Depends on the Developer API of BlocsApp.
Yes I think we are all waiting to see what can be done there and no doubt developers such as yourself can provide feedback. For me a crucial point will be maintaining overall performance with any changes, so it doesn’t grind to a crawl like RW on page previews etc.
Been following Blocs is 1. As said in the other feed - in my books has a way to go (in terms of real world acceptance). But I watch with enthusiasm and if it betters my current tools - then hello Blocs!!!
Blocs 3 is absolutely amazing. I moved over from RW and it’s so much better. I can load and export my entire site in 2 seconds and can preview my page in the same time.
In RW, it hit the preview button, go make a coffee, come back and wait for it to finish.
I still like RW however and still use Joe’s total blog CMS within my Blocs site.
I wish Joe would work with Norm and make a CMS, it would be incredibly popular.
PS not meant to bash RW, love the platform, but think Blocs 3 is better for workflow and consistency 😃
If CMS was a requirement,
I would definitely be going with one of the many WP options out.
@ashleykaryl, thank you for mentioning circleCMS. In a first version, adding/managing pages will not be possible, but this is planned for a later version.
I like the faster reaction time of Blocs, Rapidweaver is really very slow on my 15" late 2016 Macbook Pro. Rapidweaver has until now the better API, but Norm ( The main developer behind Blocs) is working on it, to improve it. If enough people are asking a thing, Norm is implementing it. It is at least how I perceived it.
Rapidweaver has a really good eco system with many developers, so as website creator, there exists more out of the box solutions. Personally I prefer Blocs because it makes more fun working with it, and can manage fonts better out of the box. for me, fonts are a main part of any design.
Mac mini website - RW recreation
For anyone not familiar with the quality and complexity of sites created with Blocs, here is a really impressive demo created by the Blocs Template Master, Eldar, demonstrating some of what Blocs3 can do at https://eldargezalov.com/i/templates/preview/macintosh/ . There is also a video - https://youtu.be/KNk4I_Omxa8
Even more impressive when you realise it is all done with just the core Blocs3 App and no addons and no code.
Now I’m not saying that RW can’t create this too, but it would also need Stacks, a framework such as Foundry or Foundation in addition to going deep into the BWD stacks magic bag.
Edit corrected Eldar’s name spelling.
Original iPad Pro website recreation (old news)
I disagree completely on this. The page is a lovely copy of the Mac Mini page but there are really only two design elements used (a) A reveal animation on scroll and (b) fixed background images. The rest is just well executed colours, graphics, typography etc.
There is also the tabs under the title " To the desktop. And beyond.", some nice graduated BG’s, local fonts and multi size text in a free form layout. In addition there is also the ease of recreating the padding and margins, text size, etc., to match the same look and you need speed and WYSIWYG to do this in a reasonable time.
So I would say all of that does make it a somewhat complex layout with plenty of difficult stuff in the details. That scroll reveal for the airflow is really cool and would be a big challenge for most RW users with every available stack and framework to duplicate. (I know you can do it your sleep)
My point is that the core RW App does not come close to anything like this. Add stacks and it still doesn’t get close.
For sure it is the images, layout, colours, etc that are the standout here but creating that page is a good demo of how powerful the tool is.
I am far from an apologist for anyone or any app but in RW’s defence, the vast majority of users are not like the people here. There are 10’s of thousands of users who don’t use stacks but simply use RW styled text and built in pages to make simple personal sites.
In this respect, RW is unmatched - you don’t need a framework or lots of bloated code that is not used by the page and is remarkably quick and simple for amateurs to use without the daunting aspects of starting from a blank page.
It really makes me laugh when I see people extolling the virtues of frameworks in the context of either app. Bootstrap, Foundation or anything else when just dumped on the page will use about 10% of the code bas added. There is no opportunity for a custom build to only add the components that are used as would be done when using a framework normally.
Stacks has expanded the reach of RW into the semi professional / small site designer of the past 10 years and arguably has been the only practical static generator app for people to run a website business without the technical knowledge to make websites.
Blocs has started from a blank canvas and adopted a different approach, it benefits from being less flexible (for example tied to Bootstrap) and from having (and needing) a much reduced API compared to RW. The API is very new and is being constantly improved but it is still far from being capable of what can be done with Stacks which I think @inStacks-Jannis eluded to above.
Competition is good and we can be sure that Blocs and Stacks will continue to advance and serve their markets.
As for users who are running a business based on these products, just remember that they are both essentially one man band small businesses with a necessarily unpredictable future. If your income is linked to any such business I would urge you to spread the risk as widely as possible.
Is anyone going to mention the elephant in the room?
A good point, but also worth remembering that Adobe is considerably larger and has a track record of leaving customers up the creek without a paddle. Muse, GoLive, PageMill…
I think (know) the point is don’t base your trust on the size of the company, but spread your workload across several platforms. So, if one goes tits up you already “know” another and can swap to it.
