Jeff Chandler over at WPTavern.com recently published an interview with Andrew Ozz. Andrew is the man responsible for the integration of TinyMCE into WordPress. He’s also a core committer for the WordPress project. In his interview, Jeff asked a number of questions that I believe are on the minds of many who have used the visual editor. Here is an example:
Jeff – TinyMCE is labeled as a WYSIWYG editor. However, in my experience most times what I see is not what I get. For example, I’ll be in the visual editor and block quote a piece of text. But when I press enter to begin a new line, my cursor is stuck within the blockquote tag. This also works for any other styling elements as well. Why is that? I think the WYSIWYG a.k.a. RTE (rich text editor) comes from the early implementation of support for editing in the browsers. So it’s a dynamically displayed html (WYSIWYG) as opposite to typing html code in a textarea. That was before CSS was adopted so all formatting was in the html code. There are three types of buttons in TinyMCE. One brings up a popup, the other affects selected text only and the third acts as a toggle switch. The blockquote button is of the third type. It can also act on selected text like the align buttons. The toggle can be turned on at the beginning of the blockquote then turned off on the next paragraph after the blockquote, the same way as in Writer and Word. Alternatively a blockquote can be applied to one or more paragraphs after they are written.
The one thing worth taking from this interview is that, when something goes awry in the visual editor, it’s not always the fault of TinyMCE, but rather the browsers.