Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Google please don't stand in the way of innovation.

Google Reader is a really cool web application. I use it myself and I like it very much. Over the last couple of month I have been working on a Cocoa based news reader for Mac OS X. I have not yet released it because we are still working on the design. But this it how it looks:

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Yes, the application is living in the menu bar. But it can also be used as a window based application:

Screen shot 2010-08-18 at 10.46.41 .png

But the most important part about this news reader is that it is integrated into Mac OS X very well. In fact the application is just a PubSub front end. PubSub is a framework provided by Apple that is managing a system wide database that knows which applications have subscribed to which feeds. This has some nice side effects. If you read something in our application it is also marked as read in another application (Mail, Safari) that is subscribed to the same feed (and vice versa). When we started developing the application one of our goals was to support Google Reader. The basic idea was to sync your whole PubSub database with Google Reader. This would automatically sync all PubSub-enabled applications with Google Reader. Even if one or more of these apps do not even know what Google Reader is.

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To say it again: This would enable every app that uses PubSub to automatically sync with Google Reader. There are already a lot of apps that make use of PubSub: Mail, Safari, Xcode, Times, our app, .... It is very easy to adopt PubSub. The problem is that Google has not yet released an official API for Google Reader. There exists an unofficial documentation and there are many apps that are using Google Reader today. They all rely on a private API that is not documented very well. We have decided not to support Google Reader in any form because of that. I would love to see a public API. Then we would have a Google Reader Sync Agent in weeks. This sync agent would be so cool in my opinion.

 

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Core Data Editor 3.0 released

Yesterday I finally released Core Data Editor 3.0. It took me about ten months to get from a beta version of Core Data Editor 3.0 to the final version. What is new:

  • Core Data Editor automatically observes the file system and tries to figure out when a persistent store file is changed by another application. If Core Data Editor detects a change it automatically reloads the file and refreshes its UI. Many thanks to Stuart Connolly, the developer of SCEvent, which makes observing the file system very easy.
  • Better support for iOS applications: In Core Data Editor 2 you could only specify the location of the iPhone Simulator directory, globally. This makes no sense anymore. Apple changed the locations where the Simulator places application data which broke Core Data Editor. Now you have to specify the location of the applications folder in each configuration. This allows you to use Core Data Editor for different versions of the SDK.
  • Updates are now delivered via Sparkle.
  • Help is now available and integrated in the app and will be constantly improved.

Core Data Editor Website

The following screen cast shows Core Data Editor and a third party app. As I add objects in the third party app Core Data Editor refreshes it's UI to reflect the changes. Neat - isn't it?

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(Click on the image above to watch the screen cast.)

Starting with version 3.0 Core Data Editor costs $20. Everyone who already donated $20 will receive a free license for Core Data Editor 3.0. Just drop me an e-mail if I forgot you. I hope you like the latest version of Core Data Editor.

Core Data Editor Website