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Will the demise of Muse change anything?

LEGEND ,
Apr 01, 2018

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NO I AM NOT TALKING ABOUT DREAMWEAVER.

If a company as big as Adobe cannot make a visual web design tool work in the long term, then what chance do all the replacment options that people are talking about as replacments for Muse, have for the longer term.

Those who remember back to those dark days of software programming, will also probably remember all those programs that also attempted to make software programming easy. They also used a visual system with pre-written coding elements, (including drag and drop) and required very little actual code to be written by the user, with users saying that it should not be necessary to actually learn how to code.

Muse and its replacements are being sold as the equivalent solutions in evolution for the web, as dtp programs and laser printers were to typesetting and screen printing. The problem I see with that comparison, is that the workflow and requirerments of dtp when it came had already been established over hundreds of years, and were not a still evolving process.

Html, css , javascript and everything else to do with the web, everything from code to social networks, data to user expectations of using that data, are all still evolving, and are not established standards. We do not even know how anything on the web will be accessed, let alone presented to the user.

So I am asking if programs like Muse, and the demise of Muse, could even be a good thing. Allowing the restrictions set by designers on web pages to finally be abandoned, and the 'this is how we lay out a printed page, so the web must layout a page the same' to finally be left behind.

Complexed layouts, white space, colours and none static features, (used correctly) are almost free on the web, so will we now start to use them, will we want software to support us in there use, will we finally leave hundred year old ideas of how a page should look and feel behind. Or have the designers in their failure to understand the web, their unwillingness to code, even in the failure and restrictions of the tools they use to replace code won anyway?

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Will the demise of Muse change anything?

LEGEND ,
Apr 01, 2018

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NO I AM NOT TALKING ABOUT DREAMWEAVER.

If a company as big as Adobe cannot make a visual web design tool work in the long term, then what chance do all the replacment options that people are talking about as replacments for Muse, have for the longer term.

Those who remember back to those dark days of software programming, will also probably remember all those programs that also attempted to make software programming easy. They also used a visual system with pre-written coding elements, (including drag and drop) and required very little actual code to be written by the user, with users saying that it should not be necessary to actually learn how to code.

Muse and its replacements are being sold as the equivalent solutions in evolution for the web, as dtp programs and laser printers were to typesetting and screen printing. The problem I see with that comparison, is that the workflow and requirerments of dtp when it came had already been established over hundreds of years, and were not a still evolving process.

Html, css , javascript and everything else to do with the web, everything from code to social networks, data to user expectations of using that data, are all still evolving, and are not established standards. We do not even know how anything on the web will be accessed, let alone presented to the user.

So I am asking if programs like Muse, and the demise of Muse, could even be a good thing. Allowing the restrictions set by designers on web pages to finally be abandoned, and the 'this is how we lay out a printed page, so the web must layout a page the same' to finally be left behind.

Complexed layouts, white space, colours and none static features, (used correctly) are almost free on the web, so will we now start to use them, will we want software to support us in there use, will we finally leave hundred year old ideas of how a page should look and feel behind. Or have the designers in their failure to understand the web, their unwillingness to code, even in the failure and restrictions of the tools they use to replace code won anyway?

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Apr 01, 2018 1
LEGEND ,
Apr 01, 2018

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I absolutely agree with your analogy of the dtp workflow compared to the web workflow. I have first hand experience of both. Dtp in many respects has already  reached its pinnacle, evolving very little in decades. Its a perfect environment for a box to be drawn, dragged around the screen, positioned and content added.

There is no consideration to be taken for what will happen if a user clicks this bit of text or that image, you have no necessity for slideshows, menu systems, modals, connections to a database, animation, etc - you dont even have to consider if the page is readable if it 'shrinks in the rain'.

Dtp is everything that a web workflow is most certainly not and as l still am involved in dtp lm going to stick my neck out again and say l now consider it to be a low skilled occupation compared to web development.

