Blocs, RW, Everweb for specific purpose

Warning - this is a LONG post, but really looking for feedback, especially by those using Blocs for a similar purpose. This is NOT a troll post…

Background - was a software engineer/architect for quite some time, mostly backend, services/daemons, DB but also some front-end web, so ‘full-stack’ but begrudgingly, as I never enjoyed the morass of CSS and front-end web dev but could if/when forced to. :wink:

Used Dreamweaver long ago, but for personal sites wanted simple and easy, not hand-coding everything just to do the equivalent of some sites based on specific personal interest areas which amounted to a few sites with a fair amount of content, but primarily categorized blog entries and HOWTOs, image galleries, etc. Used iWeb briefly(just too limiting + domain locked), then Sandvox for well over a decade as ‘good enough and can do it quickly.’ Did a few community type sites using Drupal + a fair amount of work, but not looking to go that route again currently. Have also done some Wordpress sites, but it’s not for me.

Work and life put a pause on my collection of domains for a while, but now have been reviving them with updated material as well as some new subject areas and possibly building out a few more domains. Sandvox still works, has quirks and is dated with basically zero support, so looking for something to use, ideally for the next decade or so. :slight_smile: The same general philosophy applies now more than ever - I’m fine with some amount of initial setup to tweak the general site layout, but then a new category or entry needs to be pretty much templatized, add content and publish. May do a simple PayPal-driven shop on one of them in the future. I may do a simple site here or there for a friend, but have more than enough work I’m not looking to make money out of this unless it’s via one of my own domains or my wife’s, which would be a combination HOWTO + small # of purchase links at best. My general pattern is pretty much several domains with each covering a few categories of content, blog/article style, ability to contact, comments allowed but not truly needed.

Preferences

  • desktop application, non-subscription model. Mass bonus points if also has an iPadOS version.
  • Has a reasonable approximation of ‘blog’ mode with baked in next/prev
  • Has a reasonable semi-auto-generated site nav, e.g. simple global menu creation and subsections, collections, etc.
  • Ability to inject, examine or override code - html, CSS, php - to varying degrees
  • Has reasonable set of templates or quick layout that are not individual add-on/$. Not looking for any crazy 1000+ free templates, just some basics with selection of layout and e.g. header image colors…Sandvox type is fine, e.g. top nav + main page with or without sidebar, etc.
  • Creating a single layout that can then be easily cloned is also fine as long as e.g. menus/nav etc. all update accordingly.
  • Sane image re-sampling - e.g. do something intelligent and auto-resample for web when I drop a 4K image in, or if I re-size inline in the tool from full screen to quarter screen, etc.
  • No excess pay to make useful much beyond the initial purchase. I don’t mind paying for good software or a truly worthwhile set of templates or similar, but some seem to think every feature, template or tutorial is an upsell ‘opportunity.’ Meh.

What I liked about Sandvox

  1. Once site layout and theme selection was sorted, it’s quick to add a new entry (blog or article) or new category and be done - ability to focus on the content.
  2. Once set up, adding to sitewide menu for e.g. a new category or section is simple checkbox
  3. Reasonable enough for template selection (although unable to customize easily)
  4. Pay once and keep it, not locked into hosting or working online only.
  5. Ability to convert any group of pages into a ‘collection’ e.g. subsection, with the master easily becoming a menu item.
  6. Simple things - remained simple. Drag an image in, re-size in place. Limited but drag and drop to an extent. Clickbox for adding a caption or not. Want the image or caption to be a link? Simple - select and add link, done, next. Add a new article or blog entry and the sub-section auto-updates for prev/next nav within the section.

What I don’t like in Sandvox

  1. Completely static in width, so yeah - pretty much still in the 2000s.
  2. It’s getting dated - simple things like lack of content spell-check, limited layout options, etc. Not handling HEIC files and converting.
  3. Lack of full layout control or customization
  4. No support other than community or move-forward roadmap.

