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"Goodbye, Jean-Luc, I'm gonna miss you. You had such potential. But then again, all good things must come to an end."
- Q, Star Trek: TNG

Comparing TinyMCE and CKEditor

by Ken Newquist / July 23, 2008

TinyMCE and CKEditor (formerly FCKeditor) are two of the most popular open source WYSIWYG editors for web applications. I'm researching which would be the best to implement at the day job on a campus-wide basis; ideally I'd like to pick one editor, and then use it with all of our web apps. Here's a run down of what editors are available for what apps:

Web App TinyMCE CKEditor
Drupal
Yes (but beta)
Mediawiki
No (ext. abandoned)
Moodle
No (in development)
No (in
development)
Wordpress
Yes (default)

In doing my research, I found a few WYSIWYG editor comparisons:

I polled Twitter as well, and got three responses in favor of using CKEditor over TinyMCE, mostly because of ease of use. Unfortunately, my comparisons didn't yield any easy answers. WordPress defaults to TinyMCE, and if we go with WordPress Mu on campus, that could end up being our single biggest use of a WYSIWYG editor. Moodle is currently using HTMLArea, which is no longer in development. They're replacing it with a modular system in Moodle 2 that lets you choose between whatever editor you want (including TinyMCE and CKEditor) so I'm not too concerned about that. The lack of support for TinyMCE in Mediawiki is troublesome; there is an extension for it, but it's been abandoned by the developer. CKEditor support is much better.

We don't need to rush into a decision here, so I think my next step will be to setup TinyMCE and CKEditor on test instances of Drupal and see how well they work and play with the CSS, how well their code validates, and how they deal with cutting and pasting text from various word processors. I'm also going to install CKEditor on Nuketown and see how well I like using it on a day-to-day basis.

If anyone has any suggestions regarding these editors, I'd love to hear them.