For my part, RW and RM worry me greatly. The product is fantastic. Yes, it’s got it’s issues, but everything does, there are no perfects out there. I can live with the imperfections of RW, but it’s getting hard to look past RM. Putting my own views on their long term viability to one side, RM seems to prefer to operate and treat their users on a “need to know” basis, and what they consider we “need to know” falls way short IMO. This isn’t based on the recent 8.1.x debacle but goes back a way way, to way before my banning from their forum. Perhaps incorrect or unfair, but it feels like a streak of pure arrogance runs deep in the company. To my eyes it often feels like they hold their partners (other devs) and even their users on occasion in contempt. This is not healthy.
I think you have just made a good case for taking a close look at Blocs, if nothing else to give yourself a backup option. I have both apps installed and could use either as needed.
Tav makes perfect sense when arguing we should never be wholly dependent on one product alone and I would extend that CMS solutions as well. To an extent though, I feel RW is even more vulnerable, since it also relies to a far greater degree on third party plugins over which they have virtually no control.
Yes, and no. The fact that many devs make their living or supplement their income from RW is actually an insurance policy to an extent.
If RM went tits up there are an awful lot of very talented people out there who could very quickly pull together to produce an alternative platform that will support existing projects and their stacks. Or failing that, raise the funds to buy RW from the administrators.
The fact that there is a third party product that sits between RW and stacks (Stacks) adds complexity to the system but also means there is already the makings of a replacement platform in existence.
Blocs looks fantastic, but for me, it will never be an option, not for commercial use anyway. It’s not that it’s not up to the job, it will be, it’s just that it fails the “what happens if the dev falls under a bus” rule.
If Dan falls under said bus, RW will continue, partly for reasons outlined above. If Norm falls under it, Blocs is dead.
I should say that I don’t want anyone to fall under a bus!
And, having read back my comments, I should say that I 100% support RM and RW. i buy every upgrade of RW regardless of whether I plan to use it or not, as I want to support them. I do give RM a really hard time, but it’s based on a passion for their product not a desire to do/see/cause them harm. Rm has enough people telling them what they want to hear, it’s important people tell the truth too, no matter how brutal it comes across.
Come on, you’d piss yourself laughing if I went under a bus.
Sorry, I mean I don’t want anyone to fall under a bus, 'cept Tav, cus that would be funny.
Caveat: He can’t die, or fall under said bus til ML is ready.
@tav I hope I wasn’t extolling the virtues of frameworks and that’s a whole other conversation, but only mentioned the Stacks extensions required to build a site like the one above. I hate frameworks probably 1% as much as you do, but I am perfectly happy with Bootstrap4 with what it has built in, how frequently is is being updated and how it is about the same size in kb as a pretty page wide image.
RW certainly has had a strong past and for the type of users you mention it remains an excellent solution. I absolutely agree about what Stacks has done for RW and it is certainly possible to build a complex site in RW + Stacks + more stuff $$$.
My comments about the demo site created above were just to illustrate what the core $99 Blocs3 app can do, and I doubt there is anything else for $99 that can do the same.
You have hit the rusty nail firmly on the head. That’s exactly my driver here and has been since RW7 was released with very little IMHO added apart from PHP capability. That was over 3 years ago and I have yet to see anything interesting happen. I won’t mention all the other products that RM have dropped but that too is a warning bell. RW has further dependabilities such as Isaiah, YOU and a handful of others. I really hope you don’t all get on a single engined plane together.
RW is like an Achilles animal with multiple heals. The strength of RW is it’s weakness because the solution has multiple dependencies. We see this often when RW8 Release Candidate 9001 crashes when a user has SiteMap, or PlusKit or DonkeyKong or whatever installed. Far from me to suggest to RM that they actually test RW8 with PlusKit, etc…
If you currently own RW7, Stacks, etc. then RW7 + Stacks with a full tool bag is without doubt, the best flexible, stable, powerful solution today, but for the stuff that does not need that top end complexity, i.e. bread and butter web site creation, Blocs3 is very capable and much more productive.
So I see Blocs as the most rapidly developing and best implemented hope in the next 12-24 months that we have for the type of sites that RW/Stacks users currently build. I really wish I could make a long list of the amazing stuff added to RW, the speed increases, WYSIWYG, etc that has happened in the last 3 years.
We really need a Venn diagram showing were RW+Stacks+stack and Blocs3 overlap. Currently RW can create more complex sites and that’s down to Stacks and stacks devs (YOU many). However, Blocs3 currently overlaps a large part of that RW area and is growing fast and when the API is mature, that’s were the interesting developments will be.
The virus was certainly already extolled before… ;-)
Interesting thread. Good we have here a forum where we can speak openly about this 😃
Edit: And people not getting under a bus 😉