Feeder 2.5

April 14th, 2014 by Steve Harris

Feeder IconFeeder 2.5 is now available. This version does not include any significant new features, rather its purpose is to modernise Feeder’s underpinnings to ensure compatibility with future versions of OS X, and more urgently to comply with Mac App Store rules. While no substantial functionality has changed, two notable changes are explained below.

Media File Tagging for iTunes Podcasts

How Feeder tags QuickTime movies, M4A, M4V and MP4 files with metadata such as artist name and artwork has been overhauled in this version. While there should be no noticeable difference for the first three of those file formats, MP4s lose the ability to set artwork. As Apple has moved from using artwork embedded in the files to artwork specified by links in the feed itself, this should make no noticeable difference.

Requires OS X 10.9 or Later

Because of its popularity in education establishments, etc, I have always done my best to keep Feeder working on older versions of OS X, but Apple’s pace of change in this area is making this a constant challenge. Feeder 2.4 became 10.7.3 and later to work with app sandboxing in the Mac App Store version, but 10.7.x had some bugs in this area that have made it unworkable for some people and having 10.8 as the lowest version is pretty pointless when 10.9 is a free upgrade. Therefore for Feeder to properly support sandboxing and the modernisation changes mentioned above, version 2.5 now requires OS X 10.9 or later. Versions of Feeder for older versions of OS X are always available at the bottom of the Feeder downloads page.

Pricing and Availability

Feeder 2.5 is a free upgrade for all existing 2.x users. A new license costs $39.99 direct from Reinvented Software or the Mac App Store. Upgrade and education discounts are available from the Reinvented Software store.

Together 3.1

October 28th, 2013 by Steve Harris

Together IconTogether 3.1 is out today. This version integrates with Finder tags on OS X Mavericks, improves iCloud libraries, adds Quick Open, improves the Mini Info view, supports editing info for multiple items far more elegantly and includes a load of other improvements.

OS X Mavericks

In Mavericks, it’s now possible to tag files in the Finder and all standard Save panels. Together can fully integrate with these Finder tags so you see the same tags in the Finder as in Together and vice versa.

This integration comes in the form of two options you can enable per-library in Together’s Tags preferences: one to import Finder tags and another to update them. The import option will enable one-way interaction, where Together imports the tags for all existing and subsequent items. Meanwhile, the update option will ensure that any changes made to tags in Together are reflected in the Finder and vice versa.

iCloud Libraries (Mac App Store only)

Apple made a lot of changes to iCloud in OS X Mavericks, and so Together 3.1 is essential if you want to use iCloud libraries with the latest OS. Additionally, these improvements mean Together can now safely move whole libraries to iCloud rather than import them, and creating iCloud libraries is much faster too.

Finally, whether on Mavericks or Mountain Lion, Together now asks for a new location when moving an iCloud library out of iCloud.

Quick Open

Quick Open is a new feature that can be used to quickly open (I know!) items, groups and tags by typing. Use the keystroke Command-Shift-O to show the Quick Open panel and start typing. Items are searched by name only, so the results are very quick. Use the Up and Down arrow keys to navigate between the results without leaving the search field and hit Enter to open the selection.

Multiple Info Editor

Editing Info for multiple items in Together has had its limitations in the past, but now that the Info view appears in a pop-over, it can be more flexible. When multiple items are selected, you will now see a different view that allows you to change specific values and add or replace tags.

Mini Info

The mini info view is shown above the preview and has been improved in a few ways. The Name, Comments and Tags fields now resize with their contents, links in the Comments field are now clickable and there’s a new optional Path line for showing where an original item’s file is located.

Also, the Preview menu now always has a submenu with options to show / hide the mini Info fields or the whole view. Previously, these were only available in the View Options panel.

And more…

Text editors can now use hyphenation and vertical layout, OpenMeta tags can now be synced the same way as Mavericks’ Finder tags, the Library Manager panel has made redundant by improvements to the File > Library menu and removed completely, labels now show their color in the tag browser and there are various other improvements too. See the release notes for a full list.