Looking at options, it comes down to:

  1. Keep using Sandvox until it’s dead. It is at least 64 bit, but there are no signs of life or intent to update from Karelia so it’s a matter of time.
  2. Everweb
  3. RapidWeaver
  4. Blocs
  5. Sparkle
  6. Mobirise
  7. Something like Pinegrow doing more by hand than I want to, or locking into some hosting site and online editing. Not workable for me at this time.

Mobirise
This one is interesting as a last discovered candidate, seemingly surprisingly pretty capable, but their model is basically use their hosting or for standalone use - ‘it’s free’ but buy a $99 content pack to make it nice…which is OK but if you go that route the content pack becomes a subscription, after which if you don’t keep it up, you can’t create any more sites or content with the ‘premium’ themes/content pack. So - I think I’m passing on evaluating it any further. It’s kind of like Blocs in that you drag/drop blocks/sections onto the pages.

Everweb
Quirky but was reasonably easy to knock something out in. I can kind of see how people consider it an iWeb/Sandvox successor of sorts. Seems to store everything in XML blob messes. Preview generation is interesting, as it generates to temporary HTML, JS, etc. - which tidy pukes all over, not too surprisingly. Can’t quite figure out what it considers to be ‘sections’ (basic layout) or how to quickly re-work them, but haven’t spent much time with as of yet. Kind of strange in that it seems the default for every new page effectively has you choosing a theme versus setting a master and using that by default. Would need to create a custom theme that works for my purposes, I think.

Sparkle
Crashed after initial install. Got it back open, but it seems literally like a blank page, seeing nothing at all in the way of template or anything resembling a master or base theme or page. It does have an interesting import page from web or file, but I’m not immediately seeing how this is going to lend itself to converting hundreds of pages I have across multiple domains, etc. It’s not seeming like a bad tool, kind of neat in that ‘blank page’ desktop publishing kind of way, but seems more focused on one-off single to few page web sites versus my intent.

RW and Blocs
Right now, I’m leaning towards RW, Blocs or possibly Everweb…the former due to flexibility (which is a double-edged sword of course - more time tweaking layout, options, themes, modules…less time creating content), or Everweb for ‘good enough’ and just roll with it.

I’m really not sure which way to go at this point. Some playing around with both Blocs and RW seem to get me to the following:

  1. I remain unsure what the ‘starting set’ of actual base + ‘needed’ add-ons really is for my case on either Blocs or RW. Everyone on RW says + Stacks + Foundry or Platform but I’m unsure I need it for my purposes as this time. I’m not positive what the equivalent is for Blocs ‘must haves’ or if they really apply here for my purposes.
  2. RW seems to primarily exist for many not due to it’s inherent capabilities but because of things like Stacks and Foundry/Platform/misc add-ons. Blocs seems to be more innovation-driven on the core product while the add-on market is much smaller but has some interesting add-ons (e.g. CMS) - unsure on my final thoughts on this one at the moment other than RW $ = RW $90 + Stacks $55 + Foundry or Platform ~90…seems like 'Blocks' may also be needed for general layout drag and drop. I'm not opposed to paying for true value-add on software, but this is for personal use and some of these things (parallax, other effects) seem to be vs basic in Blocs.
  3. Both the RW trial and Blocs limit of ~2 pages or so make it difficult to truly evaluate either of them without jumping through hoops. I understand it’s a challenge as many sites today are effectively single-page sites, but something limiting the number of images, amount of content, or a higher trial page count would have helped me to really get a better feel.

