Tag Archives: software

Testing a new version of the WordPress iPad app

Hurray! A new version of the iPad WordPress application is out. So, I thought I’d better give it a try and so I am writing this post with it.

My earlier issues with the program (read the post where I made those comments) are largely still here.

The local draft can be saved, but the option to move it up to the server is still somewhat hidden.

They’ve fixed the copy/paste issues which makes it a bit more livable.

Still, the only way to get images in the post is to have them inserted at the end and I guess you get to copy and move the HTML around to move the images. And, vie been using the caption option more often on the web version of the software and I can’t find a way to do that here.

And lastly, there’s still no visual editor and therefore you still have to type HTML for links etc manually.

So, overall, tho there are a few bugs fixed, the biggest issues for me still exist and therefor, thie only way to use WordPress on the iPad is still with safari.

This might work for some folks, but with as many things as I do with WordPress and posts with images, this just won’t work for me yet.

planetMitch

The WordPress app for the iPad

Ok, many of you may not have a need for a WordPress app unless you’re a blogger. But since I’m a blogger, I tried the WordPress for iPad application out and unfortunately I’m disappointed. I wanted to be able to use it exclusively away from this darn computer, but it isn’t quite there yet.

In my blogs, I use themes from woothemes and I didn’t really expect the WordPress app to be able to handle the special features of the themes, and I wasn’t upset when it didn’t. However, for me to really use the app, I would need to have more functionality in handling the images for the woopress themes. I’m using “Busy Bee” (from woothemes) for this blog and my planet5D blog and each post gets a special image – and there’s a field in the admin dashboard to upload that image – well, that whole functionality isn’t in the WordPress app (and again, I didn’t expect it to be there). So, for me, the only way to really use the iPad for blogging is to use the dashboard in Safari. But that requires an Internet connection.

I tried using the WP app to create a blog post offline – and it did indeed let me create a blog post and saved it ‘locally’ to my iPad. But guess what? I had a hard time figuring out how to move the post off of the iPad and to move it up to the Internet where my blog is hosted! After many minutes trying to find out how to move the local version up there – and it turns out that there is a hidden options there where the status of the post is displayed. Tap on it and you get the option to save it on the server. That wasn’t exactly intuitive.

And, even worse, they’ve implemented the ability to select text (because the only way I could think of to move my new blog post up to the net was to copy and paste it into safari) but once you select the text, there isn’t a ‘copy’ button to tap on! I had no way to take the text I’d typed and save it other than a local blog post. Maybe I missed something (which is entirely possible) but I was darn frustrated!

I was indeed pleased to learn that I could insert photos, but alas, the current version only inserts them at the end of the post! You can’t embed them inside the text.

And of course, the last nail in the coffin for me is really two things – one, you don’t have the ‘visual’ editor you have on the web dashboard (which fills in HTML stuff for you automatically – bold, heading font sizes etc) and then once you have the post typed up, there’s a preview mode, but alas, it reports “the theme for your blog could not be retrieved” and then just displays a simple text version of your post.

There are some good things and I do expect that they’ll improve the app soon (heck it is free after all!). It is great to have one application to handle the blogs I run away from the computer. They did include a good set of features for managing comments that come in (I moderate all the comments on all blogs – you just never know what garbage might come in!).

Hopefully, in the near future, we’ll get some updates to improve the functionality and this will become more viable, but for now, I’m having to pass on the WordPress app for iPad.

planetMitch

(Photo credit: snap from the WordPress site)

CEO of salesforce.com with a great article about the “Cloud 2” and the iPad

Marc Benioff (ceo of salesforce.com) has contributed a very intriguing article to TechCrunch about the future of computing and the iPad.

This is one of the most intriguing portions to me:

“Last week I gave presentations to more than 60 CIOs in various meetings throughout America’s heartland. My message to them: We are moving from Cloud 1 to Cloud 2, and the iPad is the accelerator. Many of them haven’t even made it to Cloud 1—some are still on mainframes. They are working on MVS/CICS, or Lotus Notes, and they have never heard of Cocoa, or even that there is now HTML 5. This is unacceptable. The next generation is here. The iPad that shows us what now is really possible—and that we all need to go faster. Unfortunately, some CIOs would rather retire than go faster.”

Many application developers have been talking about “Web 2.0” for the past 4-5 years – with rich Internet applications (RIA) and apps written in AJAX and Flash/Flex – but this new ‘touch’ user interface will extend that a great deal. I can’t wait!

While I hope he really doesn’t think the UI for Facebook is the way to go, he and I agree that the iPad will “inspire a new generation of wildly innovative new apps” and you must go read his article now!

planetMitch

(Photo credit: snap from the story)

Should the iPad include something like HyperCard?

One of the things that I’ve been wondering a lot lately is how in the world can I learn how to write an application for the iPad in a hurry because I have all these ideas in my head that need to come out. It is one thing to already know how to crank out iPad code, it is another to try to figure out how to use Apple’s development tools and to think about the daunting task of getting your application thru the approval process and then finally out to the user community. Apple’s two known solutions are to write an application with their tools or to simply create a website with HTML and the like (which doesn’t require approvals because you would get to it thru Safari on the iPad).

And today, I found this article proposing a tool like HyperCard needs to be included with the iPad. HyperCard was simple. I used it a lot back in the 80’s and early 90’s. I even taught a class for the local Mac user group for a while. Altho HyperCard was incredibly useful, there were still some I think who didn’t get it and it was killed by Apple (Steve). There was also a lot of stuff created that wasn’t very useful or very elegant. But that didn’t mean it was bad, but some may have perceived it as being so. The thing about HyperCard was that it allowed non-programmers to develop their own applications without having to know how to program. It even taught many the ideals of object oriented programming.

I doubt however that it is going to happen. I believe Apple wants the truly elegant solutions to come to the iPad and those should be written by folks who know user interface design and programming.

So, if you’re interested, please read Dale Dougherty’s article over on O’Reilly Radar. There are lots of interesting comments there as well!

planetMitch

(Photo credit: snap from the Wikipedia entry for HyperCard)

A couple of ‘organization’ tool announcements for iPad

Following up on our post about ‘getting organized’ – today, Cultured Code, creators of Things announced a version for the iPad.

I guess this is no real surprise, but it is good to hear. Maybe I will indeed force myself to work with Things again.

“Finally, one other arrival that is approaching very quickly is the iPad version of Things. We’ll have more to share with you about it once April 3rd gets closer, so stay tuned. :)”

Interestingly, reading the comments on their page, there’s a clamoring for “cloud syncing” – which makes sense. I would like to be able to have my data on all my devices automatically sync’d and not have to manually make it happen.

Also, the Evernote crew has announced they will be adding iPad support. “Evernote loves tablets. We’ve got a long and storied history with tablets of all kinds. Got an old tablet lying around somewhere? Chances are we either developed technology for it, had applications that ran on it, or both. Usually both.
Remember the awesome Apple Newton? Evernote’s current R&D engineers developed the handwriting recognition technology that made it so notable (and ahead of its time). Remember those Doonesbury strips making fun of the Newton? You know who cried when those came out? We did. Well, not me personally, I was in college and the Newton was at the top of my unattainable gadget drool-list, but the guys sitting next to me right now clutching their Newton prototypes while watching the Apple liveblogs did. I’ve got those Donnesbury strips in my Evernote account now.”

I’m sure there are a bunch more announcements from products I’m not even familiar with yet, but those are two that I have been following so far. More later I’m sure.

planetMitch

(Photo credit: snap from the CC website)