Adobe Systems has released a public beta of its "Muse" software that enables graphic designers to design and publish professional-quality HTML Websites without writing code or working within restrictive templates.
Muse leverages the latest Web standards, including HTML5 and CSS3, where browser support exists. Muse also combines design and creative freedom with frameworks for adding navigation, widgets and HTML to include advanced interactivity on a site, Adobe officials said
"The ability to build websites as easily as laying out a page in InDesign is one of the most popular requests from our design customers," said Lea Hickman, vice president of Design and Web product management at Adobe, in a statement. "Those who have tested Muse are thrilled that something this intuitive yet powerful is now available."
Designers are invited to learn more about Muse by visiting http://muse.adobe.com, where they can download the free beta (English only), see a gallery of Muse-created Websites and access instructional tutorials.
Muse features easy-to-use sitemaps, master pages, and a host of flexible, sitewide tools make it fast and intuitive to plan the Website layout. Also with Muse, designers can combine imagery, graphics and text with complete control, flexibility and power, similar to the functionality in Adobe InDesign. Muse provides drag-and-drop customizable widgets like navigation menus. And users can add fully customizable interactive elements including slideshows, Tooltips and remote rollovers.
Adobe said Muse also embeds HTML code snippets from sources including Google Maps, YouTube and Facebook. In addition, Muse allows for the creation of Adobe-hosted trial sites for testing and review purposes. A site can be sent to clients, converted to a paid Adobe-hosted site or exported for FTP to other hosting providers.
"Where has this been all of my Web life?" asked David Lloyd, owner of David Lloyd Imageworks, a design and photography business for creative business solutions. "Seriously, this is the first Web design tool that lets me go back to being a designer and mostly stay in the creative head while still producing Websites." Visit David Lloyd's Muse site at www.greenartisans.com.
In a March 25 blog post on Muse, Cynthia Passanante, a design director for a digital advertising agency in New York, said:
""This is not Adobe's first foray into web-output technology. Their present iteration, Dreamweaver, has been touted as their WYSIWYG alternative to full-on code manipulation for quite some time. But even this software relies heavily on programming to bolster what can only be described as a clunky visual interface. What Muse is suggesting it will be able to do blows this right out of the water.""