Posts Tagged ‘Daedalus’

iBooks Author

January 20th, 2012

First things first: No, we won’t support any sort of export to iBooks Author, because we can’t. There’s just no way to do it, as the file format is proprietary, and the import options within the app are limited to Pages and Word files. That’s right, there’s no option to import plain text files or even HTML (which the format is based on).

Yeah, sucks, but that’s the way it is. Ask Apple what they were thinking.

Having said that, I’m pretty excited about iBooks Author, because it looks like a nice and easy way to do some rather fancy eBooks. The image gallery widget is great, for example, and so are the options to create coffee table books or (something I’m really looking forward to) children’s books. Not having to fiddle around with CSS will be awesome, and the way they handle file export (send via email or just publish to the iBookstore) are just great.

Novels? Not so much.

Which leads me to that dreaded piece of EULA:

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Daedalus Touch 1.2: Markdown, ePub and iOS5

October 26th, 2011

Daedalus Touch iPad ePub Export iBooks

So, there it is: Daedalus Touch 1.2 — available now at every iTunes App Store known to man. Only on iPad. Only on iOS5.

This is the second feature-update we’ve put out since the original release. We’ve added lots of stuff, but the two most prominent new features are Markdown support and ePub export. So allow me to elaborate on these a bit.

First off, we’ve added Markdown as an export option, available if you export to PDF or ePub. You can choose it by switching the “style” setting from “none” to, well… Markdown. We support most of Markdown’s syntax: Six levels of headers, ordered and unordered lists, links, emphasis, code, block quotes, line breaks, you name it.

There’s no support for images, as Daedalus can’t handle images and iOS won’t let you access anything outside of an app’s own space. There’s also neither support for tables nor for nested lists or nested block quotes within nested lists of block quotes. More on that in another post.

Then again, you’ll be pleased to know that we now *do* support all kinds of special file.extensions. So if you’re in the camp of .mdown or .md, we got you covered — during import, synching and export.

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Daedalus Touch Desktop Picture (Wallpaper, for you Win-folks)

September 16th, 2011

Hi there,

this has been sitting in one of my folders for some time, and I simply forgot to upload it. Bummer. But hey, no deadlines on the interwebs, right? So here it is: The first ever officially licensed Soulmen Wallpaper Desktop Picture, loosely based on the in-app backdrop of Daedalus Touch.

Only in 1600×900, sorry, but it’s ad-free, unlabeled, and it makes a great impression on a second monitor running Ulysses 2.1.

Cheers,
Marcus

Update: 2560×1440 by popular demand. :)

Daedalus Touch 1.1 released on App Store, iPads across the world cheer in joyful anticipation

August 12th, 2011

Just a quick heads up regarding Daedalus Touch 1.1: It’s live now, you can go and grab it via the usual channels. We’re extremely proud of some of the stuff we packed into this update, even though most of it was user feedback anyway. ;)

So, thanks for your ongoing support, and happy writing.
Next up: “Back to the Mac…”
Marcus

Officially announcing Ulysses 2.1 and Daedalus Touch 1.1

July 25th, 2011

Hey,

in case you haven’t been following our Twitter account, we hereby announce Ulysses 2.1 for Mac OS X and Daedalus Touch 1.1 for iPad. While the latter should be ready for App Store submission sometime this week, the former won’t see the light of day until mid-August. Fingers crossed.

So… what will be in?

Ulysses 2.1: First off, this will be a unified, simultaneous release via both Mac App Store and Sparkle. There has been some confusion recently, as to whether we’re still committed to pre-App Store customers, and of course we are, and this release should squash all quibbles. Or whatever.

2.1 will primarily see fixes, new localizations (e.g. Japanese) and some stuff for Mac OS X 10.7 aka Lion. Feature-wise, you won’t see anything substantially new except for the final version of our HTML/ePub exporter. This alone will propel Ulysses to a whole new level, and we thus advance its version number on a .x-level.

Continuing the myth busting, work is already well underway for the next version of Ulysses. In fact, work started about half a year ago. We are not (NO!!) abandoning Ulysses for Daedalus Touch, even if you’ve heard or suspected otherwise.

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UPDATE: This is really hard… [Daedalus Touch]

May 25th, 2011

This is soooooo very embarrassing…

UPDATE: Version 1.0.2 has been approved by Apple and should already be on the App Store. Big, big thanks to the review team for the speedy turnaround.

This post should’ve been a celebration. Instead it’s a warning: For the time being, please *DON’T* download Daedalus Touch from the iTunes App Store.

Yeah, it’s released, and yeah, we’re quite happy, but we have identified a severe bug which causes the app to crash. If you have 1.0 installed, please refrain from updating to 1.0.1 and wait till the next update is approved by Apple.

We’re awfully sorry and are banging our heads on various tables. If you’re affected by this bug, please accept our apologies and be assured that we’re trying everything we can to get a fully-funtional version up again.

