Nytimes Ice Save

track changes with javascript

Project README


Ice is a track changes implementation, built in javascript, for anything that is contenteditable on the web. Conceived by the CMS Group at The New York Times, ice is powering the editor used for writing articles in the newsroom.


Try it




  • Track multi-user inserts and deletes with the option to turn on and off tracking or highlighting.
  • A robust API to accept and reject changes, get clean content, and add a lot of configuration.
  • Plugins for tinymce and wordpress.
  • Optional plugins to track copy-cut-pasting, convert smart quotes, and create em-dashes.

Get Started

Contenteditable initialization - If you are comfortable with maintaining your own text editing utilities, then you can initialize ice on any block element:

     var tracker = new ice.InlineChangeEditor({
       // element to track - ice will make it contenteditable
       element: document.getElementById('mytextelement'),
       // tell ice to setup/handle events on the `element`
       handleEvents: true,
       // set a user object to associate with each change
       currentUser: { id: 1, name: 'Miss T' }
     // setup and start event handling for track changes

Additional options:

     var tracker = new ice.InlineChangeEditor({
       element: document.getElementById('mytextelement'),
       handleEvents: true,
       currentUser: { id: 1, name: 'Miss T' },
       // optional plugins
       plugins: [
         // Add title attributes to changes for hover info
         // Two successively typed dashes get converted into an em-dash
         // Track content that is cut and pasted
           name: 'IceCopyPastePlugin',
           settings: {
             // List of tags and attributes to preserve when cleaning a paste
             preserve: 'p,a[href],span[id,class]em,strong'

Useful utilities in the API:

acceptChange, rejectChange

     // Accept/Reject the change at the current range/cursor position or at the given `optionalNode`

acceptAll, rejectAll

     // Accept/Reject all of the changes in the editable region.


     // Returns a clean version, without tracking tags, of the content in the editable element or
     // out of the optional `body` param. After cleaning, the `optionalCallback` param is called
     // which should further modify and return the body.
     tracker.getCleanContent(optionalBody, optionalCallback);


     // Set the desired user to track. A user object has the following properties: { `id`, `name` }.
     tracker.setCurrentUser({id: 2, name: 'Miss T'});


     // Get the internal list of change objects which are modeled from all of the change tracking
     // nodes in the DOM. This might be useful to add a more sophisticated change tracking UI/UX.
     // The list is key'ed with the unique change ids (`cid attribute`) and points to an object
     // with metadata for a change: [changeid] => {`type`, `time`, `userid`, `username`}
     var changes = tracker.getChanges();

Tinymce initialization - Add the ice plugin to your tinymce plugins directory and include the following in your tinymce init:

        plugins: 'ice',
        theme_advanced_buttons1: 'ice_togglechanges,ice_toggleshowchanges,iceacceptall,icerejectall,iceaccept,icereject',
        ice: {
          user: { name: 'Miss T', id: 1},
          preserveOnPaste: 'p,a[href],i,em,strong',
          // Optional param - defaults to the css found in the plugin directory
          css: 'http://example.com/custom.css'


  • ice needs to be initialized after the DOM ready event fires.
  • Wordpress support is limited. We need contribution from any willing WordPress developers.
  • Browser support is limited to Firefox (5+) and Webkit browsers, and minimal support for IE8+.



  • Fixes bug where Webkit browsers were throwing errors when the letter "v" was pressed.


  • Fixes cut, copy, paste for Firefox and Webkit browsers.
  • Fixes delete tracking in webkit browsers.


GPL 2.0

Open Source Agenda is not affiliated with "Nytimes Ice" Project. README Source: nytimes/ice
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Last Commit
9 months ago

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