Nvu is dead?!

Do you remember NVU? It was once introduced as the successor of all HTML editors, and was placed (well, at least by the marketing) as an alternative to Frontpage and Dreamweaver. The 1.0 release was in June 2005 – and I never heard anything of it again.

So, welcome to the world of software: such stuff happens all the time both with proprietary software and with open source software. There are other projects which disappeared suddenly.

Fortunately, this time there are more information left, and it doesn’t sound to bad:
The author of NVU is working on a successor building upon the new Gecko engine and refactoring the whole code to take advantage of other techniques like SVG and stuff.
There is also quite a lot of progress the last weeks and months, so we will probably see something working early next year. In the meantime there is a community-fixed fork of NVU, kompozer.

This brings another topic to my mind: sometimes I come across software pages where I want to get an impression where the development is at this moment and how active the project is – and I’m almost unable to find anything. Even worse is the situation when you try to gather information about future releases. Only few projects have clear roadmaps or release plans.
Sure, in case of commercial software (especially in case of proprietary, commercial software) the pages disappear after some time when there is no development. But other pages are just not updated anymore and continue to exist and show release dates some years in the past.
But, on the other hand: sometimes the developers do not keep the omepage up2date because they are to busy developing 😉 And in such cases, e-mail lists and svn/cvs commits are a good source to get an impression of the project.


5 thoughts on “Nvu is dead?!”

  1. i think NVU has the problem of a small userbase. professional users (esp PHP fans) most likely use Quanta or go for Bluefish. the NVU advantage is mostly WYSIWYG, but those things are being worked on (or already working) in Quanta and Bluefish. so NVU simply has a small market, and i think that’s one of the reasons why not many developers work on it…

  2. Yes, this is certainly a reason – besides, there wasn’t any real development on NVU, they witched to the new program quite fast, and that’s not the way how you create a persistent and ongoing community…

  3. Unfortunately, since Kompozer’s author reached an agreement to work with Glazman (NVU’s author) on a supposed new version, he stopped developping Kompozer and we’re left with all the bugs not corrected in Kz 0.77.
    From personal experience with him, Glazman is an authoritarian type who, once he decides a bug is a “wontfix” will never change his mind, no matter how much it hinders the product. Great coders are good, great coders with social abilities are much better.

  4. Just my humble opinion, but NVU, like many other Linux software, are in their growing stages. And there is a lot of potential there. I liked using it. better than the KDE web authoring system. And it is certainly more friendly than Bluefish. However, in time, it will hopefully make a niche for itself as the ‘Frontpage’ of Linux… which I don’t think is a bad thing. My personal take here, if you’re interested: http://alternativenayk.wordpress.com/2007/01/22/bluefish-nvu-dreamweaver-web-publishing-review/

  5. Why do you think that NVU is in a growing stage when the main developer said he quited the project? Do you now of any other development efforts really improving the code?

    And about your review:
    I don’t really see the point of comparing a code-only tool to one with major WYSIWIG functions. These are two totally different tools with totally different application areas.
    For example, Dreamweaver is maybe the choice – if you want to have a WYSIWIG editor. But in case you are a professional web editor you might not use a WYSIWIG editor and you only edit code – in such cases there other quite a lot of alternatives. Like Quanta+ or others.

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