Blocs

  1. Seems easy enough to create a template once you have a base layout you want to clone across and reasonable for adding menu nav items (e.g. different sections of my sites)
  2. Most of the Blocs - I just have no use for, and there is no way to just hide them. I understand why others would have a use for them building commercial sites, but I don’t presently.
  3. The Brics - I have more use for, and there are some good options for images (e.g. rounded, effects), tabbed content and such.
  4. Bootstrap based but seems to have no ability to import freely available modules? Still poking at this one.
  5. Seems to be more ‘single page’ focused, which makes sense for many sites, but not HOWTO/blog style sites I’m looking at.
  6. Similar to the above, not sure how I can make managing e.g. 100 pages and growing on a single site under 4-5 different categories - easily managed sanely… ? I do like the class manager and the Block sidebar for quick/easy deletion of elements, although when selecting, would be nice if they highlighted within the editor. I’m not quite sure yet how to e.g. clone a container in use for both a site-wide menu and a content area, to then go back and modify the clone and update one of the two blocs using ‘container’ to the clone…but am assuming it’s possible?
  7. Asset mgmt seems kind of questionable. Does not let me add my media library as a browse-able or searchable thing to it’s asset management in bulk, only single asset at a time. I’m uncertain if it does any image optimization at all if I add e.g. a 4K+ image into a page and/or re-size?
  8. Bootstrap 4 becomes EOL/out of LTS Nov 2020, so I can assume Blocs 3.x is nearing Blocs 4 release
  9. Single developer - risk of becoming the next Sandvox…

RapidWeaver

  1. Has a baked-in (standalone) blog module. The good part is - it exists, and things like archive settings and such are good. The raw ‘body’ text field lets me dump images in but best I can tell, there’s no way to do relatively simple things like add an image with caption as a default option. I’m unsure if this gets better than what I’m seeing, and it effectively injects the ‘blog’ content into the master, so it’s almost like a carved out div section or an embedded iframe…although this can be overridden, which is good.
  2. Probably a longer learning curve vs Blocs, while certainly both are more time to ‘first batch of content published’ vs e.g. Everweb.
  3. Easy to inject CSS/JS into pages
  4. Best I can tell, no drag and drop capabilities. It’s popssible this is added via a $ purchase (Stacks + Blocks?)
  5. Even more confusing to determine what I’d really want to/need to add to get to what I want…
  6. Asset mgmt - access to unsplash is nice but not magical for me. Lets me add my media library into the browser for Sources, but doesn’t filter out not convert HEIC images. Entirely uncertain if it does any optimization when bringing a 4K+ image into a page or resizing, etc.
  7. RW8 is probably also about due for a major rev to 9.x - added + per add-on? (RW is also Bootstrap 4 based…)
  8. Multiple developers but seems more innovation is on the third party front than in core product.

I think I want to like Blocs better somehow, as I like the ‘building blocks with customization’ approach, and the brics
If I go with Blocs, or Blocs + some of Eldar’s content, e.g. the mastering series or templates, what happens on Blocs 4 release? Blocs upgrades seem to be a 30% discount - what about purchased add-ons? This + lack of a blog module and unsure how to manage larger #s of pages/articles within a single site is giving me pause here.

Similar issues exist with RW - there are some neat things out there including some free add-ons, while an upgrade is likely coming, and while still unsure of my real ‘total’ investment to get to what I want/need - am I duplicating all of it within a year?

If I had to prioritize my needs, it would be something like this:
Able to manage multiple sites via desktop (+ iPad would be great…) app for multiple domains.

  • Each site consists of several sections with many articles/blog entries under each + a couple of standard pages - overview, about/contact.
  • Auto-updating Menus as needed at top level and sub-section including prev/next within a category
  • Ability to create or use a general master layout or theme - for whole site or at least each sub-section/category. May override for specific/individual pages but not the bulk.

Ability to sanely manage within the tool itself.

  • The 100+ pages across categories
  • Access to images in my library sanely, ideally with image optimization on injection into a page (e.g. 4K image -> resample and resize appropriately)

General/Misc

  • Basic capabilities across nav, image handling (w/captions), image gallery, comment and contact support.
  • A level of drag and drop for layout, image placement, etc. Can also be menu driven as a fallback, e.g. for image and gallery placement, section layout, widths, etc.
  • Ability to inject or override CSS, JS for analytics and other purposes/theme modification.
  • Ability once a site is set up - layout, theme, etc. - to focus on the content creation, e.g. clone or new <entry|article|page> from template/master, add content needed (generally text, images, links) and publish.

