Text Editors are used all over the place in Joomla. You use them to:

  • Create the content for an Article or a Category desription
  • Create the content for Custom HTML Modules
  • 3rd Party Extension Component Content
  • Content for any other applications

What the user needs to realize with text editors is that they are somewhat like word processing software, but they are NOT word processing software.  Text Editors are taking your input and putting it into an HTML format for web browsers to read and display. If you toggle the editor, you will see nothing but HTML which is the tags that the editor created with the content that you entered along with the words and paths to your images.

What you see in a Text Editor may not look like the content looks like on the actual web page.

HTML, HyperText Markup Language, has been around since the dawn of the internet.  It was created as a language that browsers interprtet to display web pages.  In those days, web pages were mostly text and very simple.  The internet has evolved into a much more complex entity, but the basics for HTML are still the underlying framework for a web page.

HTML breaks the elements of a web page into tags.  These tags include headings, paragraph text, links, images, and sections of the page, and meta tags that go into the <head> section for instructions to the browser.  There are also many other types of tags for other items and sections of your web page.

Text Editors do a lot of things automatically as they are interpreting your input. Sometimes they are doing things in the background that make things appear on your page that maybe are not to your liking.  They can be frustrating to use.  It helps to know some basics about HTML markup language so that you can toggle the editor to the view with the HTML tags so that you can troubleshoot problems with the page.

Tiny MCE

The default Text Editor that comes with a Joomla 3 installation is Tiny MCE.  It is a very basic Text Editor that doesn't have a lot of bells and whistles.  It doesn't have many of the powerful tools that 3rd party text editors may have. It also can restrict your users to using only the most basic HTML tools - which may not be a bad thing. For a power user or an administrator, it is best to install a 3rd party text editor like JCE Editor.

Click here for the joom3 article on the basic HTML tags that you should know if you are creating content for the internet.