Beta Testing Scout

Well, as much as I’d love to procrastinate for the rest of eternity, the time has come for Scout to take it’s first baby steps out of it’s private testing ground and out to a few interested folks who would be brave enough to beta test.

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I’m honestly very happy with how Scout is turning out so far. It seems very stable, and now that I’ve worked out a few annoying bugs it is as easy to use as I’d hoped. Here is a quick rundown of supported features:

  • Markdown Editing - Scout is built for Markdown.
  • Post Previews - The post is rendered into the chosen theme, so what you see in the preview should be exactly what you see when published online.
  • Media Manager - A nice grid of the pictures Scout knows about.
  • In-line Image Preview - Speaking of images Scout knows about, dragging and dropping an image onto the text editor will create the markdown code for inserting the image in the post, and clicking on the text will show a pop-up preview of the image.
  • Themes - Scout supports a very easy theming model that I’m hoping will attract web designers.
  • Text Editor Themes - A few nice built-in themes. I generally use Solarized Light.
  • A Very Nice Full Screen Editor - Where I spend all my time in Scout.

Since I’m shooting for 1.0 here, there are a couple of features that I’ve intentionally left out because they were simply not there yet.

For one, no syncing support just yet. I have the inner structure to support syncing over Dropbox, or any other form of file syncing, but in practice it is a bit janky, so it will not be supported in 1.0.

Secondly, Scout will only publish to a folder on your hard drive. It will not publish to the web. I’m working on integration with Site44, but as with syncing support, it’s just not quite polished enough to include in the 1.0. With that being said, I’m hosting this site with Scout and Site44, I just choose the Site44 folder with the publish file picker. Works well, but could be smoother. Maybe that’s a 1.1 or 1.2 enhancement.

Anyway, I would be grateful if you would beta test Scout for me. If you are interested, drop me a line on twitter. I’ll get right back to you.