I said in a recent post web development is not the domain of a drag and drop environment because it has limited options and web software developers struggle to keep up with what is an increasingly complex and quick changing sector.

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Apr 01, 2018 0
LEGEND ,
Apr 01, 2018

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I know it's not nice to say, but the demise of Muse, and sites created by it, also held the development and incorporation of web specs back, so maybe a good thing for the web in the end, even if it was not for those who used it.

Browsers when they look at what is being used on the web, look at what features are being used across the web development spectrum in all browsers by sites. The lack of any feature(s) use by sites stagnates its incorporation into other browsers, after all if something is not being used they think it is not required.

It may be wishfull thinking, but if the demise of Muse and programs like it in future, proves the folly of using programs and one size fits all solutions, then maybe developers and browsers will start to use/incorporate features faster. Even the small developer could then use features that are simply not possible by those using the Muse type of programs and solutions, and offer clients and users a better user experiance.

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Apr 01, 2018 1
LEGEND ,
Apr 01, 2018

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I think you'll always have software companies preying on the unskilled, promising the moon and making a quick buck before they shut up shop.

Look at how many web editors, from small independent developers, are still being offered for sale with the old web-kit browser installed that doesnt even support flex without the prefixes. Green horns are still parting with their money and will continue to do so in future.

What is happening today and has been hapening over the past few years is disturbing to me but at least l am at a point where l could turn my back on it tomorrow. We, l have no doubt are just lone voices in the wilderness.

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Apr 01, 2018 0
LEGEND ,
Apr 01, 2018

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Strangely enough I am not interested in web editors and what they support anymore. I now have a prototype css autoprefixer working in CS6, and can update code hints by an extension.

What I am thinking more of is browser support for various features, as that to me is the biggest bug bearer in web development. Yes I can write a pollfill but I don't want to, and should not have to. I also wonder about how little Muse users must have been charging for a simple site, as one post mentioned £250 to £500 being the price range they charged, and that they could not match that price if they had to code by hand, (race to the bottom for cost?).

The use of social media would I think be a better option for clients paying and wanting so little from a site. As I cannot imagine such a site being profitable for the designers time, unless it is very basic and they are building it in hours and not days.

Muse to me offered nothing in the way of modern features, and I wonder how many developers, (and programs such as Dw) only offered simple features because they think the users of the programs were trying to match that type of price range, instead of offering features that Muse simply was not capable of doing, (talking about features in the final site, not Dw).

I'm not saying that web developers in the lower end of the market should or must include anything that Muse + plug-ins did not offer, just that trying to match diy site builders or Muse types of sites is I think a 'going bust' stratergy.

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Apr 01, 2018 1
LEGEND ,
Apr 01, 2018

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Well automation is and always will be part of the problem in any field for professionals trying to compete on price with amatuers, its not possible. I dont kmow what kinds of websites are being produced for  500 quid or less but show me one produced in the UK and lll show you a joke. In other parts of the world 500 quid is a lot of money so its quite possible - web develoment prices are driven down partly from development being very accessable, worldwide.

Going it alone these days can be very tough and financially fruitless unless you have some good contacts in the business and a reputation for delivering.

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Apr 01, 2018 0
LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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The production of the cheap web sites was from a poster in the U/K.

I'm just wondering if we can compare the loss of Muse to the .com crash in some respects?

Back then people charged astronomical fees for building web sites that today would not only be laughed at, but never ever came close to any of the promises made by the developers. They were almost without exception html table based, security of user data was a joke, and if one remembers many had the, 'best viewed in browser xxx' notice.

Just as the .com crash helped to signal the end of html table based layouts, hopefully the demise of Muse will help to signal the end of the  IE8 and below era, Muse never really managed to produce rwd sites.

The one thing no one has talked about in all the Muse discussions, are the clients of those using it. Will those clients be happy to continue with Muse users, especially those who hosted the sites on BC servers without a registered www address. Any move of those sites will mean the site being seen by search engines as a new site, with no relationship to the old BC hosted site, (no indication of a redirect being allowed by Adobe's BC server).

