WYSIWYG, "What You See is What You Get," was originally used in the early days of word processing software to indicate the way in which a document would appear on-screen or in print. Pre-WYSIWYG word processing applications relied on different "modes" for various actions, such as editing and viewing. At that time, you couldn't "see" exactly the way a document would look until you printed it or viewed it (outside of edit mode). With the creation of WYSIWYG word processors, users could see exactly the way a document would look on-screen or in print while editing it.
Today, the term is used frequently on the Internet for special text editors that provide rich editing functionality, used in creating Web sites, online email messages, and the like.
Some examples include:
- Microsoft Word
- Macromedia Dreamweaver
The introduction of the WYSIWYG editor was a major milestone in the word processing industry.
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