1Password 4 for OS X – a few days later.

I wrote about 1Password 4, before the weekend, and thought I might want to revisit it after spending some real time with the application. And not just the 20 minutes, right before I wrote the piece.

There is two features in this release I really love: the audit section, and the menubar version of the application.

Audit. What the audit section is doing for you, is to tell you all of the password you should change. I really love this. Like I wrote in my previous post; you could do it with smart folders. But, I think a lot more people is going to use this. Because, its right there. It takes you one click to see all your weak passwords. Or three clicks to get an overview of passwords that have not been changed in everything from six months to over three years.

You also have a dupicate section. This will display every account where you use the same password as somewhere else. This might not look that big. But, trust me – it is. It was a major pain in the ass to do this with version three. You had to configure every different password you used as a “standard” as a smart folder.

Menubar. I did not expect to use this one that much. But, I was wrong. Most of the times when I start 1Password, it is to just copy some password to somewhere outside the browser. And its amazing to be able to do this from the menubar.

Its one of these productivity hacks, where three clicks becomes one.

And still, 1Password 4 is a solid upgrade, and everyone should upgrade as soon as they can afford to.

Sent from my iPad

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1Password 4 for OS X.

1Password is one of the most used apps across both my iOS and OS X devices. I never log into anything without going into 1Password on my iPhone and iPad; and rarely without using either browser plugins or the app on OS X.

This is one of the apps that I think should be included on any Mac or iOS device. This statement may be bold and I understand if you are sceptic regarding password management apps. To put it like this, 1Password is the only password management app that I have been able to stick with.

Design

They have refreshed the design of their apps in this release, to match up with the same refresh they did with the iOS update a few months back. And it was about time they did this, both the OS X and iOS versions looked dated prior to their 4.0 releases.

I don’t think there is anything controversial in this release. Everyone who used the old version will recognize it; and like always: all new users will love both the app and the design.

1Password mini / Menubar item.

I have a yes, or no reliationship to menubar items. I think they are better than having apps in the dock that you need to have running all the time. And they are amazing for stuff you need to access quick; like dropbox, twitter clients etc. And this is a great new feature from 1Password.

Audit section

This is the feature I have been craving in 1Password since I started using it in 2010(or 2011, I dont remember exactly when). This is just brilliant. It have a few key, and very important features: – List of all passwords that are not unique in your 1Password database. – Passwords that have not been changed in 3+ years, 1-3 years and 12-6 months. – Weak passwords

This alone would get me to upgrade. I can in just a few clicks right out of the box get a great overview of all the passwords I should change.

iCloud vs Dropbox

I have not tested the iCloud sync, and I’m not sure if I am going to do it. There is one very good reason for this.

There have been a few situations where I’ve had some real issues with iCloud document storage. The result was that none of the applications was able to upload or download anything from iCloud. And every time this happened I had to go through a few levels of Apple support to get it sorted out.

This could in theory happen in Dropbox. But, dropbox is a much more open system. And I have a script that makes a copy from Dropbox to my local machine, every day. This means that I still have the data if Dropbox locks me out.

There is probably a way to do this in iCloud, but I dont want to do anything regarding my passwords and other important information in a unsupported way. 1Password might have a export option. Anyway, this is a part of my “dont store anything extermly important in iCloud”.

I recomend people to use Dropbox, if you need sync; and remember to have routines for making copies of it to a local location if you do sync.

Check out 1Password herehere. You will find a trial versionn for the mac version there. They also have a windows version and an android reader app.

Sent from my iPad

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Test

First thing I posted directly from Editorial

Sent from my iPad

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Editorial is awesome

Yesterday was the day where I finally went and started to play around wth Editorial. I find it hard to describe it, but it’s one amazing piece of software. I would not call it MarsEdit for iPad. But, I would rather call it the first programmable text editor for iOS. And maybe the first one that get these things right; and yes, I would love to have it on my Mac.

The thing I really love about editorial compared to both MarsEdit and TextMate is that it does not have build in support for anything, other than dropbox syncing, a browser, and some basic markdown tools, and some other basic stuff. But what you have is a very easy to use framework for build workflows, that can do more or less anything, that you would like a editor like Editorial to do.

One of the things I really love about this thing is how easy it was for me to set it up to email new posts to this Squarespace 6 blog, only in a few clicks No copy and paste; just two clicks!

If you use squarespace, and want to do the same thing, check out this workflow. The only thing you have to do is to find your squarespace blog email address and paste it into the workflow. You can see how to enable and find your squarespace email address here.

