Are we to expect another update to the beta anytime soon? I think it’s been about 6 months since the last one…
Yes, we’re planning to release a new beta (b5) in the next week or so. The main addition is master pages. These offer significant improvements on Freeway master pages. It’s also easy to convert template pages (in old documents) into master pages: 1. Drag the template page into the Master Pages folder, 2. Choose this as the master page for site pages. It takes about a minute to convert the sample documents on our website. We’ve also updated the tutorial so that it uses master pages rather than template pages.
Is there any news about when X-Way might import Freeway projects. I have been holding off rebuilding my website until existing sites can be imported. Will the new beta help in the conversion?
There is a great deal on Rapidweaver at the moment and given that I think I have basic pages on skuce.co.uk and that all my gallery pages are created within Lightroom I am tempted to try it.
Importing content from Freeway documents is on our to-do list, but we’ve been concentrating on core Xway functionality. There are a number of issues that we will have to deal with when we do add Freeway import. Most Freeway documents (including all Freeway Express documents) use table layout, which is inflexible and inaccessible. By contrast, Xway is designed to create modern flexible websites that will display on mobile devices as well as desktops. Later versions of Freeway Pro (6 and 7) could be used to create flexible CSS websites, but Freeway wasn’t originally designed to do this, and it isn’t easy unless you start from a flexible template. It’s also possible to use breakpoints (in Freeway 7) to create multiple layouts that are inflexible but which do work at different screen widths.
If you’re willing to redesign a website to use flexible CSS layout—which is worth doing in itself—it’s not too difficult to import content from a Freeway document or from a browser. Text can be copied from a browser or from a Freeway document, and images etc. can be copied from a browser or the original files can be reimported. There is an appendix in the Xway User Guide that contains advice on doing this.
In the long run, we do plan to add functionality that will import Freeway content (text, images, etc.), and hopefully preserve CSS layouts where these have been used.