Thoughts or even ‘you can do this by X’ for specific items VERY welcome!

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You can get a blog functionality with Volt CMS.

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And a whole lot more.

2 Likes

Welcome to the forum @rtp , I just want to express great post !

A few years ago in a thread I posted about Mobirise and feel much if not all of that still applies (aside from perhaps pricing fluctuations). Out of curiosity did you also look at Bootstrap Studio? Why do you feel Pinegrow locks you into hosting and online editing, I’ve never encountered either? Pinegrow is also making a no-code app to be released at some point, it was confirmed by their developers.

The next version of Blocs will release later this year. Not much is currently known feature wise aside from tidbits spread across the forum, but it will have Wordpress support. Also Bootstrap 5 will of course be supported when released.

I’m heading out now but may respond in-depth at a later time. You presented much to read through and assess for properly responding in a quick manner. Again great post, welcome. :wink:

That’s quite a list. The problem you’re likely to face in your final choice is that you can’t have everything in a single app. There was a time when most web design apps were essentially adaptations of page-layout apps which gave you the relative freedom to work on a blank canvas and simply add and position things wherever you like. Sparkle is one such app that still uses this methodology of laying out web pages. It’s a completely free format application that lets you put things down like you were designing for print. Of course, the downside is that it doesn’t produce responsive web sites - it creates adaptive websites which means you have to design for each breakpoint individually. Neither does it allow you the freedom to add code in specific parts of your web page, or add things like custom attributes. This is deliberately designed into the app because the developer firmly believes that the application should be used for creating pages by simply adding standard elements to the project. He doesn’t believe that people should be able to tinker under the hood.

That said, I do use Sparkle in conjunction with blocs for some of the websites I create. Some of my websites incorporate scripts (shopping carts, memberships, etc) many of the script solutions are themselves built on a bootstrap framework which often leads to conflicts when they are embedded into a blocs site. Therefore, I use Sparkle for embedded script content and just access those pages through the main, blocs-built site.

As far as blocs goes, it is a good option because it can do most things you are looking to do. Obviously, it isn’t going to handle blog posts in the same way as a dedicated blogging platform, but it can be used to create blog sites as long as you don’t mind creating your posts in the blocs environment.

All those Blocs you mentioned are built into blocs as a convenience - you don’t have to use them if you don’t want them. They are simply pre-built templates that you can place on your page and then adapt or use as is. If you really didn’t want them to be in the blocs app at all, there is nothing stopping you from removing them altogether. You do it through the extension manager.

I don’t think blocs should be viewed as a single page preference. Many users make websites of hundreds of pages with few if any issues. However, anyone planning on such a large website would do well to utilise some website logistics at the planning stage. in many respects, creating a series of smaller sites (sections) is a far more logical approach than trying to bring hundreds of pages together in a single project. For example, I’m creating a cookery site for a client at the moment that will have in excess of 1700 pages - mainly recipes. Clearly this would be logistical nightmare to create as one single project. Therefore, I’ve broken it down into mini sites, each of which can be published to their own directory and all linked together va a common navigation structure. This is how the structure looks:

Adding code to a blocs website isn’t difficult either. There are plenty of options for adding file attachments, or embedding code in any part of the page. You can also add custom styling to almost everything in your project. This is why blocs is so flexible - it doesn’t tie you to doing things in a specific way to suit the app.

Of course, you are going to have to make compromises regardless of the app you eventually choose, but there is no need to assume just because a particular feature isn’t staring you in the face as a one-click option, that it can’t be done. Like most software products, its has to be learned and you have to discover the breadth of features available to you in a particular app. Blocs is no different.

For all the things you’ve included in your list, I don’t see anything that cannot be achieved in blocs. You may have to resort to some third-party features if you want a CMS solution for blogging, but even that is available as an add-on through the blocs store. If you don’t mind manually creating your blog, that can be done right out of the box. This is a prime example of where you may want to break down your project into manageable sections. You start with a main site, then create a blog site that links to your main site. This way, whenever you want to edit or add blog posts, you only have to fire up the blog project file and update that only.