Together 3.1 costs $39.99 but is a free upgrade for all Together 3.0 users. Together 2.x users can upgrade for $19.99 from this site (upgrade discounts are not available for the Mac App Store). A 15-day trial version is also available from this site.

Feeder 2.4 and Sandboxing

October 2nd, 2013 by Steve Harris

Feeder iconFeeder 2.4 is now available on the web and in the Mac App Store, and includes improvements to editing, publishing and Sparkle appcasting.

However, most of the work in this release isn’t visible, which is to get Feeder working with OS X’s App Sandbox, which is a requirement for apps sold through the Mac App Store.

The App Sandbox is a security technology built into OS X that limits the way apps can access files, interact with other processes and the network.

I originally started this work back in 2011, when Apple first announced this would be a requirement for all apps distributed through the Mac App Store following the release of OS X 10.7 Lion. Unfortunately, that original implementation of sandboxing was too restrictive, and prevented many existing apps from functioning properly, so Apple postponed the requirement until improving sandboxing with OS X 10.7.3 in early 2012, and allowed existing apps to delay making the transition until a release that adds new features, so that bug fixes could be released and enhancements to OS X accommodated.

Consequently, Feeder 2.4 now requires OS X 10.7 and later, and 10.7.3 for the Mac App Store version.

Now that early problems with sandboxing have largely been ironed out, the transition should not be noticeable at all for new Feeder users, and there are no restrictions on what the app can do over the direct version beyond those imposed by the Mac App Store guidelines.

For existing users, Feeder may need to ask for permission to access files such as images, enclosure files and any linked feeds, amongst other things. This will happen automatically when you first run the Mac App Store version of Feeder, and as necessary to cover some other, more obscure cases such as SSH private and public keys for publishing with password-less SFTP.

Hopefully, this will be a seamless transition, but if you do use the Mac App Store version of Feeder and notice any strange behaviour, please get in touch using the email address shown on the Feeder support page.

Feeder is available both direct from Reinvented Software and from the Mac App Store for $39.99. An upgrade from version 1.x is $19.99, and education discounts are also available directly from Reinvented Software. To see a list of all the changes or download a 15-day demo, go to the Feeder downloads page.

Together Tip: Use Folder Actions to Auto-Import to iCloud Libraries

June 7th, 2013 by Steve Harris

One of the more popular features in Together is auto-import: you save a file to one of Together’s library folders, and the app automatically imports it into that library.

However, iCloud libraries aren’t visible in the Finder or standard Save dialogs, so this isn’t possible.

A workaround for this is to use Finder folder action scripts to watch a particular folder and import any files added to that folder to your library.

I have created some scripts to do that, and they can be found, along with instructions, on Together’s Script Library page.

There are two folder action scripts: Move to Together or Copy to Together; typically you will want to use Move to Together, as you can then continue to work on the document in the original application, but I’ve provided the other in case that isn’t appropriate. You cannot link to files in iCloud libraries.

Announcing Together 3

May 9th, 2013 by Steve Harris

Together iconTogether 3 is out today. Version 3.0 adds thumbnails, tab exposé, an inbox, stationery, navigation history, autosave and versions, along with improved favorites, previews and Shelf all wrapped up in a smart new design.

Oh, and the Mac App Store version now syncs with iCloud. Finally!

New User Interface

Together’s user interface has been modernized and improved to make the app better in every way, while remaining familiar to anyone who’s used it in the past.

Library window screenshot

A reorganized sidebar puts what you need within closer reach. Together now has an Inbox for collecting imports that have not been added to any groups or folders, and favorite groups and items now appear in the sidebar too.

The item list now has a cleaner layout and the new thumbnails mode shows zoomable preview icons. Navigate the history of previewed items by swiping left or right, or using the back and forward buttons above the list.

