Wednesday, July 21, 2004

MacJournal Status

What's going on with MacJournal right now? There are a few areas to cover here.


This is the biggest block to ship right now. There are two critical localizations missing in action: Spanish and French. At this point it is looking like 2.6 will have to ship without them. They'll be picked up later on I guess. If you can help out localizing 2.6 into these two languages please contact me immediately.


Depending on what you are doing, you may have experienced a crash seemingly at random. This is actually the background saving that is crashing. Unfortunately for everyone MacJournal isn't crashing in its own code (which would be fixable), but rather in code provided by the operating system (which is not fixable). For those that are interested: NSAttributedString + attachments + NSKeyedArchiver + NSThread = . The options are either ship with this crasher (which seems to only attack a small amount of people), or change the data format to store the data in a different way that won't crash. I'm currently weighing these two options, but I'm leaning toward the latter: application and data stability is more important than being able to open your 2.6 data on 2.5. 2.6 carries the same requirements as 2.5, so everyone should use 2.6 after it comes out (or now really). Besides, I already kind of changed the format by changing how checkboxes are stored.


I know I said it might not happen, but it looks like there will definitely be a beta 4. Technically it's probably Final Candidate 1, but I thought I'd keep things simple for this release. You can see what's on the plate for beta 4 in the usual place. I guess there's technically a new feature or two in it, but it's something that should have been there in the first place: you can now delete locked journals by providing an administrator password for the system. So if you don't want your kids deleting your important data, don't give them admin accounts!

Localizations notwithstanding, I'd like to ship 2.6 next week. There are a few things that need to be tied up, but I really want to get 2.6 in the hands of everyone out there.

Hidden Prefs

I've gotten a few e-mails about a posting I did earlier regarding hidden preferences in MacJournal 2.6. I have updated the post for 2.6b4 and put it at for everyone to see. I'll try to keep it updated as things change. These aren't "hidden" preferences per se; just ones that don't have any UI or any guarantee of inclusion in a future version. I'd like to come up with a better way to handle this in the future. If you've seen Quicksilver before you'll know that its preferences window actually has a button to show "Beta" or "Unstable" features and controls. What I might do for the Advanced Preferences in MacJournal is move all the checkboxes into a table and provide an option to add all the currently hidden switches. This would make it very easy to add new preferences in the future as well.

Monday, July 12, 2004

MacJournal 2.6b3 Released

This is potentially the last beta release of 2.6. This release is primarily to test out updated localizations. The following localizations have been updated:

- Korean
- Italian
- Norwegian
- Danish
- Catalan
- German
- Japanese

Here are some of the other changes:

- Fixed links to entries with forward slashes
- Greatly improved HTML exporting
- Lots of general interface improvements
- Edit the topic of the summary for the journal to change the name of that journal

Other enhancements are noted in the Version History (there are a lot of little items).

As always, install and use developmental software at your own risk! Be sure to back up your data before each new build just in case. Just for fun, MacJournal itself will back up your data with each new build that you install as well.

This is an alpha build, which means features are still in flux, as well as the interface. That means that no localization updates should take place. When the first beta comes out, the interface will be frozen for 2.6 with no exceptions this time!

Please let me know of any problems that you have with this build.

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Difficulties Posting to Blogger

About 10 days ago, Blogger seemed to change the nature of its response to 3rd party clients like MacJournal when it sends Blogger a new post. This new response is not understandable to MacJournal and throws up an error on your screen whenever you try and send a post. Sometimes it seems that the post actually makes it through, but you always get an error back. The error message is "Error receiving response" and if you open up Console you'll get a bunch of XML code with "The server did not return a 'text/xml' response." in there somewhere. Originally I thought this was MacJournal's problem, but it seems other Mac OS X blogging clients are experiencing the same difficulties. There is a post in ecto's forum that shows the same behavior. The maker of ecto responded with a link to a preview post about Atom support, but the original posting refers to the Blogger API, which is what MacJournal uses. So, long story short: it seems that Blogger has done something to make the Blogger 1.0 API incompatible with Mac OS X for now. I will be contacting their support channels to see if I can get any word on when this will be fixed.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Beta 3 is coming soon

Beta 3 will be out sometime this weekend. A lot of little things have been improved and I hope this will be the last beta before final ship. Many localizations have been updated, but we're still missing a few key ones that will potentially delay the final release. MacJournal 2.6 will be released this month though, localizations or not. We can pick up additionaly localizations after the final release as they don't require any change to the actual code. The other big improvement in beta 3 beside localizations is the HTML exporting, which I talked about in a previous post here. Further improvements have been made since then and it's looking even better. I've tried it out in a lot of situations and everything comes out looking good and validates with the World Wide Web standards group (W3C). Other than that, there have been a lot of small improvements to a lot of different places. Look for the release soon.