It’s very difficult making fair comparisons between website applications from the past. Times have changed, websites have changed and the way users interact with websites has changed. At least with blocs, it caters to the current needs of web designers and users and leaves you free to worry more about content than tools that can be used to achieve specific things that you wish were a single click option. All web design apps have their advantages and disadvantages. you just have to go with the one that gives you the greatest flexibility to do what you want to do. Apart from hand coding, there is no way to find a one size fits all solution where every conceivable wish has been pre-empted by the app developers and made available in a single app.

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Yes, but not sure it’s needed, at least at this point. Might change if I wind up doing sites for anyone else, but right now, I’m the content author as well - and am already doing 60-80 hour weeks as the norm in the day job, so it’s about making the content easy to create and publish, versus building another community contributed or someone-else-producing-content type site.

Perfect. You will then love Volt CMS blogging feature. No need to start Blocs and FTP upload your new content. Just add new posts with any device.

Of course that can be added later on.

Good luck :+1:

Welcome to the forum @rtp , I just want to express great post !

A few years ago in a thread I posted about Mobirise and feel much if not all of that still applies (aside from perhaps pricing fluctuations). Out of curiosity did you also look at Bootstrap Studio? Why do you feel Pinegrow locks you into hosting and online editing, I’ve never encountered either? Pinegrow is also making a no-code app to be released at some point, it was confirmed by their developers.

Trying to sort how to properly quote and unsure I’m doing it (used to UBB, SMF forums, etc…) but…

Yeah - apologies on the insanely long post, but writing it helped me to actually focus on what I’m really looking for the most… and have read and trialed about as much as I can at this point.

Read your linked to comments on Mobirise, and we’re definitely on the same page - seems like it has some good capabilities but the model such as it is today, and possibly management of it - is turning me off from real consideration by me right now.

I have not looked at Bootstrap Studio - just scanned right now and found their reproduction of Apple’s iPhone X era website on Youtube . The tool itself is very cool, and reminds me of my ‘day job’ as one of the teams I manage handles cross-company design and component frameworks. I likely combined Pinegrow’s comments with some others I’d stumbled across - I may give Pinegrow + Tailwind a trial download, but I think they and Bootstrap Studio, while being great in their own right - are a level below what I’d like to do for initial setup and then focusing on content creation.

I think that’s the crux of the issue I’m having. There are times when ‘out of the box’ of some tool isn’t enough and you want or need to override the behavior… or add your own, but for my personal use I want to focus more on the content creation portion vs endless tweaks to layout etc. I’m sort of looking for that in-between which lets me come up with a reasonably ‘good enough’ layout or lets me adjust it (whether by inherent adjustments, CSS modification, etc.) for cranking out lots of articles, where I can make adjustments, but once done for a given site, I want to focus on cranking out content in each category…and finding both the ‘easy’ button (cranking out content + drag/drop images, galleries + auto-menu and nav updates) while also allowing me to adjust what doesn’t fit…is what’s giving me fits. :smile:

Looks like quoting partial text from your response is not immediately obvious to me, but yes - agree fully on Sparkle, and why it’s just not for me in this case.

As far as blocs goes, it is a good option because it can do most things you are looking to do. Obviously, it isn’t going to handle blog posts in the same way as a dedicated blogging platform, but it can be used to create blog sites as long as you don’t mind creating your posts in the blocs environment.

I don’t need it to be a full blogging platform, and I prefer to create the articles within the tool - Blocs or whatever vs online. I see @InStacks/Jannis pushing VoltCMS, but in this case, I don’t WANT to do online articles via a web browser - I’m faster and more efficient doing it on my MBP, or in a pinch from my iPad…but haven’t looked at the specific integration as of yet. All I need here is sane section management for each grouping of articles/blog posts from a mgmt standpoint and from a nav and menu standpoint + Discus integration, really. In that context, the rest is important at the specific page/article/blog entry level, meaning once overall site layout is sorted, the ability to quickly add a new content page in a relevant section, add text, images, video from my sources, and get it published.

