Lasso was designed to be part text editor, part story builder. A lot of focus was placed on the writing experience of Lasso, as I really feel that everything else (media) is secondary to this.
For that reason, Aesop Story Engine is completely optional, and not required by Lasso in order to work. For those not familiar, Aesop Story Engine is a free plugin that we released back in December of 2013, now approaching close to 25K downloads. The original goal of Lasso (previously coined Aesop Story Editor) was to make Aesop Story Engine easier to use by making things 100% visual. However as development continued, we started to realize that it could do much, much more.
That day our editor, became something more. A completely stand alone plugin on it’s own. It corals your text, and your ancillary media, and fuses them into a new and visually interactive editing experience.
[aesop_image lightbox=”off” captionposition=”left” caption=”Without Aesop Story Engine activated, Lasso is just a front-end text editor.” align=”center” imgwidth=”800px” img=”https://lasso.is/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/lasso-without-aesop.png”]
Without Aesop Story Engine active, you won’t see the additional “+” icon that allows story components to be dragged into your post. The size of the toolbar will adjust accordingly, and you’ll be able to use Lasso as a front-end editor on it’s own.
However when Aesop Story Engine is active, a “+” icon is added to the toolbar, which allows you to drag story components into your story. From here, each story components settings can be adjusted in real-time, from the front-end of your story. Resizing images and their positions, adding maps, and quote component customizations are all done right before your eyes. These components are then able to be dragged around within your story.
[aesop_image lightbox=”off” captionposition=”left” caption=”Lasso becomes a story builder with Aesop Story Engine activated.” align=”center” imgwidth=”800px” img=”https://lasso.is/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/lasso-with-aesop.png”]
All Aesop Story Engine components are supported. The Gallery component requires a couple page refreshes when uploading new images, or changing layouts, and we hope to smooth this process out as time goes on. With Lasso and Aesop Story Engine, you can weave interactive stories without using any code at all, with an intuitive and highly visual front-end interface.
We can’t wait to see what you think of Lasso! I’m confident that the amount of time Lasso will save you will really contribute to making you a better writer. A bold claim? I guess you’ll have to purchase it when it’s released on March 23rd to decide for yourself.