Good News Bad News

Well, now you can embed a real text editor in your browser’s textarea widget. Too bad it’s vi. Since it’s a linux system, I guess the obvious choice is emacs. But then you don’t embed emacs in things, you embed things in emacs.

I remember seeing this ca. 1996, with OpenDoc. Laugh if you will, but I seem to remember using WaV (a word processor, just found the cd again.) in Cyberdog (the browser at the time). Then again, I also remember having a document that was mainly word processing with multiple live instances of web browsers in it. 5 or 10 years from now, OpenDoc will be back. It won’t be called OpenDoc, and it probably won’t run in 4 megs of memory, but it will be there.

I actually liked OpenDoc. It made some sense to me. But then again, I learned a long time ago, asking “Do I think this is cool?” does not count as a market survey. Come to think of it, that question is actually more likely to predict market failure.

OpenDoc’s failure was to be a year or two ahead of Hotmail, which I think was the first webapp to really drive people to editing text in a textarea. In OpenDoc’s time, people asked “Why would I want to embed a text editing widget in a document?”. Now people are looking for better text editors for that very thing. Of course OpenDoc had other problems, the main one being that it was supposed to be at the core of everything.

But while editing this on my linux box, I’m thinking that emacs would be real nice right about now. Even WaV.

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