I don’t think blocs should be viewed as a single page preference. Many users make websites of hundreds of pages with few if any issues. However, anyone planning on such a large website would do well to utilise some website logistics at the planning stage. in many respects, creating a series of smaller sites (sections) is a far more logical approach than trying to bring hundreds of pages together in a single project. For example, I’m creating a cookery site for a client at the moment that will have in excess of 1700 pages - mainly recipes. Clearly this would be logistical nightmare to create as one single project. Therefore, I’ve broken it down into mini sites, each of which can be published to their own directory and all linked together va a common navigation structure. This is how the structure looks:

So this makes sense. It’s a mental disconnect for me, having some fairly large code projects loaded into Eclipse and other tools with large trees, but it makes sense - I suppose I could create the general site, about, contact + do a top-level menu or nav to each section, then treat each section as a mini-site. Makes sense but have to fight in my head for a bit. :slight_smile:

I appreciate the detailed response. I probably need to do some more thinking here. I did post effectively the same post over on rw4all forums to get ‘the other side’ thinking as well… as someone inevitably will point out, and I think you alluded to, there really is no ‘perfect tool for all,’ just the right set of compromises for a specific purpose in most cases. Right now I’m feeling like if Blocs would add a native blog or article object and have a baby with Bootstrap Studio + intelligent media import/resampling, I’d be set, but of course we can all dream, right? :smiley:

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Ok, finally got the quoted reply working, to see the markup is pretty much standard markup, lol. :slight_smile:

@InStacks - I don’t care at ALL about having the content editable from a web browser, as in - that does almost nothing for me at all. For my sanity in my almost-none free time, I need a decent app that lets me walk through the following ideal workflow:

  1. Set up basic site theme, layout, nav/menu locations. Don’t come back and mess with this once done. (for the most part)
  2. Create basic intro content - don’t touch again once done. (for the most part)
  3. Define sections of the site, like in @hendon52 's example, this might be something like:
    Outdoor Fun / Camping
    Outdoor Fun / Camping / Gear
    Outdoor Fun / Camping / Locations
    Outdoor Fun / Camping / Trips
    Outdoor Fun / Boating
    Outdoor Fun / Boating / Choosing a boat
    Outdoor Fun / Boating / Gear

Now, normal usage - I’m going to be added content pages to each section, and sometimes a new section. Focus is on the content to get it done and published. Let’s do a dry run.

I bought a new tent and we gave it a ‘workout’ on a trip. Lots of pics synced to my Photo Library as a result. I’m going to do two articles/posts here - 1 each under Gear and Trips.

Create a new sub-page under the section. Title appropriately, possibly modify date if I’m slack as usual… :wink: Use a pre-defined general template, but mostly a blank page with site heading, nav and possibly some predefined H2 sections for Overview and Confusion, and otherwise text, drag in images preferably automatically resampled from with captions, sometimes links… proofread then publish it.

Repeat the above fairly often and there’s a fair amount of content in a timespan of a year, like the hundreds of pages I’ve got to migrate currently…

So how does VoltCMS help me do this from within Blocs or on my desktop specifically?

Is there anything Blocs specifically can do to help enable/simplify that workflow - outside of the original layout + decent media tools and effects, etc. ?

:laughing: Indeed, good luck finding a singular tool that can do everything you want without intervention or compromise, at least in the no/low code realm.

It can be assumed that Blocs 4 will probably have a multitude of new features and abilities. Of course further features will come after its initial release onwards to the next major version. The following has been said vaguely.

But it does not sound like Norm is quite ready to publicly reveal much.

You can however watch and search the forum to see various tidbits. I remember screen capturing the following earlier in the year, but can no longer seem to find the actual post, perhaps removed or hidden.

