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View Source on non-cty sites

When I use IE 6 to view source using City Desk on a non-city Desk site, I get a message "City Desk can't tell where the HTML page came from" and then it launches a new instance of city desk (complete with the 4-option screen that I admitted some distaste for in a previous message.)

So what gives?  I think it is odd that an HTML CMS system can't open an HTML file.  It seems that this is intentional as there is no way to open an HTML file, but users can insert one.

Is this a mistake?  Wasn't the web built on "View Source" to at least learn how some formatting was done?

I see how when I CityDesk site is view-sourced the power of being back in the editor, but is there another way to accomplish this?  I would rather have a CityDesk IE plug-in that accomplishes CityDesk site specific editing than confusing the view source option.


Tim Randolph
Wednesday, November 14, 2001

View Source, and Edit with CityDesk are different beasts.  I think you are talking about the Edit with CityDesk feature.  View source just opens the source in notepad.

If you publish your site to an ftp server and then realize you have a typo, you can choose edit with citydesk and it will open your database and let you edit the file.  But notice that the file on the web site and the file in your .cty file are not the same file - one sits on a unix/nt/mac server and one is inside a .cty file on your desktop.

You are trying to 'Edit' non-Citydesk files in Citydesk, which isn't really the correct verb.  If you want to insert an html file into your site, you can do that and you know how... But if the file doesn't exist in your citydesk site then we would have to assume that when you choose Edit, you mean Insert and then Edit, which could be valid, but here is an example where it isn't.

Let's say you have an .asp file in your citydesk site.  It says <%Response.Write "hi"%>
So you publish and look at it in your browser.  Viewing source on that page says only the word "hi".  And if you edit with frontpage you are editing the "hi" page.  Its not clear whether the user wants to edit the result page with just the word hi, or the ASP file with <%...%>.  The only way to do this is by putting some token in the HTML so you know to edit the original and not the result (you can't reliably do this with ASP files, but you can with HTML files).

Anyway, long story short, this behaviour is best done with "View->Import Web Page" inside CityDesk.  Then its clear what you want to do...

Michael Pryor
Wednesday, November 14, 2001

My bad.

I had mapped a toolbar icon for what I thought was view source on IE. In the past it had just popped up pages in Notepad.  After the Citydesk install, I get "Edit with with CityDesk" as the first option and "Edit with Notepad" as the second.  Menu View/Source still gives the expected results.

Of course, I have no idea how to get the "Edit" action from the menu, but I don't think that should be Fog Creek's concern.


Tim Randolph
Wednesday, November 14, 2001

This seems awfully complicated. In usability tests do people use the "Edit with CityDesk" command correctly? I would think that the more correct thing would be to pop up a message that says "This file was not created by CityDesk" or something like that (or put in a dynamic menu that only shows up on a CityDesk page) otherwise it doesn't seem to do what I would have thought.

Rob Schlaff
Friday, November 16, 2001

Good idea, we'll change the message to have it make more sense.

Joel Spolsky
Friday, November 16, 2001

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