I prefer to use (and make) native software, so it was
encouraging to read this Twitter
thread by Rich Siegel, the maker of BBEdit.
I’m going to record it here both so it is easier to read
and for archival purposes.
All right, let’s do this.
It is time to speak of many things. Before I start I
want to make a few things crystal clear:
- Except for my own experiences and matters of
objective fact, everything I have to say about matters
Electron-adjacent is MY OPINION. Don’t @ me.
I wonder if Edward Hopper’s Night
Windows inspired Hitchcock’s Rear Window
No l’X? 🖕
No CDI? 🖕
Vive la 🇫🇷
I recently took a break from my work on Bear and made a
new icon for Image2icon. The original was
made by Konstantin
Datz, and it was gorgeous.
It was a bit intimidating to reimagine it for Big Sur, but
I’m happy with how it turned out.
Dan Moren of Six Colors writes about
iCloud Keychain in Chrome: “[…] I end up using Chrome a
decent amount for sites that Safari doesn’t support well or
at all […]”.
It isn’t Safari that doesn’t support the sites, it’s the
sites that don’t support Safari. When Mac software breaks
because of OS changes, the developer doesn’t say “sorry,
macOS doesn’t support my app”. It is on them to make sure
their stuff runs on the platform(s) they target.
This whole thing made me think of a good
thread I read recently by Rasmus Andersson. In it he
says, “The contemporary idea of a web browser is an
abstraction layer for technology to allow some document or
software to be available to anyone using a web browser. If
your website only works in Chrome it’s really not different
from say only working on macOS.”
Couldn’t have said it better:
Daring Fireball: What an Amazing Feature.
writes about Catalyst:
That NeXT competitive advantage became Apple’s
competitive advantage, and, later, iPhone’s competitive
advantage. This is the competitive advantage a native
platform from Apple has over the web; it would be such a
shame to half-ass this transition to Marzipan and concede
defeat to web apps on the desktop instead of letting native
apps reach the heights they deserve.
So far, Catalyst (the
official name for Marzipan) apps aren’t that great. Not even
the Apple ones. But they are getting better, and that’s
maturing nicely too, and it seems to be a better option for
creating quality cross-platform software. Apple also seems to
be putting more focus on it than Catalyst, which is a good
Oh, and one more thing: I can now run iOS/iPadOS apps on
my M1 Mac. Buckle up.
I design software, and much of that work is done in
Sketch. I’ve used it my
whole career and will continue to do so as long as it stays a
native app. Lucky for me,
I think it will. (Kudos to whoever set that headline in
ITC Garamond Narrow, and shame on whoever set the text in
I was also worried
that Origami Studio,
another great tool I use, would go with Electron for their
next big release, but I’m happy I was wrong!
new logos are bad”. You can say that again…
recently went from being a playground to being my go-to code
editor for anything I do outside Xcode.
Fast and versatile with a solid completion engine. I’m so
happy to see great editors with IDE capabilities that aren’t
built on top of Chromium.
Listed below are some of the blogs I follow closely. (Last
updated 3 June 2020.)
Danny Carey of Tool is a good
Oh, and if you are on an iPad, use
this bookmarklet to get the system playback controls.
Fuck your custom player, YouTube.
Another great RSS app from back in the day: NewsFire.
Gotta love the French, and that permalink: daringfireball.net/linked/2020/04/03/f-u.
Jason Fried writes about
suddenly working remotely:
This also isn’t a time to try to simulate the office.
Working from home is not working from the office. Working
remotely is not working locally. Don’t try to make one the
other. If you have meetings all day at the office, don’t
simply simulate those meetings via video. This is an
opportunity not to have those meetings [emphasis
added]. Write it up instead, disseminate the information
that way. Let people absorb it on their own time. Protect
their time and attention. Improve
the way you communicate.
Studio will follow in the path
of Spark AR Studio and become a cross-platform app. I
imagine they will go a React + Electron route (as apposed
to C++ and Qt like they did
with Spark), as I don’t think performance will be as
I hope I’m wrong.
Talking about Pulp
and Caffeinated got me
thinking about another similar gem from the days of yore:
Lemeden describes how you can take full-page screenshots
of webpages in Safari on macOS.
This is also doable in Safari on iOS (since iOS 13) by
taking a screenshot of a webpage, or by using the
“Markup” action in the activity view.
I’m looking into bringing those capabilities to Chrome on
iOS too. Fingers crossed they aren’t private APIs.
