Ulysses 20 is the newest version of the subscription-based test and markdown editor on steroids. It now has grammar checking capabilities, a new dashboard option and the ability to navigate multiple documents through an outline view.
To start with dashboard: I can only describe it with a word I rarely if ever use: cool. The dashboard lives in the sidebar where you previously could show images and notes and keywords. Now, it’s possible to show all that, including annotations (very, very useful), your progress, keywords, the new outline view, images, notes, and links. All in a nicely designed and ultra-intelligible list. If you hate dashboards, that’s OK too, as you can still view everything separately, as you used to.
The new outline panel gives you an instant overview of a sheet/document’s structure and, if you’re used to breaking up your content in several sheets, it will outline all of those into one outline view. It does that with the ‘material’ sheets as well — for those, I would have liked to see either the option to leave those out or no inclusion at all, as they’re probably irrelevant to the content you plan to actually publish.
The most impressive part of the new feature set, however, is the grammar and styles checker. At first I thought it would be an integration with one of the major ones, e.g. Grammarly. Luckily for us, the developers decided to go with a solution that offers multi-language capabilities and is more intelligent than Grammarly.
Unlike Grammarly, the Ulysses checker did understand sentences that are complex and interspersed with jargon. It isn’t aggressive in its “advice” and explains better why it thinks your sentence or word choice is wrong.
Best of all, though, the Ulysses checker includes advice on your writing style, which is bound to improve reading by ensuring a consistent and harmonious style throughout your documents.
In short, Ulysses 20 would have been a serious upgrade in pre-subscription times. Now it’s part of your subscription and you can start enjoying the benefits without having to ponder whether it’s worth upgrading in the first place.
Bottom-line: if you make a list with the functionality offered by Ulysses and the way it makes your writing more efficient, allowing you to focus more on your writing than on managing the content, you’ll always end up with Ulysses for most if not all your projects.