During the holidays I started a new project called Chapper which is a small App.net Windows desktop client. Its design goal is to make it as small as possible with exactly the features needed for using App.net with one account.
But all the users (and possible users) might ask now: why another client next to Nymphicus and by the way: shouldn’t you spend your time into finishing Nymphicus 2.0 finally?
Well, the goal of Chapper is different: small, fresh structure and easily to be changed by me. Nymphicus has grown much during the two years it is developed now (remember: on start it was “only” a Twitter client) and therefor anything I change or add there has consequences in many places (does it work with multiple accounts, all account types, Views, filters, ….) which slowed down everything recently.
So I decided to have a “playground” to try new features and changes at a much (!) smaller codebase and also wanted to have a testing implementation of my Open Source(!) App.net .NET client library I released earlier this year. Some examples: the App.net authorization code is completely rewritten und will be part of the next Nymphicus 2.0 Beta as well as the layout within Chapper is already based on a theme (which will be in Nymphicus 2.0 final too).
You see Chapper is my way of speeding things up again with Nymphicus – having very few free time (remember everything here is my hobby next to my normal job and my family) is always a challenge.
Finally Chapper will be commercial. It’ll be EUR 1,89 which I think is a fair pricing.
And an important note: licenses for Nymphicus will also be valid for Chapper. Boom!
I don’t want to push anyone to pay a second time!
I just uploaded the latest 2.0 Beta (Beta 9) and updated the auto update information.
The main new thing is the new support for the just released Private Messaging API of App.net. This includes the retrieval, the display in your Views as well as the sending and the conversation view for the PMs. As far as I know Nymphicus is the first Windows client featuring PMs and one of the first in general. I have to say once again that the APIs of App.net are great – same for the documentation.
Also Beta 9 has some Stream Marker optimizations next to some more user interface improvements – both are still work in progress so.
You might have noticed that I recently changed all texts refering to Twitter now are marked with a comment about Twitter is closing the API for external client at the 100.000 user limit. While Nymphicus is not next to that limit somewhen it might reach it. Because of this (and all over this homepage) I added the text that we are very uncertain about the future of Twitter in Nymphicus!
Nymphicus for Mac is currently being migrated to API 1.1 and will then be working with 100.000 tokes – after that and based on we read everywhere it will stop working for new accounts.
Nymphicus for Windows is not only Twitter but also App.net, Facebook, QUOTE.fm and Google Reader (more possibly to come). So to be honest I have currently no real motivation to do any work in the Twitter part.
Oh wait, there is one motivation: the existing customers! They are the reason why I not simply drop Twitter in Nymphicus at all (I really think about that – sad, isn’t it?). For sure I don’t invest my very little free time (this is a hobby project and I work much more than 40 hours per week an my daily normal job) in something the provider (Twitter) seems to hate me for. So I will see to fix bugs and let the Twitter part be available as long as I can.
But all the innovation and new cool stuff are now in the other networks – and there the most important for me is App.net!
Nymphicus for Mac 1.3 is finally available in Mac AppStore. This version has some new features you might find usefull:
- Nymphicus now uses TweetMarker to save last read tweet
- Use your Magic Mouse, Trackpad etc to scroll up beyond the beginning of the tweet list to refresh
- Links to pictures from several image upload services show now a thumbnail directly in tweet so you see a preview immediately
- A new option to keep reading position
- Plays now an optional notification sound for new tweets
- New tweets are marked as unread, marked as read after 5 seconds when user scrolls
Additionaly some minor bugs have been fixed.
So i hope you like these new features and enjoy the new version 1.3 of Nymphicus for Mac.
I am very, very, very happy to finally announce the immediate availibility of the first public beta of Nymphicus for Windows 2.0.
The 2.0 is mainly about an all new design and the integration of App.net.
See the now added extra subpage of Nymphicus 2.0 Beta for detailed informations as well as the download link.
Many of you might have read about all the mess Twitter wanting to kill all “traditional twitter clients”. While I really think this decission will kill Twitter itself on the long run (at first only the heavy users will leave – but we are the multiplicators…) I have had to think about the consequences.
Now I have come to a conclusion for myself: I stopped all the already done work on Nymphicus for Windows which was focused on the modularization in preperation for Nymphicus Basic and Metro.
As new clients (which they would be) make no sense currently the modularization does not make that much sense anymore (except of cleaning up of course).
Sounds sad and it is for sure – but there is a big plus: I now will work on the “old” 1.4.4 codebase and so I immediately can do all the layout changes I planned already since ages. So there will be a Nymphicus for Windows 2.0 – but it is back to the original focus: redesign. So today I did spend the first two hours and this is what I have already and the direction it will move on:
And next to that I now will finally continue my work on the longterm planned Meneré – a Google Reader client. And also there an important decission has taken place: I will start doing it as a Windows 8 app from scratch (traditional window layout later on). I am excited to play with it!
Today you finally released a more or less clear statement what you think about clients having own ideas on how to present Tweets to the user. The short version: every client has to look and feel as Twitter thinks how it is the only right way.
I have read many statements which call this decision something like bullshit or similar and I am personally not amused how Twitter handles us developers. Many blog posts state that Twitter won’t be as big and feature rich if us developers and users wouldn’t have invented things like Mentions or Retweets – and this is just the trues. But Twitter seems to have lost its original user base right now and is focusing on the celebrity and events stuff they do spam me about in their newsletter quite some time already.