So its hard to say if Blocs 4 will fulfill enough of your desried requirements until its actually released. When it does you can of course trial it and make that determination yourself, fingers crossed :–). It sounds like you are looking for specific features more so than being concerned what framework an app may/not use.

Agree on all of the above, and am currently scanning the v4 thread…also have to deal weekly with internal and customer roadmap convos, so also totally get Norm’s reticence on announcing v4 ‘committed’ features in advance, as its not done until its done, as well as not wanting to pre-announce any ‘surprises’ to come.

I’m waffling all over on this one, but think the choice for me is between Blocs and RW. If the collective set were less $$(RW in particular as it seems likely RW + Stacks + Poster + ?), I’d go ahead and buy both. The trial limitations on both are driving me a bit nuts as my sites require at least 5-6 pages for a real sanity check. Will keep playing piecemeal with the trials a bit longer in suspect, and hope for good things in v4. :slight_smile:

I’m using both, RW8 (with Stacks and Foundry - which is BS4 - mostly) and Blocs. Concerning Rapidweaver, be sure to also look at Source (needs Stacks of course) and the very active community at rw4all too. Not as feature complete as Foundry, Foundation, UI Kit or the other frameworks, but a totally different approch using css grid.

I personally prefer the way I can create websites with Blocs though. It’s more from a designers pov, and it’s much more customisable than what you get with RW and hundreds of stacks. Each has his advantages and disadvantages. So yeah, why not use both? :wink:

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I used RW in the past before switching to Blocs and still have a couple old RW sites that occasionally need to be updated until I have time to rebuild them in Blocs. I find it horrible going back because they operate very differently and I have practically forgotten how RW works after all this time. Trying to duplicate a stack can end up deleting the page…

These websites were built in the old version of Foundation and it had some good features but the page preview speed and spinning ball when editing was awful. Everything was just so slow and the interface in Blocs is less fussy.

I saw somebody has come out with a performance stack for RW to improve matters by leveraging the gpu, which says a lot.

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Yes more RW users seem to be coming to Blocs than the other way around.

That is the perfect synopsis of RW. Rapidweaver has always seemed extremely anemic as a core app. So what you end up with is - here a plugin, there a plugin, everywhere a plugin, hey is there a plugin, I need a plugin, what plugin, etc.

Rapidweaver ends up being more like playing Jenga than web design. IMHO

Careful. :laughing:

Jenga

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Bolded part is easy:
RW $85 + Stacks 4 $65 + Poster 2 $60 + Source (free) = 210 + unknown/oops, need that too/
Blocs: $99 + <not sure yet, but doesn’t handle sections/sub-directories/non-CMS type articles currently>, hopefully for v4.
You paying? :smiley:

I also did some more playing around on some of the others a bit more.
Nicepage is an interesting thing - seems surprisingly full-featured, but the high $ ($200-$349) + history of the company (Extensoft) leaves me a bit…concerned. They had a product called Artisteer on Windows for web design and seems to have totally abandoned it and their customers. They use a ‘must have an auth cookie’ model even for desktop apps, so Artisteer paid licensed customers were saying they shut the license server off (seems resolved, but … )… Too bad on the relative pricing and overall sentiment I’m feeling, as it seems to be really well done in a lot of ways from overrides, HTML output, Joomla and WP integration (doesn’t matter to me, but will for some), and is a similar-to-Blocs Block/stacked type of system. Also has tons of designs, tables, tabs, HTML and PHP injection - seems like a ‘could potentially be very good’ if not for the aforementioned. Unsure on APIs and third party extensions though.

I played a bit more with Sparkle just to give it a fair shake, which still isn’t for me, but it does have some more capabilities than I initially attributed to it. Still no themes (seems like you can download some - maybe?) or banner, footers, so it really is a blank page to start with, but it’s freeform drag and drop, can handle some code injection, and while it has a reasonable number of attributes/adjustments, no direct CSS tweaks. Surprisingly, it claims to do some image optimization for resizing and targets, supports WebP images… but is still kinda of basic. I guess I can see how single to a few page site folks might be OK with it. Still not for me.

