This my my fifth annual roadmap blog posts. Time really flys. You can find the last year’s post here.

Year in Review

This year is was not only working on Fiery Feeds, but I also tried to bring my other two, somewhat neglected, apps back up to speed. You can see a complete list of all recent updates on the new changelogs page.

All in all, I shipped 7 feature updates, and 31 updates in total across all three apps.

Fiery Feeds

Fiery Feeds is still my primary focus, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. There’s also going to be an anniversary this year, Fiery Feeds 1.0 on the 10. Oct 2013, almost a decade ago. I would have never though I’d still be working on this app ten years later, but here we are. On to the next decade.

New Feed Management

Likely the biggest feature this year was the entirely re-written subscribe flow and Safari extension, and the all around much faster feed management.

Merged iCloud Accounts

Second biggest change, even if not all that exciting, is the updated iCloud sync for feed and read later accounts. Fiery Feeds dropped support for multiple accounts of the same type within the same iCloud account, and the update had to merge any existing accounts into the new container. This worked quite smoothly, and lays the groundwork for the next performance improvements for iCloud sync.

Shared Subscription

The paid-up-front Fiery Feeds for macOS app is more. I only sold it as a standalone app, because in the first 6 months of Catalyst the App, when it was released, the App Store did not support shared subscriptions between iOS and macOS apps. The switch to a shared subscription needed to be done at some point, and with this out of the way, I’ll be able to focus on feature again.

Lock Screen Widgets

Naturally Fiery Feeds supports the new lockscreen widgets in iOS 16 as well. You can show an article (latest or random, and it changes every couple of minutes), or the unread count of an account of your choice. Either in the slot above or below the time.

Upgraded Notifications

I also upgraded the article notifications. Better included actions, grouped by feed and a complete preview of the article when you view the details, powered by the native rendering engine. Some of the actions, like marking articles read or starred should even work when mirroring the notifications to your Apple watch (for those who keep asking me about an Apple Watch app).

Tidur Timers

The multi timer app Tidur Timers also switched to a shared subscription between the iOS and macOS version. I’ve re-written large parts of the iCloud syncing code, which should work now reliable between iOS, macOS and watchOS.

New Widgets

With the limited things allowed to do in homescreen widgets, it was quite a challenge, but I’ve added widget for the next active timers or specific timers, The same widgets are also available for the lockscreen on iOS 16.

Dozzzer

I’ve moved my oldest app, Dozzzer, also to a subscription model. After almost 3 years not working on it, I can finally say it’s in active development again and all known bugs are fixed. It’s maybe more nostalgia to keep Dozzzer alive, it was my first successful app, and my first app being featured by Apple, almost 12 years ago.

Dark Mode

Being an app for drifting of to sleep, it always had a pretty dark interface, but I’ve added another extra dark mode, when the system dark mode is enabled.

Soundscapes

Slight tweaks to all the existing soundscapes, plus the new soundscapes for brown noise, Mountain Creek, Rainy Undergrowth, Lush Forrest, Hawaian Waves and Stormy Cliffs. (I like fanciful names)

External App List

Since Dozzzer can fade out the system volume and stop third party apps, I’ve added handy shortcuts to some better known audio apps right from the external music screen.

Going Forward

Last year I tried – and failed – doing large, completely planned out feature updates. I’ve given up on that by the middle of the year and changed my approach. I’m no longer working at one update at a time (I spend a long time doing just bug fix updates, and putting off working on new features until all the bugs are fixed), instead I’m doing the old main/develop branches and will just release a feature update whenever there’s enough new stuff to make it worth an update. I think this will mean fast, and more, but smaller feature updates for all apps.

Fiery Feeds

The things I want to work for Fiery Feeds are the following, in roughly that order. I’ve already started work on the per feed settings, and I expect to ship it in the next 1-2 months, but I’ve learned not to promise any specific dates in software development.

Per Feed Settings

Ability to set more options on a per feed basis, including sort order, notification settings, number of articles to keep, image caching, and so forth.

Advanced Saved Searches

Advanced saved searches with multiple parameters, think of iTunes’ smart playlists, but for articles, and based on those saved searches, one search per account, that automatically marks articles as read. For example articles older than a specific time or articles containing a specific keyword.

Mac Redesign

I still want to do Mac-first redesign of pretty much the entire app, rewrite the feed and article list based on the lastest APIs, system sidebar, system toolbar, multi selection in the article list, dragging articles to tags to tag them and all the other expected behaviours for macOS apps. This will probably bring some improvements to the iOS as well, but I think the general layout of the iOS app doesn’t need too much change.

  • Drag & Drop
  • Multi selection
  • Browser extension
  • Statusbar icon

I’m not sure there’s really going to be a big 3.0 (even if that would be nice).
I’ll probably ship these features one by one instead, as far as possible, to avoid long stretches of no updates.

Tidur Timers

Live Activities

After adding new widgets, live activities are only the logical next step. After all, Apple’s timer app can do that too.

