Archive for December 12, 2012

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Google’s Lost Social Network

Rob Fishman:

In the year since, Google+ has been derided as a “virtual ghost town” and a “complete failure” unpopular even with Google employees. All of which has heightened the resentment shared by Reader fanatics. Today, they are a population dispossessed. Many have disappeared off the grid, while others struggle to rebuild communities that were, with a few keystrokes, deleted. All of them — the dental student in San Antonio, the academic librarian in Boston, the game developer in San Francisco — yearn for the scroll-tracked Shangri-La that was.

They wonder why Google deep-sixed superlative features, years in the making, for an upstart social network, a Facebook clone. In the year past, the same question has been framed and phrased in a thousand different ways — why force an unproven social network on users at the expense of an organic one?

Coda and Sandboxing

Cabel Sasser:

Your site’s “Local Root” will have to be reset. You’ll be prompted to do this the first time you try to connect. […] It will no longer be possible to “Go To” any local path by typing it in. “Go To Folder” on a Local path will now bring down a traditional “Choose” panel. […] If you click on a folder outside of your Local Root, you have to manually choose the folder via Choose panel.

This list of changes due to sandboxing sounds like pretty much the best that one could hope for. Panic is lucky to (apparently) not be running into any serious sandbox bugs or limitations for Coda. (My guess is that Transmit will be a different story.) It’s also worth noting that we are saying this now, more than a year after the original sandboxing deadline. In November 2011, I don’t think it would have been possible to sandbox Coda without it constantly bringing up “Choose” dialogs.

The Unlikely Persistence of AppleScript

John Gruber:

What makes it so surprising that AppleScript survived and remains a fully-supported-by-Apple technology today (including in OS X Mountain Lion) is that it was never loved by anyone. It was a fine theory and noble experiment, but it turns out that an English-like programming language didn’t really enable a large number of users to become programmers. And conversely, AppleScript’s English-like syntax often made (and to this day continues to make) things more difficult and confusing for scripters, not less.

Clark Goble:

Numbers has partial Applescript support but you can’t even create a document in a straightforward way. Preview doesn’t support Applescript at all. Safari has some Applescript support but one wishes it was more extensive. Third party apps have slowly been drifting away from Applescript — often choosing to use their own Javascript scripting if they support scripting at all.

Flickr for iPhone 2.0

It’s nice to see that Flickr’s app is still under development. However, the update seems more geared towards taking and posting photos. I do all my posting from Aperture, so the Flickr app doesn’t offer much more for way that I currently use Flickr on iOS, which is as a viewer. It still runs at iPhone size on an iPad. It doesn’t offer caching or pre-loading, so I can’t use it to show people my photos without waiting a long time for them to load. And it doesn’t support AirPlay, so sending the photos to an Apple TV shows them at tiny resolution, and with all of the app’s chrome. Fortunately, FlickStackr is pretty good.