Thanks for your patience and ongoing support.
Marcus

PS: For up-to-date news and infos, please follow us on Twitter. It’s the first place where we’ll announce updates.

[UPDATE] Daedalus (kind of) private beta

May 4th, 2011

Update: Beta application closed, enough testers on board. We’ll send out how-tos at the end of the week. Thanks everybody for your interest. :)

We’re pretty excited, to say the least, to finally (no, really) announce the more or less private beta program for Daedalus touch. If you’re in possession of one of Apple’s larger touchscreen devices and are interested in getting your hands on our latest creation, plus if you’re not afraid of crashes and quirks and maybe even have a Dropbox account and/or are a MobileMe user — head on over to the private beta application form, fill it out and… get in!

We’ll then get back to you later this week with instructions on how to obtain the beta and such.

A note on the “private” in this beta: Given the current App Store limitations, we can only have a small number of beta participants. So while the form is currently open to everybody (no invites or such), we’ll close it once we’ve reached a certain number of applicants. We’ll also try to ensure device parity, so that we get an evenly distributed amount of iPad 1 and iPad 2 users, so your chances are… dunno what your chances are, to be honest. ;)

Whatever, have fun.

Daedalus’ font & color settings

November 29th, 2010

Daedalus touch look & feel settings

There you go.

“Sepia” will just change the background color to a bit of, well, sepia tone, while the “dark” setting will actually get you a light grey on almost-black, which is perfect for writing really long sentences in the, uhm, dark, yeah.

What’s taking us so long?

November 18th, 2010

waiting for daedalus touch

Some may wonder why we haven’t updated the blog with info about Daedalus touch, or why we stil haven’t announced a release date yet.

The reason is simple: We’re aiming for very high ground. And we’re not just creating another Mail.app for writers here. There are no blueprints for what we do, no interface samples to draw from, no similar apps already in the AppStore.

A lot of what we’re doing involves lots and lots of research, user testing, trial and error. We’re charting new ground — which sometimes means leaving it again.

During the last couple of weeks we worked harder than we ever had to, all in order to implement concepts that didn’t work out, or stuff you won’t even notice was hard to pull off. iOS development is fun, but the restrictions are immense, especially when chosing to leave the throtten paths.

As an example, we wanted to go for the “less-buttoned interface”. We wanted to hide buttons as much as possible, creating an always-fullscreen writing experience. We had four buttons, one in each corner of the screen, and they would fade in and out based on certain actions of the user.

We implemented it, ran with it for some time.
Then we ditched it.

It just didn’t work, as we couldn’t create a consistent experience, and the usability troubles weren’t worth the benefits. So as much as we had loved to go for that ideal of a pure, blank, all-text interface — we’ll just use a standard top-of-the-screen button bar now.

Or Daedalus’ search system. You’ll just use it and take it for granted, and the countless hours that went into it, the cursing, the sweat, the sheer anger at that stubborn touchscreen device that wouldn’t do as we told it, the rewrites, the now-useless first, second, third version of code — you won’t see that.

That’s good and all, ’cause if you don’t notice that work, it means we managed to get it right. Just know that we’re working our asses off here to produce a great user experience, and to ensure the kind of quality you’ve come to expect from us and from iPad apps in general.

Bottom line: If you hoped for a November release, just in time for NaNoWriMo or such, you already know you’ve been out of luck. We’re done with the editor and basic file mangement/organization. We’re also done with search and settings. We’re missing sync, folder mangement, export and some bonus stuff I can’t talk abnout.

We hope to have a beta ready by year’s end.

Some stuff I’m working on…

September 29th, 2010

Styles menu Daedalus touch

Messing around with UIMenuController.

Tapping on “Style…” would bring up several styling options for the selected text. Either plain RTF styles, such as “bold/italic/underline”, or semantic styles such as “emphasize”. It could also host text insertions; think of tags, which would be inserted before/after the selection.

These options could either be shown in the current menu (replacing cut/copy/paste/etc.) or in a larger popover which still points to the selection. The first option being much more direct, if pretty limited. The second option could hold more options and could go WYSIWYG on the selection. It could even hold the basic format palette of B/U/I, text alignment, lists/intendation. It might break in landscape, though, and the initial menu might get awfully long in certain languages.

Other caveats/questions: Would it act as a switch (undo “bold” when already bold), would it be fixed styles (or would the user need to customize the available options), would it work on a selection of zero (just the insertion point), would it allow paragraph-based styling (headline) and so on.

But I like the idea, as it would allow text manipulation without having a button bar visible. It would also be much more direct: manipulations would happen in visible context and would thus be seperate from nav-bar buttons (which might then only manipulate global options such as view, spell-check on/off etc.). Dunno, but it could well hold a basic set of markdown tags… hm.

Please note that this is filed under Research & Development, so don’t expect to find it in any shipping product. :)


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