Adobe has once again updated Muse CC, its consumer-level web design application, with several new features. In this article we’ll take a look at the latest enhancements to the WYSIWYG editor and I’ll share my thoughts on them along the way.
Adobe Muse Exchange
Adobe’s exchange marketplaces have always been a popular destination for Creative Suite/Cloud users over the years. With the latest update to Muse CC, users now have access to their own Muse-centric exchange. The Muse Exchange contains several starter templates, prototyping tools, widgets, and more.
I think the idea of the exchange is great. My only hope is that it is heavily curated and that it gains traction. Depth and quality have traditionally been a problem when it comes to these ecosystems, so I really hope they start to take off and provide value to users.
Now within Muse you can collect, save, and share libraries of icons, headers, footers, styles, and grids with other designers or members of your team. This is a feature that I wish existed within all of the Adobe CC applications, frankly, and look forward to seeing how Adobe enhances it over time.
Drag & Drop Social Widgets
This update also boasts new social media widget integration, allowing users to drag and drop buttons that link to your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest profiles. In addition to these networks, they’ve also added support for Google Maps, Vimeo, and YouTube as well.
I really like these new widgets because they make it very easy for people to promote their brand/business presence on social networks without having to know any complex embed codes or how to code the buttons themselves. My only hope is that they expand the offerings to include things like Dribbble, and possibly services like Skype and GitHub.
Parallax Scrolling Enhancements
When Muse added parallax scrolling last year I wasn’t very excited about it. In fact, I thought it was a bad idea because I felt like it would make everyone “parallax crazy” and we’d have another GeoCities-esque fiasco on our hands. Even though I may not be a fan of parallax scrolling, I can honestly say the implementation of the feature in Muse is well done.
With this update you can now add opacity and fading effects to scrolling objects, plus add scroll effects to your Adobe Edge Animate content as well. Parallax can be a nice enhancement when used properly, but a little bit goes a long way, in my opinion, so please use it wisely.
This new feature is a response to the need for a more responsive experience on the web. Users are accessing our content on several different devices and screen sizes now, so it makes sense that our content should adjust to those different mediums. The new slideshow feature allows you to set a full-screen slideshow and then have it adjust its size according to the size of the browser window, whether it’s a desktop, tablet, or mobile device. This is just another step in the right direction for Muse and I hope they continue to add responsive design support throughout the app.
This is definitely a worthwhile upgrade for Muse users, and the app itself continues to get better in many ways. While I’m still not sold on it as a professional web design tool, I do think it serves its purpose very well in the consumer market, and for those people who just need to get themselves a web presence quickly and easily, it’s a perfect fit.
If you want more information about the latest update to Muse or if you would like a deep dive on how to use the app, check out this course over at lynda.com by James Fritz. Not a member of lynda.com? That’s ok, you can sign up for a free 7 day trial here. Thanks for reading!