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Email is not a filesystem

One of the three main features of the .Mail app:

Imagine finding every attachment someone sent you, sorted by date or name directly in your email client? It’s similar to the “All your files” functionality in your OSX Finder.

It seems like such a great idea! So many times have I felt utterly lost in my emails, searching for a particular attachment from someone.

But then it struck me. I seriously dislike attachment files. In addition to being next to impossible to find, they bloat my mailbox because I cannot delete them without also deleting the email. And as anyone with moderate to large sized mailbox knows, a bloated mailbox is a sluggish mailbox.

Also think about the wasted bandwidth in delivering those files! It’s not rare to see an email with a nice 10-meg Powerpoint file being delivered to 10-20 people, most of them quite liberally CC’d, “just FYI”. So what’s the solution?

I dunno. Sparrow had a great idea of automatically uploading attachments to Dropbox and pasting a link to the file in the email. Still one might argue that since the files are not delivered as part of the email, they might not be accessible if they are needed later on (the sender might have deleted the file from his/her Dropbox). But that’s clearly an edge case that I’d be very much OK with.

(by the way, did you notice the clever pun with the name of the .Mail app?)

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How many people use Twitter’s own apps?

How many people use Twitter’s own apps?

Speaking of Twitter clients, mr. Benjamin Mayo did some research on what clients people use. Not surprisingly most tweets come from the web interface and Twitter’s own native clients. Perhaps a bit surprising is to see Echofon as the biggest 3rd party client. It’s users are definitely quieter than the vocal minority using Tweetbot.

Also seeing Twitter for Mac on place 32 makes it clear why Twitter is not too interested in keeping it up to date.

Via Gruber.

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The perfect Twitter client

Over time I’ve tried quite a few Twitter clients on OS X, some good, some not so good. I’ve been mostly using Twitter’s own Twitter.app that evolved from the good ol’ Tweetie, and for the last few months a client called Osfoora.

What would I like to see in the ultimate client? Glad you asked:

  • Preview images inline
  • Streaming
  • Native and clean OS X look & feel (real Cocoa app), including support for gestures
  • Global shortcuts for composing a tweet and displaying the timeline
  • Allow to follow / unfollow, see follow status
  • Regexp based muting, timed muting
  • Easy access to lists
  • Display both real name and Twitter handle

Osfoora comes close, especially the latest update with streaming support made a big difference. Still, Osfora is missing advanced muting features (foursquare and the like) and it doesn’t display both real names and nicks, and it doesn’t support gestures (the official Twitter.app is nice in this sense). So close!

Then there’s the alpha version of Tweetbot for Mac. I can tolerate it being “the most android-looking app on iOS” on my phone and on the iPad mostly because the apps are always running in full screen, but it just doesn’t sit well in OS X.

Given the stance Twitter seems to have taken on 3rd party clients, I wonder if I ever get to see a client of my dreams.

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035

Well before the iPhone, and going back all the way to the early 2000s, Apple had been working on tablet prototypes that would eventually form the groundwork for the original iPad.

It’s referred to as the 035 mockup or prototype.

Continue reading “035”

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Will OS X Mountain Lion be one of the last desktop operating systems Apple ships?

Will OS X Mountain Lion be one of the last desktop operating systems Apple ships?

Universal Internet truths, part XVII: If the title of an article contains a question, the answer is almost always no.

We’re not there yet, even though the writer has found some serious evidence:

Mountain Lions are an endangered species.

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Why closed is better for business

Why closed is better for business

To have apps, you need developers. To have developers, you need enthusiasm and an investment of time and talent. Enthusiasm and effort can be driven by many motivations, but the most reliable and consistent of those is money.

It’s annoying how some people really do not want to pay for immaterial goods (movies, music, games) they consume. I know a guy who makes all of his platform/device choices by the ease of pirating content.

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Three simple steps to quit listening to music

I used to listen to quite a lot of music. Nowadays I hardly ever find myself thoroughly immersed in tunes, actually listening and not just hearing music. Why? Podcasts, that’s why.

For a long time I knew podcasts existed, but never thought there’s anything worth my time there. Then several things happened:

  1. I bought my first iPhone
  2. I found about Instacast1
  3. I stumbled upon the 5by5 network

Yeah, I had an iPod before the iPhone. Sure, I had phones that were perfectly capable of playing podcasts. But there was sooo much friction. To download the podcasts. To sync the podcasts to the iPod / phone. To find a suitable player with the ability to display shownotes, remember the position and so on. In this regard, the iPhone along with Instacast changed pretty much everything. Suddenly I could catch podcasts on the fly, stream them online and check the shownotes on my phone. Great!

…until I found myself subscribing to twenty-something podcasts2. Each of them producing 60-120 (or even more, in the case of Hypercritical) minutes worth of material every week. Now I am in the situation that I have more interesting stuff to listen than I can handle! Nevertheless, I regret nothing and can only recommend this to everyone. It’s nice to be able to make use of my spare time commuting, doing errands and so on. Talk radio is dead, long live podcasts!


  1. Instacast 2 isn’t what the first version used to be. I purchased the IAP add-on(s?) and found myself seriously confused with the “smart” and dumb playlists and all the shenanigans. I might actually be in the market for a replacement. 

  2. I’ll write a separate post listing my favorite podcasts. 

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Email is bad business

Email is bad business

Sparrow did everything right. They built an incredible email app with broad appeal and released it into the hottest software market the world has ever seen. And yet it was a financial flop.

Last Friday when Sparrow was canned, I was honestly annoyed. I’ve bought and used both the OS X and the iOS client extensively right after they added generic IMAP support to it. But David Barnard did the math, and it ain’t pretty.

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Marco Arment on buying stuff

Marco Arment on buying stuff

While we’re on the topic on making choices, on yesterday’s Build & Analyze Marco talked about research before making a buying decision.

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First step’s the hardest

So I finally managed to start a blog. I’ve been agonizing on so many things for such a long time. Wondering about what to write about? What platform to use? Should I self-host or go for a hosted service?1 Does anyone care what I write about? Is it even worth starting, knowing that I might just abandon the whole thing after three posts? Do people even read blogs anymore?

Then today at work I had a brief discussion with my colleague about the matter. Turns out, he has had similar thoughts for quite a while. So we decided to do it (Mike’s blog can be found here), knowing that both of us has at least one reader 🙂

Overthinking tends to yield more thinking, but nothing concrete. Sometimes just winging it and seeing where it takes you might be just what fits the bill.


  1. I’m still planning on self-hosting, I’ve yet to make a choice on where to host it.