Getting “tangled up” in iWeb ’09

Filed as Features on February 1, 2009 12:48 pm

A raise of hands please: Blogger? Joomla? Moveable Type? WordPress?

In the world of blogging, these are more than likely the top platforms you’ll recommend to friends if they’re out to set up a new blog. But how many out there will actually recommend using iWeb? Wait, let me rephrase that question. How many Mac users will actually recommend using iWeb for publishing your blog?

How many of you are running blogs built on iWeb?

I’ve found iWeb to be useful in certain cases, and this sets aside the demographic of people who just want to build a site in minutes (wait, isn’t that what Blogger.com does as well?). Now I found iWeb to be extremely proficient for setting up a typical “welcome” or “about me” page that isn’t your blog. And I do know people who do this — with their blog.domainname.com running on self hosted WordPress and their main domainname.com running a splash page easily built using iWeb.

widget_iweb

Look, I’m not trying to dis an easy to use WYSIWYG editor. I just find it silly how iWeb seems to be the weakest link among all the other iLife apps (take a look at iPhoto ’09 with its Photo and Location tagging) and in terms of easy customization, one of the hardest to customize compared to let’s say Blogger.com. Take a look at the limited number of widgets available on the screen shot above. Is Apple in some sort of stasis field, or are they really pushing for people to stick to their proprietary tech? Case in point: it’s easier to upload a Mobile.Me widget for photos than it is to find a widget that does a Flickr photo stream on iWeb. What gives?

Let’s just say that I was hoping for so much more for this release of iWeb. It’s either Apple is running out of ideas or they’re being mandated to not give too much. For me, it’s the latter, as there really seems to be a disconnect when it comes to the innovation level of iWeb compared to the other ’09 app releases.

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  1. By Gniewni posted on February 2, 2009 at 1:08 am
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    You’re on the track

    thx

    Reply

  2. By Clarky posted on February 2, 2009 at 6:37 am
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    Well, I haven’t used it because I don’t know it at all, I think that I won’t use it because I only want to use computer to write blogs.

    Reply

  3. By Brian posted on February 4, 2009 at 10:52 am
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    I updated to iLife 09 because of the features added to iPhoto, iMovie, and one feature in particular to iWeb – easy FTP publishing to your own domain.

    Now having played with it for a bit, my excitement has lessened a bit due to Apple’s reluctance for supporting people who don’t want to use Mobile Me. For example, “search” and commenting can only be done with a Mobile Me account – no support for those who publish via FTP on their own domain.

    You’re comments above were spot on too … there wasn’t much to this iteration that was really compelling (except for that little facet I mentioned). However, maybe in a few iterations down the road, we’ll finally get what we’re asking for. But by then, Apple will still be behind the 8 ball when it comes to online publishing …

    … unless it’s using their proprietary solutions.

    Which is a farce.

    Reply

  4. By Jayvee Fernandez posted on February 4, 2009 at 1:30 pm
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    hi brian – the FTP uploads are definitely a blessing. i’ve linked em up to my dreamhost account. but yeah, Apple might end up to be the next Sony because of all this proprietary technology. times have changed — everyone’s going open and all of these services offered by Apple can be harnessed if not for free, for much more value.

    Reply

  5. By Brian posted on February 4, 2009 at 2:01 pm
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    I don’t know about being the next Sony – I don’t think Sony ever had the broad brand appeal Apple enjoys at the moment.

    I tend to believe that the Apple App Store is going to be a model that they take much, much further – and could be properly positioned as a feature in iWeb. What I would like to see is the ability for the community of developers to be allowed the access to users who would use their widgets, themes, etc. – and the central place to get these are through the Apple App Store. A mix of free and pay-per-app would be ideal … those who want to make freeware for others to enjoy, and those who provide professional-grade apps that cost a few bucks – both could see huge benefits in this community.

    And Apple would see their place further cemented in yet another industry that they have not really “gotten” … publishing.

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  6. By Brian posted on February 4, 2009 at 2:03 pm
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    BTW: I do not believe in the Mobile Me model.

    Handy? – absolutely. Necessary? – hardly (for most).

    I think this is a futile waste on Apple’s part, and do not see how they can make this a compelling offer for $100 a year for those who already have hosting plans, etc.

    Gimmicks will only get you so far … such is the case of .mac and now Mobile Me.

    Reply

  7. By Hetty posted on March 6, 2009 at 10:09 am
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    The trouble I am having with iWeb3 (iLife09) makes iWeb fairly useless. It’s the blog/podcast/comments that causes trouble. iWeb3 misplaces images in the wrong posts, and it produces a faulty rss feed. Each time you add a new entry other images are misplaced. It even picks up images from an other blog and site and puts them in a different blog/site.
    Not a word from Apple so far. Apple is losing it.
    Apple is bling, like Safari4 is bling. Bugged like nothing before.

    Reply

  8. By haakondahl posted on September 18, 2009 at 11:33 am
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    Yup. Apple seems to be going in two directions at once right now. I love their stuff, and I resent that they’re trying to nudge me into using their services. Just tried iWeb ’09, and that nudge felt a lot like a shove.
    I have long-estabished services which I have no intention to change. Pity Apple doesn’t want to let me use their tools (which I paid for) to do what *I* want.

    Reply

  9. By Juju posted on May 17, 2010 at 9:48 pm
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    I just started using iweb for a crafty blog. I enjoy the ease of use. I do not have a mobile me account and am hosting it on a colo. I ftp all of my updates up to it. The only thing i am having problems with is adding pictures. Since it’s a crafty blog I do have some pic heavy posts. The first couple of pics are fine but then towards the bottom the pictures jump up a few lines and i have to go back in and edit and resave. Its annoying.

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  10. By Katy posted on November 10, 2010 at 10:50 pm
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    The more I use iWeb (and I do have the latest 09 version), the more I find it laughable that Apple is not the leader in template driven software. I am styling sites for people other than my “auntie” and I am discovering that Intuit and SquareSpace and of course the WordPress and other blog sites let me do way more than iWeb does. Luckily there are a lot of helpful techies out there (like YOU!) that post solutions. But still it is time consuming and shows a weakness in The Force, Luke. IE: is iWeb truly representative of Apple’s usual brilliance??? I think NOT. And I’m a fan!

    Reply

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