Recently a number of people in the web community, specifically developers have been complaining about Adobe Muse, a website creation tools for people without coding knowledge. And while I agree that Adobe doesn’t know what the community wants, I think the reactions to this tool have been a little too big. Here are my musings (I couldn’t resist that badboy).
First up Muse isn’t a new concept. In fact there are a billion and one tools to allow people without knowledge of coding to build websites, SquareSpace is just one example. They are not aimed at people who know HTML and CSS, and so people like me don’t use them. But the reason these applications are popular isn’t because making websites is easy, or because everyone has a web-designer within them, it’s because people usually start off with a great template. People who don’t have a design background and who then use a service like Muse to build a site without a template, generally end up with a crap website. Does that bother me? Nope, it doesn’t impact my trade in a bad way, in fact it’s good if anything because I can say to potential clients “look at what this guy did, it doesn’t look very good does it? And that’ why you should work with me.”.
Using a tool like Muse is like buying a microwave meal, it looks the part, it tastes mediocre, and it’s full of crap. Although you can create websites with Muse, as developers know, the code it spits out isn’t great. This impacts things like SEO, thus making the website harder to find.
Anyone that follows me on Twitter knows that I do sometimes complain about Photoshop. Sure there are some bugs, it’s way over-priced, and the company that makes it has lost touch with the creative industry, but to be honest it does the job. I don’t expect great things from Adobe, and neither should you. While they are off spending time and effort creating nasty applications like Muse (written in AIR), I’m confident others are looking for an alternative.
So stop complaining about Muse, it wasn’t built for you, it doesn’t affect you, and although Adobe has changed (despite it once being about the music), it doesn’t matter.
2 responses to “Reality check: Why Adobe Muse doesn’t matter.”
We’ve been fishing around the SquareSpace and Muse. We hire out for large web work but find there’s a need for a web dev tool that can be used internally (despite the limitations) for smaller jobs.
You’re right. There are a pile of dev sites that automate the bulk of code work. For a couple of years — years ago — we used NetObjects (ouch), which was painfully similar to Muse.
So, if you HAD to choose, what would you choose for serviceable sites?
That’s a really good question. Although I decry the usefulness of SquareSpace here, there product is actually very good for people who need to quickly turn around sites. But in reality there’s no substitute for having someone on hand who knows how to make a site, and HTML/CSS themselves aren’t that hard to learn, so maybe that’s the route to go down?