WebAssist Introduces iRite WYSIWYG Text Editor

Posted on February 5, 2008
Filed Under Dreamweaver Design, Product Reviews, Website Design | Leave a Comment

iRite is WebAssist’s newest Dreamweaver extension and it allows you to easily insert a WYSIWYG text editor into your Dreamweaver web pages.  If you’ve ever tried to incorporate a text editor such as TinyMCE or FCKeditor into your website, you’ll appreciate this easy-to-implement extension from WebAssist.

Advanced Text Editing as Easy as Word

iRite allows your site visitors to enter content into any text field or text area with the ease of using a word processor.  The editor offers customizable icons for common tasks such as bulleted or numbered lists, bold and italics, hyperlinks, image upload and insertion, color palettes, text alignment and much more.  iRite is based on the popular open source FCKeditor, which is one of the most popular WYSIWYG text editors available.  iRite outputs HTML code (actually XHTML 1.0) without the user having to know any HTML coding.  It’s as simple as typing in Word, clicking a button, and their formatted text is inserted into the page.

Mac or PC: ASP, CF or PHP

WebAssist’s iRite is compatible with Abode Dreamweaver 8 and CS3 on Mac and PC.  Supported server languages include ASP, ColdFusion and PHP.  You can use iRite without restriction on your sites, for one low price.  iRite also gives you the ability to attach external CSS stylesheets, so you can format text using custom CSS styles.

Build your own CMS

The real power of iRite is the ability to incorporate the extension into a custom CMS for client websites.  You can allow the user to edit and entire web page, or just specified content sections if you want to keep the page structure intact.  The following is an example of how you can construct an easy-to-use editable website for a client.

How to Create a Simple Dreamweaver CMS with iRite

In Dreamweaver, set up a PHP site with a connection to your server database.  Your database can be as simple as having one table with two fields: an ID field and a content field.  For each page you wish to include the dynamic editable content, simple filter the recorset to the ID of the applicable page.  For example, if the content for the home page is ID=1, then set your recorset up to filter by that specific ID.  Simply insert the dynamic content field into the content section of your page, and that’s it.  Repeat that same step for each page in the site with the appropriate ID number in your database table.  For simple site-wide changes, either use a Dreamweaver template or use PHP includes for each section of your page (header, navigation, footer, etc).  This allows you to easily make changes without having to edit each individual page.

Now you need to set up the page that allows the user to edit their website content.  An easy way to allow users to edit their sites is to just place a small graphic element at the bottom of the site that links directly to the edit page.  You will need to set up a secure login and password to prevent unauthorized access, but for now, I’m just going to stay with the task at hand.

When the user clicks into the edit page, the page consists of an Update Record behavior with a simple text area with the iRite extension.  When the page is opened, the content will be displayed within the iRite editor, and will allow for updating.  The user makes their changes, clicks the submit button, and the page content is updated in the database and the changes are immediately visible.

For SEO purposes, the website links will read something like: www.yourwebsite.com/index.php?id=1 so you’ll want to modify your .htaccess file to use mod_rewrite to achieve friendly url’s and to redirect the dynamic homepage url to www.yourwebsite.com.  When someone types in www.yourwebsite.com, your server will look for index.html, index.htm, index.php, default.html, etc., so you need to set the default page to redirect to index.php?id=1.

That’s how easy iRite makes it to update website content.  As a website designer, I very frequently get requests for clients to have the ability to edit their own sites.  iRite makes this process simple and prevents having to do a custom TinyMCE or FCKeditor installation with each new site.

You can read more about the iRite WYSIWYG editor and see if it fits what you are trying to accomplish.  WebAssist also bundles iRite  in their Super Suite bundle with saves quite a bit over buying each extension individually.

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