Facebook, the problem that doesn’t need to be one

Facebook has been in the news a lot, lately, did you notice? It’s difficult not to. Personally, I don’t understand what the fuss is about. Any human being, young or old, should steer clear of any development by someone who states: “The suckers let me have all their data”, when he started his company. The key word in that sentence once uttered by mr. Zuckerberg was “suckers”. The use of that word didn’t bode well for any form of decency or empathy. But I understand some of us have difficulty grasping the notion of predatory behaviour. And yet, it shouldn’t be too difficult to stop Facebook from destroying communities and democracies worldwide… Read More Facebook, the problem that doesn’t need to be one

Text editor with citation power: Author

What do you expect from a text editor? Either you want it to encourage a focus on the process of writing with this particular app or you want it to lead your focus to the subject you’re writing about. If you went for the first option, then the design, look and feel, and feature set of the app will determine your choice of app. If you favoured the second answer, an app like iA Writer or the Author app I’m covering here will have more appeal.… Read More Text editor with citation power: Author

Your Mac is a Zettelkasten note taking system

Originally an “analogue” index card system invented by a German academic, the zettelkasten (or slip box) note taking method is the subject of hefty discussions on Reddit and other note taking forums as to whether the best software to manage a zettelkasten is Roamer, Obsidian, DEVONthink, Bear app, Ulysses, Drafts, or the new kid on the block, Craft. As much as it’s a pleasure to read the pro and cons, the essence of the zettelkasten is that it’s an interlinked, richly connected system of atomic information.… Read More Your Mac is a Zettelkasten note taking system

Scapple, a free association supporting mind mapping app

If you’ve ever tried using a mind mapping app knowing that you aren’t the structured visualisation type of person, you’ll know that it’s a pain and often leads to more frustration and time loss than just writing a list of things to do and hoping for the best. I am that kind of person. For some of my work, lists are woefully inadequate but as my brain isn’t mind-map wired, they will have to do. I resorted to using project management for a while but even OmniPlan is quite complex and overkill if you’re not a team. And then I found Scapple from the creators of Scrivener and thought I might give it a shot. And it’s been a joy so far.… Read More Scapple, a free association supporting mind mapping app

Ulysses 18 is ready for iOS 13 and iPadOS, syncs via Dropbox

Ulysses will receive its 17th update on September 30. Although Ulysses already had its own dark mode and split view, version 18 will support the new iOS 13 Dark Mode as well as the new system Split View on iPad. But, perhaps more importantly, with version 18 you will be able to save your files outside of the app’s library. In the process, Ulysses becomes independent of iCloud for synchronisation as you can now use Dropbox… Read More Ulysses 18 is ready for iOS 13 and iPadOS, syncs via Dropbox

Integrating Ulysses and Agenda with DEVONthink Pro makes for a perfect long-document management system

When you think of research and writing long documents, you inevitably think of Scrivener. There is an alternative approach, though, in the form of three apps that communicate with each other like you couldn’t imagine. DEVONthink Pro 3, Ulysses and Agenda combine to make a great long-document writing system.… Read More Integrating Ulysses and Agenda with DEVONthink Pro makes for a perfect long-document management system

Affinity Publisher is an InDesign killer

Serif, the developers of Affinity Photo and Designer, last week released their much-anticipated publishing app, Affinity Publisher. The new layout design app comes with a good deal of unique and very clever features, including “StudioLink”, an integration system – that re-defines the adjective “seamless” – between Publisher and their Designer and Photo apps.… Read More Affinity Publisher is an InDesign killer

The EU Copyright Directive and its impact

The EU Parliament has given its blessing to the new Copyright Directive which aims to strengthen the position of EU-based creators – filmmakers, actors, musicians, journalists and writers – when negotiating with publishers and producers. It should lead to a fairer system of exploitation of their works and performances, but a lot of people, including academics who have reported on this issue, seem to believe the Directive will actually lead to less available content, legal confusion that can be taken advantage of, and more censorship within Europe.… Read More The EU Copyright Directive and its impact

Off-Topic: Finally, a worthy astrology app for macOS

I have a hobby that may surprise people and simultaneously make them think I’m bonkers… I love dabbling in astrology. I know, most people will say it’s rubbish, but I’ve erected enough astrology charts to think Hamlet was right when he said: “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in our philosophy.” I used to be a Kairon user, software developed by an Austrian astrologer/programmer who stopped updating the macOS application a few years ago. Then I started using iPhemeris on the iPad by Clifford Ribaudo, but that software gets updated very occasionally and you Ribaudo hides behind an alleged Apple bug in iOS that prevents users from exporting complete charts and tables. But in the week between Christmas and New Year I’ve found a macOS/iOS/Android software that might be the astrology app Mac users have been craving for a long time. It’s Astro Gold and it’s been developed by the same people who made Solar Fire the industry standard on Windows PCs. So, although it’s off-topic, here’s a review of Astro Gold.… Read More Off-Topic: Finally, a worthy astrology app for macOS