Like everyone else, website authors are always on the lookout for tools to make the way they do their jobs simpler and more efficient. With an abundance of products flooding the market claiming to make web-authoring easier, it becomes increasingly difficult to choose the right program to fit a company’s needs. One approach is to build on an already familiar web-authoring program instead of requiring users to adapt to an entirely different tool. One company taking this approach is Ephox, a provider of solutions for web content authoring. On Jan. 18, at the IBM Lotusphere conference, Ephox announced a new integration of its EditLive! solution for IBM Quickr for J2EE and Domino users.
Founded in 1999 in Brisbane, Australia, Ephox engages web content authoring professionals by adjusting its product to fit with multiple programs such as EditLive! for IBM WCM, EditLive! for RedDot, and EditLive! for Vignette Content Management. As Michael Fromin, director of products for Ephox, explains, the initial premise of Ephox arose out of simply observing the ways companies create content. "As more and more things move to the web, the problem people are running into is that the task of making content on the web is much different than making documents on a computer," explains Fromin. Ephox aimed to make the transition from desktop authoring to web authoring easier on companies by providing an editing program with familiar Microsoft Word-like tools.
This switch in focus from desktop to web authoring has changed the way companies approach content sharing. Prior to the development of more familiar authoring tools, sharing was limited to a "small number of people creating content for masses to consume," says Fromin. With EditLive!, "Everybody is a content creator. Instead of a few creating content for many, it becomes many creating content for many. Now all the members of the team are effectively content contributors." With EditLive! for Quickr, everyone in a company can stake a claim in the web content authoring process.
Its latest venture enhances IBM’s Lotus Quickr, and it allows authors and editors to work with content without heavy complication. By itself, IBM Quickr is collaboration software that helps companies share content, collaborate, and work online with teams. With IBM Quickr, a company can organize and share content, extend enterprise content management investments, create online places for projects or teams, and create a personal content library online. EditLive! for Quickr builds on these features by adding its own flavor of editing tools.
The EditLive! download installation combats other programs that use a typical manual development effort. This should free up time, allowing authors and editors to get started immediately rather than struggling to set up the program themselves. Each feature of EditLive! was designed with familiar editing tools in mind since most computer users have already grown accustomed to using programs such as Microsoft Word. Some of the features provided by EditLive! for Quickr are the ability to copy and paste a clean document from Word into EditLive!, a spell-check-as-you-type tool, Word-like track changes, robust table and list editing, and WYSIWYG styles support.
Beyond these features, EditLive! for Quickr also allows companies to create blogs, wiki entries, and team spaces. It enables content authors and editors to link to images and other documents within the Quickr repository, and there is an image cropping capability for those who wish to add images to their text. With EditLive! for Quickr, companies have a program that can not only be used to share content within their boundaries but can also publish content to public websites.
Simplifying the process of content web authoring gives everyone in a company equal chance to be a part of the game. IT specialists no longer have to take on the responsibility of producing web content on their own. As Fromin explains, "If you are trying to complete a task and you spend more time worried about the tool and figuring out the tool than [you spend] on the task, the focus is not right."