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MUSE is perhaps the most user unfriendly web development tool in history

Engaged ,
Jul 04, 2017

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I'm a 30+ year software engineer that has background in all kinds of software technologies from Windows Forms apps to Enterprise level web applications.

I wanted a tool that would get me a quick and simple web site up for personal use, I thought I'd give MUSE a try since that was one of it's listed goals.  So I fire up MUSE and I immediately run into usability problems:

1.  It's unfortunately still bound to the archaic "Master" page concept, this just isn't used any more.  But regardless, I come to edit a footer that is on my "Master" from another page based on the master page ... I click, I double click, select the Text tool, do the same and nothing happens.  What SHOULD happen is Muse realizes this is on the "Master" page (this is a Muse concept so it should be aware of it's own constructs) and allow me to make the edit ... if you really feel it's necessary then warn me I'm changing the master page (allow me an option to turn these warnings off).  Do NOTHING at all just forces me to research "why" -- this already breaks a rule of what makes a good user interface/experience (especially for users NOT want to get involved in "Master" constructs).

2.  Editing menu items ... by default this are "locked" to page titles, this is nuts, plain and simple.  There is NO reason to lock the menu text to a page Title by default.  Certainly default the menu item text to the page title at instantiation but do NOT "lock" the text for the Menu item.  Having to select "Manual" for Menu Type is absolutely NOT user friendly.

3.  Sub-menus, so I quickly find hundreds of videos on how to do "Sub-Menus" in Muse ... really, 100's of videos ... the very fact I had to search (once again) on google to locate how to work with Sub-Menus and finding that it's apparently a VERY common question, then perhaps, just perhaps you really should "re-think" how you are doing sub-menus in Muse because it's clearly NOT user friendly ... where is it obvious that selecting "All Pages" will generate the necessary sub-menu items?

4.  Adding text, I have to first draw a text box before I can actually input text?  Say what?  No other web development application does this, only MUSE?  Not even Adobe's own other applications do this, so why on Earth is MUSE the exception?  It should be, I click and get a default text frame that auto expands as I type and THEN I can adjust the frame with the provided handles.  Who draws the text frame first without knowing what the complete text content is going to be??  How is that even possible without some sort of time travel?

5.  Header/Footer arrow handles sometimes aren't selectable until I move to another page and return back to the page then they are suddenly selectable again?

Now, I could go on and on and on about basic issues with what MUSE is trying to accomplish ... but as it stands right now, I don't see how this product is efficient for anyone "entry level" web designer or your business owner than just wants to get a quick and easy functional web site.

My 2 cents,

Cheers, Rob.

robains  wrote

Now, I could go on and on and on about basic issues with what MUSE is trying to accomplish ... but as it stands right now, I don't see how this product is efficient for anyone "entry level" web designer or your business owner than just wants to get a quick and easy functional web site.

Muse is not for entry level web designers, it is for designers who wish to build a web site using traditional print or design layout tools, similar to those one would find in Photoshop or inDesign.

Forget the word web, except as the medium the end product will 'print' to.

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MUSE is perhaps the most user unfriendly web development tool in history

Engaged ,
Jul 04, 2017

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I'm a 30+ year software engineer that has background in all kinds of software technologies from Windows Forms apps to Enterprise level web applications.

I wanted a tool that would get me a quick and simple web site up for personal use, I thought I'd give MUSE a try since that was one of it's listed goals.  So I fire up MUSE and I immediately run into usability problems:

1.  It's unfortunately still bound to the archaic "Master" page concept, this just isn't used any more.  But regardless, I come to edit a footer that is on my "Master" from another page based on the master page ... I click, I double click, select the Text tool, do the same and nothing happens.  What SHOULD happen is Muse realizes this is on the "Master" page (this is a Muse concept so it should be aware of it's own constructs) and allow me to make the edit ... if you really feel it's necessary then warn me I'm changing the master page (allow me an option to turn these warnings off).  Do NOTHING at all just forces me to research "why" -- this already breaks a rule of what makes a good user interface/experience (especially for users NOT want to get involved in "Master" constructs).

