I am a big fan of wysiwyg (what you see is what you get) editors in programs. I also like html and like to design web pages. I know when I first started out learning web design, I just wanted to dive into the design part and not worry about the code (but it’s good to know the code too if you are serious about being a web designer). Enter Roxer and Google Pages. Both these web applications use wysiwyg editors to the point where you can say: forget code! Want to throw up a web page that has a professional look and design in a matter of minutes? Then these tools are for you. Both have their pro’s and con’s, so choose which tools works for you. Lets take a look at the pros and cons of each application:

 Google Pages

Pros

-If you already have a Google account, your already have access to Google Pages, there’s no need to sign up for a new account.
-You can edit the HTML.  If you would like to have a little more control over the html of the page, you can edit the design through editing the internal CSS and HTML. This is great for advance users
-Tracks revisions (like Google Docs)
-You can choose to make the page public or not (for editing purposes) and you can un-publish pages
-Page is hosted by Google
-Free and you have a 100MB limit to upload items to your webpage (images,etc)
-You can add gadgets (clocks, games, videos, etc)

Cons

-Designs are limiting for advanced users-layouts for columns, moving items around, etc
-Not that intuitive for very very basic beginners
-Really need to understand some HTML to get features like videos and  podcasts to work on your page (advanced users-check out this site to get started w/ videos and podcasts: http://mbradyie.googlepages.com/add_videos_and_mp3.html )

Roxer 

Pros

-Great for very basic beginners
-Drag and drop editing (you can edit almost anything and move anything  on the page)
-Very easy user interface
-Wizards built in to walk you through how to add and edit your page
-Free hosting
-Free to use
-Add a YouTube Video player to play videos

 Cons

-Have to sign up for account
-No history of revisions-if you navigate away from page without locking it (saving it) you will loose every change you made for that page
-Can not edit the HTML (create more possibilities in design and content)
-Can not embed a video from another source other than YouTube.

My conclusion is that both these tools are great for designing a quick and professionally designed web page without knowledge of HTML coding. I would recommend very basic users to start with Roxer and more advanced users to use Google Pages (because of the ability to edit the code).  Roxer might build editing the HTML into their interface later down the road (Roxer is Beta). Try both and see which one works for you. Enjoy!

Here’s my test pages:

Google Pages:  http://angelb81.googlepages.com/home
Roxer Page: http://angelb.roxer.com/

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