The way designers used Muse and the way many of them hosted on BC servers, could now be used as an example of bad strategy when it comes to selling sites to clients. Which may also be good for the web, as it shows that not knowing how the web works, is not only bad practice, but bad for clients.

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Apr 02, 2018 1
LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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pziecina  wrote

'best viewed in browser xxx' notice.

Oh yeah, remember that and even thought way back then that's ridiculous and so unprofessional trying to manipulate a viewer to use this or that web-browser.

pziecina  wrote

The one thing no one has talked about in all the Muse discussions, are the clients of those using it.

Clients generally don't care what or how their websites are built or if they are conceived by an amatuer or professional as long as they like the front end design and it works in the browser they are viewing in. I've just been sent a widget by a client who wants to include it on their website where the widget code still uses the <center><center> tag. I pointed out to my client no-one whose anyone in web-develpoment has used that in years because I thought the implementation of the code was just bad practice. To the client it means nothing and they don't care.

pziecina  wrote

The way designers used Muse and the way many of them hosted on BC servers, could now be used as an example of bad strategy when it comes to selling sites to clients. Which may also be good for the web, as it shows that not knowing how the web works, is not only bad practice, but bad for clients.

Of course its a bad strategy, these people know nothing about web-development but have been allowed in because of programmes such as Muse. Its no different really to me buying a powered hedge trimmer or a teloscopic chainsaw on a pole to trim the trees in my garden whereas in the past I would have had to call in a professional. Its the way of the world these days, very few speciallst still exits in the bigger picture. Dont expect it too change any time soon...

We still have companies trying to produce sofware where no coding experience is needed.......Wappler. What happened to that, its gone extremely quite since a public Beta was promised way back in Nov 2017 and still no definitive road map, one would think it's a dead project?

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Apr 02, 2018 0
LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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I agree that clients generally don't care, but in the Muse discussions the problem of transferring clients sites to another server, does not even get a mention.

It would be nice to think that Muse users would now think twice about what they are doing, but that will probably only happen with a few of them. People will always look for simple(r) solutions to anything, and lets be honest even in discussions in this forum we tend to not discuss the clients requirerments, (if any) the cost of a site, and if it is even worth a client having a site.

At least a number of the Muse alternatives use flexbox. As for Wappler, so many programs start out as the best thing to happen for web designers/developers, then quietly vanish into oblivion.

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Apr 02, 2018 1
Mentor ,
Apr 02, 2018

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pziecina  wrote

It may be wishfull thinking, but if the demise of Muse and programs like it in future, proves the folly of using programs and one size fits all solutions, then maybe developers and browsers will start to use / incorporate features faster.

pziecina  wrote

What I am thinking more of is browser support for various features, as that to me is the biggest bug bearer in web development.

Indeed, what a welcome byproduct that would be. Sadly Sparkle will probably not help the matter much either.

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Apr 02, 2018 0
LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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W_J_T  wrote

Indeed, what a welcome byproduct that would be. Sadly Sparkle will probably not help the matter much either.

The problem with Muse was that it had a large user base, now Muse users are forced to move to various other alternatives, maybe, just maybe, some of the alternatives they use will be forced to offer more modern features in order to attract those ex Muse users, and keep them in future.

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Apr 02, 2018 0
Mentor ,
Apr 02, 2018

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pziecina  wrote

The problem with Muse was that it had a large user base, now Muse users are forced to move to various other alternatives, maybe, just maybe, some of the alternatives they use will be forced to offer more modern features in order to attract those ex Muse users, and keep them in future.

It seems like most of that user base desperately wants to just migrate to another page layout app geared towards the web as their singular requirement. With no regards to closed systems, or any of the pointed out concerns or advices from others.

So I am not sure how compelled or forced any of these other app developers will be to conform to standards improvements or modern workflow ideals. That goes for those developers now making or promising the new direct Muse relative replacements which may be ready by the end date one year from now.

