Choosing a Rich Text Editor for your Meteor App

Testing and selecting a free or paid Rich Text Editor can be a guessing game about how many issues you and your users are willing to put up with. When it came time to develop our Meteor app, we tried some familiar (Tiny, CK, etc.) and not so familiar options, but in the end, it came down to just two.

Our checklist seemed simple:

  • Javascript
  • Lightweight
  • API / Plugin ready
  • Mobile friendly(ish)

(Note: mobile RTE is a tall order right now – don’t expect perfection yet)

Quill Editor

We’re very impressed with where Quill is headed, but it currently wraps text in <div> instead of <p> and that was a deal breaker for our app. However, with Modules like Authorship and Multiple Cursors we really like where Quill is headed and decided to give it a bit more time (currently at version 0.2).
http://quilljs.com

Redactor Text Editor

For Meteor, your search can likely start and end here. It’s not free (around $100 for a single license), but installing was a breeze (zero package dependency – just drop it into your client js directory). A new version 2 just came out which, perhaps most notably, switches the prior icon based menu for plain text. For now we’re sticking to version 1, but keeping a eye on their updates and look forward to seeing what’s next for their new “future-proof interface”.
Note: 20% off until October 21, 2015
http://imperavi.com/redactor

Redactor plugins with Meteor

If you’re using Meteor and find that some plugins are working and others are not, it may be a load order issue. During testing we noticed that the Video plugin worked, while Fullscreen did not. In /client/lib our redactor js files looked like:

fullscreen.js
redactor.min.js
video.js

In this case, Meteor will load fullscreen.js before loading redactor.min.js. Simply rename your plugin redactor.plugin.fullscreen.js and you’re all set.

Google’s Closure Editor

If you don’t want a paid version, it might be worth investigating Google’s editor. For us, Redactor met about 80% of what we wanted and has been a time saving seamless drop-in for each update (we’ve updated it 4x so far).

Just getting started with Meteor?

There are several book options out now if you prefer an offline companion:

Your First Meteor Application: A Complete Beginner’s Guide to the Meteor JavaScript Framework

Meteor in Action

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