What I have found is that TinyMCE strips out some of my code, effectively ruining the changes.

On several forums, users have experienced these problems and the solution was to ‘use one or the other‘ whereby you would edit your user profile and and disable the visual editor. This works well for us techies, except for the fact that:

  1. Some theme companies, such as Woo and Themeforest, provide additional functionality to the Visual editor that you can’t see if you use the Text editor.
  2. Themeforest provides a layout editor that requires the Visual editor to be enabled.
  3. Not many clients will put up with a text editor for adding/editing HTML content.

The closest I could get to the best of both worlds was to:

  1. Download TinyMCE Advanced.
  2. Configure TinyMCE Advanced to stop stripping out paragraph and break tags in the content.
  3. Always ensure I’m in the visual editor WYSIWYG mode before publishing/updating content.

Sometimes, I forget this and will invariably end up fighting with the WordPress editor. After a long bout today, I think I’ll remember this process a bit longer.

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