I am not really believing or optimistic this will be any type of catalyst to propel things forward. Mostly because it seems the majority of the Muse users don't see it as an opportunity to move themselves forward or think about things from a clearer broader perspective.

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Apr 02, 2018 0
LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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W_J_T  wrote

It seems like most of that user base desperately wants to just migrate to another page layout app geared towards the web as their singular requirement. With no regards to closed systems, or any of the pointed out concerns or advices from others.

Without the very large plug-in base that was available to Muse, most of those migrating to other apps will find that they cannot do even half of what Muse was capable of, even if it was not very good.

I don't know what the end user statistics are for Muse created sites, but if it even comes close to the none e-comm or none cms driven site average, most would be zombie sites within months of going live. Given that Muse users are choosing the same type of set-up, but with less plug-ins, I don't think that they have any future that someone, (client or other) should or would invest in.

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Apr 02, 2018 1
Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 02, 2018

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If you ask me, FrontPage, GoLive and Musers are all in the same leaky boat.

Musrs who build sites only for themselves (amateurs/hobbyists) will likely place more value on ease of use than any other single factor.   It won't surprise me if they continue to use Muse for several more years. 

Musers who build static sites for profit are learning that the ease of use they enjoyed with Muse, widgets & templates hasn't helped their careers much.  If anything, the Muse demise is especially hard felt because they can't work with the code.  I'm already seeing reports of Muse code causing crashes in other editors.

Then there are the Business Catalyst partners who have an even bigger dilemma.  Do they team up with a similar  platform like Synergy 8 and hope it thrives?  

Introducing Synergy 8 (BC alternative)

Or do they move the whole shebang to open source frameworks like WP and Drupal?  And how well will they cope with that learning curve?

In the end, I think some people will take this as a wake-up call and fight for their lives to learn front-end and backend code/frameworks, etc... while others simply fade away.  

Nancy O'Shea, ACP
Alt-Web Design & Publishing

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Apr 02, 2018 0
LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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https://forums.adobe.com/people/Nancy+OShea  wrote

Then there are the Business Catalyst partners who have an even bigger dilemma.  Do they team up with a similar  platform like Synergy 8 and hope it thrives?  

Introducing Synergy 8 (BC alternative) 

Or do they move the whole shebang to open source frameworks like WP and Drupal?  And how well will they cope with that learning curve?

In the end, I think some people will take this as a wake-up call and fight for their lives to learn front-end and backend code/frameworks, etc... while others simply fade away.  

The BC users are the ones I do really feel sorry for, especially, (don't know if you remember) when a number of the reasons given for introducing the ability to create cms themes and ignoring the requirements of php development in Dw, was that BC and open-source cms's were the future, and not custom solutions or the ability to code php in Dw beyond small scripts for things like form processing.

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Apr 02, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 02, 2018

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I've never used BC.  But if I understand correctly, it uses Liquid.   Liquid is an open-source template language created by Shopify and written in Ruby.   I don't think DW understands Liquid templates.

Nancy O'Shea, ACP
Alt-Web Design & Publishing

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LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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The trouble with a lot, if not most open-source template solutions, is that they all gained support only with a small section of the development community, then faded into obscurity as new solutions and ideas took there place, (only to be replaced by the next solution).

Templates for those who required them initially, gave way to modular and server side solutions for many developers.

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Apr 02, 2018 0
W_J_T LATEST
Mentor ,
Apr 02, 2018

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@Nancy after a quick look, it appears those connections are correct.

pziecina  wrote

Without the very large plug-in base that was available to Muse, most of those migrating to other apps will find that they cannot do even half of what Muse was capable of, even if it was not very good.

My guess is they will spend numerous amounts of time bouncing to and fro seeking and searching for the exact combo of features. Unless one of the Muse replacements which are being vaguely talked about creates the exact same eco system, then they will just need to keep searching. But even if the same entire system of features, widgets, whiz bang what nots, comes about via something else or something existing they could very easily (most likely) end up in the exact same situation they find themselves in now. With this approach the actual search always was and remains perpetual, but I guess that is the sole criteria for most of them.

