It’s our first experiment in paid software. For the low low price of $0.99 you can get all the functionality (or intentional non-functionality) of the original Writer.app, but support a small software shop by doing so.
It’s like the local, organic, sustainable version of getting and using software — the tool will still help you stay on track by focusing on the words to come, rather than the words past, and you’ll feel amazing for helping a very very small development shop.
As a blessed App Store app we can’t create a network location which will shut off all internet access for you any more, so we have a tool, which you should only have to run once, to do that, called the Empty Network Location Creator. It will guide you through the process of creating a very productive Network Location, or do it for you. Write-O-Matic 9000, like it’s predecessor, will try and switch to this location before you start typing, to help you stay focused and away from the big bad internet.
One thing I wanted to do, once I figured out how the example he gave in the post above worked, was not have to type in all the random words I wanted as notes in a note in my Tinderbox file.
So what I did was use Tinderbox’s ability to run command line to grab a random word out of the built-in system dictionary. I couldn’t quite get the perl one-liner working inline, so what I did was I created a file called randomWord and put the following in it:
word=`perl -e 'open IN, "</usr/share/dict/words";rand($.) < 1 && ($n=$_) while <IN>;print $n'`
I made it executable and dumped it in /usr/bin.
Then, in my Word of the Day note in Tinderbox, I added the following in the Rule section of the note (modified slightly from Mark’s example – visible when you right-click on a note and choose to the Rename menu item):
And I was done. A daily word of the day from the built-in dictionary… now to just find the time to write in that Tinderbox file everyday…
Wow. Okay, so I may have ruined any (you know me) street gamer cred I may have had by just buying a Wii. But man oh man, was this one fun for our little lunchtime challenge session.
More than a quick half hour playing it will probably bring up a couple issues or problems, but since we have approximately a half an hour every six to seven months to play video games, well, it’ll take long enough before those are born out.
I think I’ve mentioned it before (I have), but if you’re a Boston area Mac developer you’re really sitting pretty at the moment. There sure is a lot of interest in Mac developers coming across my wire these days.
A handy tool for testing services in your app is in the good old LaunchServices framework: /System/Library/Frameworks/ApplicationServices.framework/Frameworks/LaunchServices.framework/Support/lsregister -f
Running it without flags will print out usage info… a great tool to save you time logging in and out.
Why do I say we are unhappy?
• Our scientific conferences are filled with papers that focus on incremental improvements observed when asking unskilled laborers (whom we call “novices”) to perform office chores. We call this “usability”.
• Scholars interested in arts and humanities computing are strangely obsessed with box office and weirdly uninterested in making software, or making meaning.