I don’t write Go, but if
I did, I’d use Chime:
Our whole philosophy is fewer features, built with more
polish. Attention to detail and thoughtful design is what
Chime is all about.
What a breath of fresh air!
…and while I’m reminiscing about RSS apps: Pulp by Acrylic Software was
beautiful. They also made Wallet, which I
Back in the day I used Caffeinated for Google
Reader. The same guy that did that app is behind IconJar. Neat!
I keep up with things that interest me by subscribing to
blogs on the internet. For this I use a service called
Feedbin, which aggregates
all my feeds in one place and keeps them up-to-date.
Next I use a feed
reader called Unread on my
iPhone and iPad to actually read through all those blog
posts. And when I’m at my Mac, I use NetNewsWire.
Here are some other great feed readers for macOS and
looks like a great way to bootstrap a new macOS app.
When people sign their emails with a single initial, I
imagine they must either be really busy or really
rumored ARM Macs on the horizon, it is a good time to
reflect on how Apple has
handled technology transitions over the years.
While reading about
a nifty way to do CI-like things via GitHub Actions, I
learned that with a bit of hoop-jumping,
Catalyst apps on macOS can use all the power of
What a nice rabbit hole to happen down!
Wise words by Reda
If you are just starting out as a UI designer, learn to
ignore design trends.
^D deletes forward. How did I not know
I just wrote about why I hate Medium,
so while I’m all in a rage, let me rag on Slack.•••
Too many good writers, articles and thoughts have been
sucked into that siloed black
Ok, the site isn’t new as in design or content, but the
underlying tech is. I guess it is also a little late to be
writing a new-year post. Oh well…•••
Software tends to march steadily downhill as it
accumulates more and more features (read crap). I
think one good way to fight the bloat, especially in a
corporate environment, is to remember that your
project/feature is not the most important thing.
Driving that one home is not easy, but it is critical if
you are to preserve the software’s integrity.
On the subject of using math to justify design choices, I
Butterick’s stance × 1.61803398875:
The risk with these shortcuts is that they encourage
typographers to satisfy themselves with numerical
justifications—I used the golden ratio, therefore it
must look good!—at the expense of developing visual
judgment. When your headings look right, they are
right—and if so, the ratio matters not a whit.
It’s always felt narrow to say that design is
problem-solving; there’s more to it than that. Design can
inform, yet that very often needs to begin by seducing.
That’s the aspect of design I find most fascinating.
Sometimes I feel guilty about focusing on aesthetics, but
that is silly. Lest we forget, form and function are
both important aspects of design. Two sides of the same
thoughts on habits and how important it is to be
cognizant of all the little tendencies that govern our
informative article by Martin Pilkington about the
features of AppKit and the ways in which it differs from
I sincerely hope the power we’ve enjoyed on the Mac isn’t
lost with Marzipan.
Good work is grounded in an attention to detail and
knowledge of and respect for the materials. The more
experience I gain, the truer this proves itself. Pay
attention, respect the material, listen to how it guides
you, and be gentle. You’ll be surprised by what you can do
and how flexible it all can be.
This reminds me of another piece by him, “The Web’s
Grain”, which talks about design that respects the
Come to think of it, this also reminds me of his article
Screens Want”. Am I sensing a trend here?
Living in Paris has changed me. The fast pace, pride and
hardness that comes from living in a tourist-filled city has
begun to rub off. It’s been a slow, creeping change, but sure
enough I recognize myself a little less when I stop and
Slow down. Smile at a stranger. That’s who you are.
Being able to peak under the hood, tinker and figure out
how it all worked was what got me started as a web developer.
Come to think of it, it is still how I learn and work. I’m
afraid we might be losing some of that, however.•••
great article by Martin Pilkington, covering much of the
breadth of UI controls available in AppKit. Also,
this article by Brent Simmons does a great job of
describing the value in using stock interface elements.
words to remember by Frank Chimero:
You don’t get to decide the truth. Other people have
their own experiences, just as valid. This is easy to
forget. Your slice of life seems so large and
unmistakeable, but it is your job to not confuse your small
piece for the whole. Life is big—much bigger than just
yours. This is the only note to self: other people are
real. That’s all there is to learn.
Mac Open Web: “a
collection of open and indie Mac, iOS, and web apps that help
promote the open web.”
Hi, I’m Pete and this is my little corner
of the internet. Today marks the first day of its existence—I
hope there are many more to come.•••