I was going to do an evaluation of an authoring tool, but the WAI have thought of it already at www.w3.org/WAI/AU/2002/tools.
I found that the reviews were all a little outdated and I didn’t get a definite conclusion from any review. So I finally decided to go ahead and check out an authoring tool myself. I went for the markup editor developed in collaboration with the W3C, Amaya. It’s a WYSIWYG editor/browser. Many distributions are available. I will be looking at the Windows one.
I opened an existing file that I know is made to standard and it came out all distorted. I then created a page from scratch. I must admit that I’m not used to any kind of authoring tool. I have been using Notepad++ for a while. So it was a little strange. At first it took me some time to get used to the application itself, but after a while of playing with it, it was fairly simple to use. I did a trivial page with a menu, an unordered list, a form and an image.
Page done with Amaya
Formatting done to some text resulted in inlining style, there were extra open and close paragraphs, inserting the image required to enter an alternative text, and as for the other elements they were pretty intuitive.
It’s clear that you still need to know some basic concepts in web standards to make any web page complaint or accessible. This tool might be good for someone just starting, but I think I’ll just stay with my simple text editor.