I think Editorial is the first product where things is way batter on iOS than anything you can find for OS X.

And check out Viticci’s book about editorial.

Sent from my iPad

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Do Apples AppStore restriction lead to better software?

This is one of the questions I have been asking myself for a very long time. One side of me, the hacker want to be able to do all of the crazy stuff I have on my mac. Like Alfred. Or to just run a simple script to rename all .txt files in my [nvalt] folder to .md. But on the other side, do I really need this?

I have been aware of both [Editorial] and [Pythonista] for quite a while. I knew everyone I respect on the internet(or at least most of them) love it. I knew I should give it a try. But, like most apps, it takes some time before I get around to do something about it. And after spending a half hour reading @viticci’s [book] about it, and maybe ten minutes in the editor itself(including writing this article) I realised how awesome it is. I want this on my mac.

But, back to the main topic. Does the App store restrictions lead to better software? I’ve had this teory for quite some time. For one, unlike on OS X, you cant do what ever you want to on iOS. One part of it is the hardware and software restrictions themselves, while others are restrictions that Apple have put in place to make the experience of the device as a whole better.

The other part of it is the security aspect. We know that there have not been many “malware” apps, in the iOS app store. This is one of the great thing about the sandboxing thing. We know that each app have to be tested by apple, and that it is only allowed to mess around with their own files.

Lets say if Rdio have a bug that deletes everything; well this means you have to re-sync your music and maybee re-create your playlists. Buts thats it. You would never know what kind of implications that would have if you had the same issue with a OS X application.

But, back to my point. I think App Store restrictions not just will, but is leading us to better software. Editorial is a prime example of this. For one they are leading to better solutions for handling issues we did in the simplest way possible before.
 There is just one important thing here. Apple have to get better at giving developers more tools for handling their current issues; like for example inter-app communication. But, dont give what we ask for, give us what we really need.

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iCloud

I’ve had quite a few iCloud issues during the last month, something that made me think about the real problems with iCloud. And they are not what you might think, but more a result of it.

Contacting support.

The key most important thing, is to make sure that you can re-produce your issue in an Apple application. This is very important. Because, you will be caught between Apple and the third-party developer, if you can’t do it. The third party, can’t help you; and Apple won’t.

My problems.

So, my problem was that nothing, that use iCloud could upload or download data. This was everything from DayOne and ByWord to Numbers and Pages.

But, backups, calendar and contacts worked as expected.

This is bad!

Why Dropbox is better.

Here is the basic principle. I expect that my account here stuck in some way. And that Apple have very bad tools to debug these kinds of issues.

So, let’s say I was caught in the same kind of situation with Dropbox, and I had everything stored there synced to my Macbook Air(which I have). And I decided that I was tired of arguing with support. Then I could just move my data over to another folder. Delete my account. Create a new account. And move the files back over. Re-configure all of my devices that use Dropbox.

Closed containers.

Apple is the only ones that can do anything about this problem. Their approach is cleaner, but harder. Dropbox is more of a hack, a hack that works, but shouldn’t. It works and everyone from developers to medium computer savvy users understand the basic principles.

iCloud works great for a few uses. But, I will move everything off, iCloud if this happens once more. And I will also make sure that everything is ready to be moved off iCloud by the end of this week.

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Publishing, social networks, rss and websites.

I am in the process of trying to move a lot of my content from simple blogposts into more of a collection of larger web-sites on my site. And this introduces a lot of issues.

I really wish there was a good way to tell your rss subscribers that you just updated some of your content, other than blog posts.

They way squarespace, wordpress and most related publishing platforms are handling this is by not doing it. Which means you can do two things: You can do Nothing, or making a blog-post that are informing your users about it.

Both of them sucks. The former means that no-one knows about it, and the later means that you are creating double the traffic; which is bad for your advertisers etc.

We need some way to push updated content into RSS and twitter / app.net publishing tools!

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iOS7; amazing new versions of apps I love.

Last night was the night; everyone else in the world got access to the new and shiny version of Apples iOS. I have been using it since the first developer preview.

I don’t want to waste your time on the OS itself; but I want to mention a few apps that I love, that have been reworked for iOS7.

  • Instacast

  • Instapaper

  • Byword

  • Left to spend

This is four very different apps, all of them was installed yesterday, and all of them are apps that I use almost every time I unlock my phone.

Instacast is my go to podcatcher – or podcast client. It have been for a long time, and I have written about it many times. The new look and feel is right; it’s iOS 7. It also brings some of the new background update features. I really look forward to spending some time and to get up to speed on all of the new features.