2.  Editing menu items ... by default this are "locked" to page titles, this is nuts, plain and simple.  There is NO reason to lock the menu text to a page Title by default.  Certainly default the menu item text to the page title at instantiation but do NOT "lock" the text for the Menu item.  Having to select "Manual" for Menu Type is absolutely NOT user friendly.

3.  Sub-menus, so I quickly find hundreds of videos on how to do "Sub-Menus" in Muse ... really, 100's of videos ... the very fact I had to search (once again) on google to locate how to work with Sub-Menus and finding that it's apparently a VERY common question, then perhaps, just perhaps you really should "re-think" how you are doing sub-menus in Muse because it's clearly NOT user friendly ... where is it obvious that selecting "All Pages" will generate the necessary sub-menu items?

4.  Adding text, I have to first draw a text box before I can actually input text?  Say what?  No other web development application does this, only MUSE?  Not even Adobe's own other applications do this, so why on Earth is MUSE the exception?  It should be, I click and get a default text frame that auto expands as I type and THEN I can adjust the frame with the provided handles.  Who draws the text frame first without knowing what the complete text content is going to be??  How is that even possible without some sort of time travel?

5.  Header/Footer arrow handles sometimes aren't selectable until I move to another page and return back to the page then they are suddenly selectable again?

Now, I could go on and on and on about basic issues with what MUSE is trying to accomplish ... but as it stands right now, I don't see how this product is efficient for anyone "entry level" web designer or your business owner than just wants to get a quick and easy functional web site.

My 2 cents,

Cheers, Rob.

robains  wrote

Now, I could go on and on and on about basic issues with what MUSE is trying to accomplish ... but as it stands right now, I don't see how this product is efficient for anyone "entry level" web designer or your business owner than just wants to get a quick and easy functional web site.

Muse is not for entry level web designers, it is for designers who wish to build a web site using traditional print or design layout tools, similar to those one would find in Photoshop or inDesign.

Forget the word web, except as the medium the end product will 'print' to.

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Jul 04, 2017 0
LEGEND ,
Jul 04, 2017

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robains  wrote

Now, I could go on and on and on about basic issues with what MUSE is trying to accomplish ... but as it stands right now, I don't see how this product is efficient for anyone "entry level" web designer or your business owner than just wants to get a quick and easy functional web site.

Muse is not for entry level web designers, it is for designers who wish to build a web site using traditional print or design layout tools, similar to those one would find in Photoshop or inDesign.

Forget the word web, except as the medium the end product will 'print' to.

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Engaged ,
Jul 04, 2017

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Ok, but it doesn't change the issues around basic human interaction.  Too many items are rigid (i.e. sub-menus) and it seems a subscription to Muse-themes is needed to get around some of the UI weakness if one wants to quickly get results be it "web" or "print".

Cheers, Rob.

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LEGEND ,
Jul 04, 2017

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As a front end web developer, i agree with you, as a graphics designer when i try to think of how to do a menu for rwd, and imagine i know nothing about unordered lists of checkbox hacks, then i can understand why Muse menu creation works as it does.

Even what i would call simple html, css and javascript to fix some problems i read about users having, is not so simple to someone who does not know the subjects. Conversely a knowledge of tempo, color and form, are not something that most web developers would know about, but graphic designers do, and Muse though not perfect does offer the possibility of using basic graphic design principles, to build a web site without touching css at all.

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Explorer ,
Nov 02, 2017

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I share your viewpoints. I've tried Muse as my previous weapon of choice, Freeway, seems to struggle with this responsive thing. I'm also a graphic designer, and as such am allergic to code, so I need software that enables me to work without it. Despite my best attempts to get a site that consists of nothing more than a header, baseblock and menu strip to behave in any way that is coherent or dependable is proving so bad I feel like binning it.

Now, I find I can't even select anything unless it is on a master page. I've quit, gone back in, restarted, it's still not working. I'm sadly reaching the conclusion that this is an inarticulate piece of tat.

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Nov 02, 2017 0