blog by

rob kircher

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Windows Live Writer

So you thought creating posts for your blog using Word was cool (at least some of you did) well that pales in comparison to using Microsoft's Windows Live Writer.  What an awesome tool.  


This tool is a real time WYSIWYG editor which downloads you blogs styles and displays you posts, as you create them, just how they’re going to look to your readers.  Background color, text color, text styles, hyperlink styles all displayed exactly how they will look on your finished blog. 

In addition, it provides much easier access to items like hyperlink creation, insertion of images (note the fancy image reflection added by Writer.  There are several options like this), photo albums, tables, maps, tags and video clips plus a bunch more add-in available on the internet.   Particularly interesting is the hyperlink feature.  It provides an easy to use dialog box with options to force the linked page into  new window and a cool feature  allows easy creation of links back to previous blog entries.  It also has the ability to remember hyperlinks and automatically apply them the next time you type the key word.  So for example if I often hyperlink to a site like NASCAR I can have Writer remember that and the next time I type NASCAR  the hyperlink is automatically applied.  Or, as I have it set here, automatically apply the hyperlink the first time the word is used in the entry.   

Another cool feature is the ability to show a preview of you new entry in your full blog without actually posting it.  I have often posted an entry and then gone back to edit things like text alignment or add/remove extra lines etc because I didn’t like how it looked when posted.  Well now all I have to is click preview and there it is as if it was posted.  Don’t like something then its back to edit change and preview again. 

I’ve only begun to scratch the surface on the power of this tool.  It has a full HTML editor so anything not provided by a click of the mouse can be added by hand.  Text sizing, coloring and effects are a snap.  Saving local drafts is very convenient and I can open previous posts and edit them as needed.   The only draw back to this tool like the other set of tools in the Live suite is you need to have a windows live account to use them; this includes a Hotmail email account if you have one.  

Despite the need to have a Live account the tool is worth the download and try.  I think you’ll like it.  I know Writer will now be my go to tool for authoring blog entries. 


  1. OK... this looks groovy!

    Will give it a go.

  2. Good... I'm glad you like this over my past suggestion. You are just harder to please I guess. ;-)

  3. Oh, and when are you going to record some Web Ex's on this stuff. We dummies need to see someone actually move the mouse to understand some of the stuff. :-)