Instapaper is probably the app I have spent the most time in since I got my first iOS device. I really love it. The new release is just a UI update for the old app. So, my understanding is that it don’t include any new features. But, the new look is new, fresh but still familiar.

Both Instapaper and Instacast is apps that I have been using every day for so many years that it is close to impossible or at least very hard for me to change.

Byword is my go to writing app. I am in fact writing this blog post in Byword for mac. And I often do some editing, reviewing and even writing of blog posts on my iPhone. They did do a version 2.0 a few months back, and this release is more or less just a interface update to make it look good on iOS7.

I didn’t think the previous version looked any bad. Not at all. But, this release looks amazing.

Left to spend is not something I expect most people to know a lot about. But, it is a app I picked up on Patrick Rhone’s podcast Enough. It’s the only budget app that have ever worked for me.

You set a daily allowance, and then you just add any expense to the app. No labels or categories; just figure out how much money you can use every day, and just add every expense. Simple, elegant and brilliant.

I did not expect this app to be updated. I think the previous version of this app was from released when we went from iOS 3 to 4 or something like this. But, I really love that the developer updated it. Because, some of the functionality was broken and this is the kind of app I would have to develop myself if the developer did not step up and release an update to.

Like all the other’s, this app also released a full re-design. And like all the others, it looks amazing on iOS7.

Omni Focus 2 for iPhone is the easter egg. I don’t even know where to start.

First of all, the design looks amazing, but it is bold. I don’t think everyone will like it at first glance.

Second. The new app is cleaner better – and the inclusion of background sync is major – at least for me.

I have not used OF on iPhone at lot for the last six months. It have been major pain to have to wait for the database to sync each time I used the app. This was one of the reasons for moving stuff like my shopping list away from my phone and over to paper.

This update might solve this issue.

Mach 2. This, feels like the second coming of the App store. And I do think that many of my current iPhone apps, that is not updated to the new look at feel during the next few weeks, might find themselves replaced, very soon.

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NSA.

Like most other geeks, and regular people that are conserned with security and privacy – I am looking into what I am going to do with the data I am storing in the cloud.

There is more or less two different places where I store a lot of data; Dropbox and iCloud. And a few places I store some data, OmniPrecense and Evernote.

First of all. I do not believe that neither the NSA or any of my cloud services provider would have any interest in my data. And secondly I do trust Dropbox, Apple and Google as much as you should trust a major company.

This is not about me doing anything secret. This is not about me not trusting big american companies. This is about principles.

So I started the process of figuring out what to do here, a few days ago. Or I started thinking about it in abstract ways many weeks ago. But, the doing part started yesterday.

The first question that popped into my head was: what the hell am I storing in the cloud? Dropbox: – 1Password keychain – More or less any file I have, or had for the last three years.

iCloud: – iOS backups – DayOne-data – And some other minor apps.

The next thing I started thinking about was: what should I do about this? And I’m not too sure yet. But, what I am going to do is to move everything that I do not have to store there away from Dropbox.

There is just three things I need to store on Dropbox: – 1Password – nvAlt textfiles – Files I share from my site, and files too large for e-mail.

iCloud is another story. The stuff I store there is already the bare minimum. So, there is not much I can or will do about it.

Problem. The problem with dropbox is that there is no “end-to-end” encryption. Example: I use backblaze to backup all of my files; but the only person in the world with access to my files there is me, from my account.

Dropbox is not doing this, because of their fancy web-frontend and all of that.

Solutions. There is not a lot of cheap and viable solutions for me right now. But, I will consider getting into (Transporter)[http://www.filetransporter.com] later.

I really hate having to remove 99% of my stuff from Dropbox, and I think I need to invest in some extra external drive and to upgrade my “On-site” backup plan beacuse of it.

Let’s see what the future brings us.

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Why is important.

I was chatting with someone on facebook this morning, and suddenly I realised something. To say something, without any context or information around why you believe or think something have to be one of the least interesting things in the world (right after religious belief).

When someone is saying something, I usually prefer to figure out they why and how before I start arguing with them. I’m not perfect with this myself, but I try to do this when I do write something. It does not matter what you think about something or someone as long as you can give a solid reason for stating it.

For example, if I write a piece about some new fancy writing app. Then I would start by writing what is good about it. And how it’s different from all of the other 100 000 iOS or OS X writing apps out there. And I would also write if I would be using it, and why I would / would not do so.

This is what good writing is all about.

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