----

WYSIWYG is now being touted as the "shoulder of giants" , "way of the future", using native files or knowledge is stated as "belongs to the past". Maybe us as developers are the ones on the short side of the stick in all this. ~~ sarcasm

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Apr 02, 2018 2
LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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Here's a thought.

With Muse and front end web site builders, (even Dw) the functionality and look of a page are mainly driven by what clients think end users will want or accept, and of course the designers/developers abilities, plus the widgets/plug-ins they have or can get.

Once one moves into the development of the back-end or browser based applications, the functionality and the look and feel are dictated 100% by the requirerments of the admin/app user. If the back-end/app cannot do what is required the client/user will not accept the limitation(s) and if the developer cannot do what is required the back-end/app is considered a failure.

How much of Muse's demise and the removal of Dw's SB's to Dw's decline, can be attributed to the requirerments of having a back-end/app designed and built to the end users requirerments. Wordpress and similar are cheap clunky alternatives when it comes to the back-end, and for browser based apps they do not even come into the running for most requirements.

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Apr 02, 2018 0
LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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pziecina  wrote

Once one moves into the development of the back-end or browser based applications, the functionality and the look and feel are dictated 100% by the requirerments of the admin/app user. If the back-end/app cannot do what is required the client/user will not accept the limitation(s) and if the developer cannot do what is required the back-end/app is considered a failure.

Absolutely right. I lose many websites because I cannot provide the back-end app that a client wants/needs. I dont have the necessary skill level beyond creating a simple bespoke CMS system. In these cases and in the particular sector in which I work then the client doesnt really care what the front end looks like, as long as its not a complete pigs ear. Very often functionality is more important than the visual aspect and where fuctionality is a necessity that will win every time. Of course if one can combine the 2 that's the best of both worlds.

pziecina  wrote

How much of Muse's demise and the removal of Dw's SB's to Dw's decline, can be attributed to the requirerments of having a back-end/app designed and built to the end users requirerments. Wordpress and similar are cheap clunky alternatives when it comes to the back-end, and for browser based apps they do not even come into the running for most requirements.

I was quite disappointed to discover the other day that one of the website developers I follow and have great respect for, a small but innovative company, has move form building bespoke CMS's to Wordpress! I'm willing to acceot that maybe a bespoke CMS is just too costly to build from scratch when you are working for a medium sized company, sad but true, I think. Personally I'm not going there because if I'm not happy or comfortable with a workflow or I think its a case of  'a race to the bottom' I'd rather find aomething else to do than prossstitute my services. I realise I'm in a fortunate position to be able to do that but how many discontented web-developers must there be out there forced into using workflows that they dont really believe in but must follow them to survive.

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Apr 02, 2018 1
LEGEND ,
Apr 02, 2018

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osgood_  wrote

Absolutely right. I lose many websites because I cannot provide the back-end app that a client wants/needs. I dont have the necessary skill level beyond creating a simple bespoke CMS system. In these cases and in the particular sector in which I work then the client doesnt really care what the front end looks like, as long as its not a complete pigs ear. Very often functionality is more important than the visual aspect and where fuctionality is a necessity that will win every time. Of course if one can combine the 2 that's the best of both worlds.

What we found with back-end/apps, was that if one had not actually worked in the industry one was creating the app for, it was very difficult to know and appreciate the why something was required, and the how it should work.

That was why about 70% of the developers I worked with had chosen web development as a 2nd career, and were originally from the required engineering or speciality background.

It is only possible I think to create back-end/apps successfully with a full range of the requirements, if you have worked in the profession that you are creating for. Unless it is only for a very generalised back-end/app requirerment. A lot of the requirements can be generalised and the finer details  specified by talking to a number people from that profession (talking to them often, as people will add to the list the more they think about it), but for a developer working within a limited budget, it is unlikely they will have the time allocated to do so.

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