Nothing new with Everweb - it kinda works. I guess it’s kinda like Sparkle Plus. Kind of.

Still thinking it through - RW seems at least $200-$300 by the time ‘it works.’ If Blocs had sections, directories, or well - some way to handle many pages, it might work. At this rate I may wind up buying Everweb just to get it done, then rebuilding later in Blocs pending V4 release contents. This really is not where I want to go. Guess it’s back to playing a page at a time with Blocs to see if it might work with some pain.

I believe both Themler & Artisteer were rolled into NicePage as the chosen way forward. I’m not sure about legacy support of those previous products but most times in these situations it never goes well as users are always left behind in some way or many. The pricing you mentioned seems a bit high according to what is listed on their site? But yes the sentiment can be seen, maybe mostly due to the switch over.

I keep looking at your above comment along with desiring blog capabilities.

Why are you seeking to use a static approach for such a dynamic need? If you need blogging features then use a true blog approach not something that mimics a blog. As mentioned Blocs 4 will have Wordpress support, but there are other dynamic approaches as well. If this will be the typical magnitude which will be your common outcome - then I think you will be much better off in the long run by choosing the correct approach upfront. Instead of getting down the road and then realizing where you then find yourself regarding managing things statically.

I was massively into Rapidweaver and more so when Foundation came into play with it. At the time I was having huge issues with certain stacks not working as they should do and then updates…updates updates and too many conflicting with other stacks and made it painful in the end and then when Foundation update came out, i needed to update rapidweaver and then stacks and then the stacks would not work and then and update for them would work and throw something else out!!!

I will admit, at the time I loved it and I still reference back to it now and again and wish some of the things Foundation has, was built into Blocs.

Blocs is the more natural way for me to build and I actually enjoy it more than any other. As @Flashman said above and also when I go back to my rapidweaver/foundation sites and I do have a few moments having to think of how to do things again, where in Blocs it does seem more natural.

What does throw me in Blocs is the classes and custom classes, I 100% get how and why it works, I just feel as an example, to make like the tab bric work, the options should be build into the side bar for styling this - and same goes for all the brics. I pull my hair out at times how simple Blocs is for putting it on the page and then adding content and then to style it - I spend hrs at times searching forums, messaging people, hoping someone has read my message for help on the forum…and yes - its all possible ! and the group here are amazing - but the main design changes of a bloc/bric should 100% be simplified in the side bar. I do get for so many of you this is easy, but as an example - the hardest thing I find is how to set menu colours…and is their a way to change colour of hamburger? - background for the mobile menu should be so so simple - this is where Rapidweaver/foundation worked for me.

But right now as we speak, Blocs is my number 1 and I do love it, I am messing with wordpress elementor for certain future projects - and again, wish I could drag how they do things in Elementor into Blocs !!

I am excited to see what happens in the new version of Blocs.

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A little off topic, but…

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Hi @Malachiman - thanks for posting, yeah I did manage to sort it in the end, but I believe this should be in the sidebar - the options should just appear when the bric is selected with full customisation of everything.

The one thing I am totally stuck on is what I have posted twice on - but had no reply, but had a message today to say this is not possible since an update

  1. Menu on Hero is in white font colour so stands out on a dark image or video (and logo is white)
  2. When scroll down - it then changes to Sticky menu and the sticky bar changes to white and the font changes to dark grey and the logo is darker.

This used to be possible…but since updates its not now from what I have been told.
I have since decided to just take the text off the video/image and just keep the the white bar at the top to save all the messaging. I can do this in around 2 minutes on another platform, but on blocs its hard to get this to work.

I get the feeling - if you have white text on hero menu - then this must be the colour of the menu throughout the site.

Hmmmmm unless I build 2 replica menus…(Dark and Light!)…nah !..my brain is not alert this time of night !