For me Twitter’s homepage is not (and never has been!) a good and useful way to access tweets. From day one I have been using clients (first on Mac, then iPhone and nowadays also on Windows (you might guess it – Nymphicus in my case)). If Twitter is going further in this direction they might be going there without me!
Enough complaints – what about Nymphicus!?
Nymphicus for Mac is relatively save – the now Display Requirements (formerly Display Guidelines) will be easy to implement while you might discuss if it makes sense to require to have the posting date on top right instead of bottom of the tweet…
There is one point I can’t believe that they they do require it now – it’s “Individuel Tweets -> Tweet Actions -> b”. It reads as follows:
No other social or 3rd party actions may be attached to a Tweet.
While I can understand Twitter (not the user!) may have an interest to ensure they are not send to Facebook, LinkedIn and so on this statement as written there also excludes services like Pocket, Instapaper or delicious. And this is – I have to say it also – bullshit! For my personal way of use sending Tweets and links iTweeits to Pocket is essential. If we have to remove this feature from Nymphicus (and this how it looks like) we’ll have a major feature less…
Nymphicus for Windows has the same issues as the Mac version but also adds another huge one as it is multiple protocol already. This time it is “Timeline -> Time integrity”. This one reads as follows:
Tweets that are grouped together into a timeline should not be rendered with non-Twitter content. e.g. comments, updates from other networks
This is against the main and central feature of Nymphicus – the Views. In my daily use I do have many Views mixed out of Twitter, Facebook, QUOTE.fm and Google Reader (and I did plan to add LinkedIn and Xing) which is awesome. Now I have to remove the other services (which I won’t do!) or have to cripple Views that they can only be pure Twitter or pure Non-Twitter. So in future I will have to use at least two Views where today one is enough for me. Thank you Twitter…!
I don’t want to speak about stopping work on Nymphicus as of today but once again Twitter makes me very upset on how they think they can play with us users (remember: Nymphicus has been created in my personal need for a Twitter access in a way I need it).
We welcome the new Mac OS X 10.8 called Mountain Lion today.
We are very proud to now officially announce that Nymphicus for Mac as available in the Mac App Store is already compatible and works great with the the cat out of Cupertino.
For the technically interested: the main difference for all apps is that they are now so called sandboxed – meaning there is a very strict right management now enabled by default so apps can only see their own data and files. So if you find quite some apps which do not work anymore – this is most probably the reason. But as said Nymphicus is already compatible since quite some weeks as a more or less silent update 🙂
Remember when I wrote Nymphicus for Windows 2.0 will be mostly about a newly designed user interface? Well, that is still true but while having had much time offline (relocation + ISP chaos) there came a second important change to my mind which is what I am currently working on.
Nymphicus 1.x is mainly a one file fits all solution – its overview looks as simple as following:
While this concept is quite easy to maintain while you only have this one client there is the problem that as soon as you (me ;)) start to think about new ideas it is very limited.
So currently all my work is dedicated to the part of splitting Nymphicus into several files. Let’s show the concept here in another overview image:
So the main thing about this concept is the Nymphicus.Core.dll I currently work at.
This DLL handles all the main stuff (having accounts of several types, retrieving items, sending items and whatever is possible in the different service (favorite, like, …).
Secondly I want to once again contribute to the Open Source community and do extract all the external services (currently Pocket, Instapaper, del.icio.us and Pinboard) into an own project which than will be in the future an easy way for any .NET application to embed those sharing services (for example I will add them to Winslew then…).
When the creation of those DLLs is completed (it’s still quite a lot work) I also will have the basement to create a Nymphicus family all sharing the same Nymphicus.Core.dll. And how do I plan to use them?
Well, first I will work on a “Nymphicus Light”. There is still no simple small and great Windows Twitter client available so this is what the light version will be – one account, traditional layout (tabs for timeline, mentions, DMs, …) and as lightweight as possible (e. g. I won’t use WPF there as it tends to use a lot (!) of RAM.
And second with the upcoming Windows 8 a Metro version would be awesome, wouldn’t it? (This is a real question – I am not convinced about what I saw in all the betas and previews…) I think the idea of Views would be a great match to Metro – every View could have an own tile.
So my current main problem is that as long as I work on the concepts I simply have nothing to show (screenshots and so on) – as soon as the work is done there I’ll focus on the new and cleaner user interface and then we’ll have many screenshots and hopefully some public betas.
Enough said for today – see you soon.
I just uploaded Nymphicus for Windows to the download server and updated the integrated auto updater information. This release is a minor update addressing a stupid bug I added in 1.4.3 (hashtags lost their ability to open the corresponding search window) and adds two new context menus.
The first context menu is on the sending client name on the bottom of each tweet. Using it you now are able to easily add a filter for that client (you might want to call it “mute that client”:
And while doing so I added the same type of context menu to the hashtags – so you now can mute a hashtag with one click:
And here is what they will do – they create a filter and at them automatically to your currently used View:
Oh, and the new feature in 1.4.3 to maintain the scroll position is now optional (turned on by default).
Finally if you wonder where my normal faster pace has been the last days – I am just relocating which is hard enough by itself so the time on the PC is next to zero (even the Mac time is very low).
But it is even worse – my local ISP (Deutsche Telekom) completely f***ed up my relocation (they simply lost my order) and as the German ISP market is a mess I will be offline for some weeks (I hope to be back by the end of June – but no guarentee at all) – I only do have EDGE (2G) in my new home 🙁
So please be patient with me for that time…