Above the preview is a new customizable mini Info view, showing just the information you need, or you can hide the preview altogether and show Quick Look previews with the spacebar.

Tabs now span the whole width of the window, and tab exposé makes it possible to swipe through pages of tab thumbnails to find the one you need.

The Shelf has been completely redesigned with a lighter, cleaner look, improved Quick Look previews and rich text in Quick Notes.

Stationery

Create items of any file type with Stationery. Together comes with built-in options for plain text, RTF and RTFD files, but any file can be used as stationery. Stationery can be made available to all libraries or just the current library.

It’s also possible to customize which type of document is created when pressing ⌘N. By default, this will be a new note, but any kind of global stationery can be used.

The Stationery Chooser can be used to browse, preview, reveal, rename and remove stationery items. Files can also be dragged here to become stationery and any item in Together can be saved as stationery too.

Info and Previews

The new mini Info view above previews always shows an item’s name and can be customized to show tags, comments, dates, labels and ratings too. It’s also possible to favorite items by clicking the favorite star next to the item’s name. The mini Info view can be hidden altogether if not needed.

Full Info is now displayed as a popover, either from the Info toolbar button or alongside items in the list and also includes the Where list, showing every group and folder to which an item belongs. Select these to see their paths, double-click to show that group and select the item.

Each preview type now gets its own menu commands in the Preview menu. This allows for more shortcut keys, improved accessibility and easier discovery of features.

Edited items are now autosaved as versions that can be managed from within the app. Open tabs are now preserved across launches.

iCloud

The Mac App Store version of Together can now sync libraries and stationery between your Macs with iCloud. Apple requires that all Mac apps that use iCloud are sold through the Mac App Store.

When you create a new library with the Mac App Store version of Together, you can choose to store it on your Mac or in iCloud. Libraries stored in iCloud will be available on your other Macs.

After that, you need do nothing. iCloud ensures all your files and Together’s library is kept in sync whenever your Mac is online, so any files you add or changes you make will appear automatically on the other Macs a short time later.

Whether or not the current Together library is stored in iCloud, global stationery is always synced between Macs.

Sandboxing

The Mac App Store version of Together is now a sandboxed application. With advances in OS X, this now means very few other differences between the two versions:

  • It’s no longer possible to store libraries on the Desktop, or link to files on the Desktop. Together will offer to move any such libraries / files.
  • Importing KIT (aka Together 1.x) libraries is no longer available (but can be done with the demo version from this site).

And Much More…

Just about every area of the app has been improved and you will notice there are as many small refinements as large ones.

Some examples: Groups can now be filtered, a new find bar for web pages and PDFs, improved highlighting for found text, dragging documents to notes inserts a hyperlink instead of embedding the file (reverse by holding on Option), relative dates are used in the item list and menus are clearer to navigate.

Also, what you see hides a multitude of changes below the surface, so that Together works as efficiently as possible and can continue to embrace the latest OS X technologies.

In many ways, Together 3.0 recaptures the simplicity of earlier versions while building on its almost decade-long legacy.

Upgrading

Together 3 is a paid upgrade from version 2.x. If you purchased Together from the Reinvented Software web site in the three months before its release, you qualify for a free upgrade to the new version from this site, otherwise an upgrade costs $19.99 and the full version will cost $39.99.

Free upgrades and discounts are not available for the Mac App Store version, but pricing on that version will also be reduced to $19.99 for a limited period following Together 3.0’s release, however if you purchased Together from the Mac App Store in the last 4 weeks, please get in touch.

After that promotion has ended, the Mac App Store version will also cost $39.99. This gives customers who bought through the Mac App Store a chance to upgrade at reduced cost, and allow direct customers cross-grade to the Mac App Store version should they wish.

Please try it!

Finally, anyone can try out Together 3 before buying. A 15-day demo is available for download, and the same page shows the full list of changes. Together 3 requires OS X 10.8 or later.