SwiftUI Rewrite

Tidur has always been the app I try out know technology. First watch app, first time I’ve used Swift, first time CloudKit sync. I want to at the very least re-write the watch app in SwiftUI, and probably bring some SwiftUI into the main app as well. I like the way the widgets look, and I can imagine using this design in the main app too.

Spotlight Search

The idea is to start existing timers right from Spotlight, the way you can start music in the Music app. Might also be interesting for Fiery Feeds, but I think Tidur is a good place to try implementing it first.

Dozzzer

Dozzzer is in a pretty good state now, and is not going to require too many changes to the general app.

More Soundscapes + Cover Art

I do plan on to keep adding new soundscapes regularly though. Also having cover art on the now playing screen for each would be pretty neat.

Design Update

Again, I don’t think it needs too much change, but I want to bring back the rounded time dial from pre 4.0 days. Just look how pretty it used to be.

The second feature update of the year. Some overdue features, that have been on my todo list for too long, but with those out of the way, next up will be proper per-feed settings and advanced saved searches.

Also this is the first update where all new code is Swift, and even a few of the existing parts were re-written in Swift. By now it should be stable enough to actually work with it. ;)

Notifications

The article notifications have gotten a bunch of new features. They can now be grouped by feed in the notification center, include preview images, you can long press them to get a full preview of the article (thanks to the native rendering), and they have mark read/mark starred/quick share options directly from the notification center (or Apple Watch).

There is also a new option to show a notification for a random article every couple of hours. I like to use this to remind me about articles in my somewhat neglected read later queue.



Notifications are only going to get more interesting once proper per-feed settings are available.

iCloud Changes

I’ve removed the ability to have multiple, separate, iCloud based feed and read later accounts. You can now only have one iCloud Feed account and one iCloud Read Later account. This removes the need to “import” the accounts on other devices, because I’ve seen many people having problems with iCloud based accounts because of this.

Additionally, I’ve removed the iCloud based settings backup, in favour of a simple backup file for your settings, which also includes per-feed settings now. You can still save it to iCloud Drive, but you can have multiple versions, and do everything with it, that you can do with files. I love the flexibility of regular files.

These changes took me the longest time – and they aren’t exiting in any way, but at least they’re finally done.

Other Changes

  • Other smaller changes include OPML/HTML List import and export for all accounts, not just local and iCloud based ones.
  • New options for sorting articles in the article list, including by title.
  • Clearer options which elements of the article should be shared.

You can find the full changelog here: http://blog.cocoacake.net/archives/1811

Version 2.6 is the first feature update in 2022, the most visible changes are a new share extension, and some interface modernisations in the app.

But it also includes a very big under the hood change, which fixes the most common crash, which in turn vastly improves how well the app restores it’s state when you return to it. (In technical terms: The user data is moved back to the app sandbox, from a shared container which the share extension, widgets and Siri Shortcuts could access. This required mostly re-writing the widgets and completely rewriting the share extension and Siri Shortcuts support. But at least it’s done now, this has been on my todo list for years.)

It seems the overall theme for this update is small changes, that require way more work than expected.

New share extension

The new share extension gives you the account, feed, folder and tag selection on a single screen, with the default account being configurable simply be reordering the account list in the app. This means saving an article or subscribing to a new feed is now a one tap action, instead of a three step process as it was before.

For most web based services the new article or feed are immediately pushed to the service, but for local accounts – since it can’t access the main data – this now happens when you launch the main app the next time.

Interface update

The same new interface is also available inside the main app, of course. But I didn’t stop there. There are new dialogs for creating new folders, new tags, or editing folders, tags or feeds.


The New Folder screen allows you to create a new folder and simply select all feed feeds you want in this folder right there. It’s also now possible to do this right from the main list, since many users did not find the new folder option in the “move feed screen”. It’s still possible to add new folders when assigning folders to a specific feed too of course.
The new Feed Details screen combines renaming the feed, exposing the feed url and site url – which is also new – and assigning folders, which was the previous move feed screen.
Editing a folder allows the reverse, i.e. assigning feeds to a specific folder or renaming the folder, and the new Edit Tag screen works the same way with articles.

Additionally there are some other UI modernisations, like the inset grouped style in much of settings and edit screens, and the macOS app now uses the “Optimised for Mac” style, that is it no longer scales down an iPad size apps, but renders everything in the correct size, which required adjusting each button, label and other element on screen to be a bit smaller, otherwise the app would look comically large on Macs. But it has the advantage of some AppKit style elements like the checkboxes in settings, and more importantly the text should be much less blurry, especially on non-retina displays.

New feed management sync code

Related to the new feed management UI, there are also many changes to the sync code to each of the now 20 supported sync services. All feed management changes are now applied to the local database after pushing them to the services, without needing the annoying sync after every change. Not a huge change by itself, but I kept putting it off, because doing the change for each service, 20 times in total was quite a bit of work.

This means that applying changes not only takes fewer steps in the UI, but also is simply faster.

Shared subscription

The second big new things, is the shared subscription. As I have already mentioned in my roadmap post, there is now a shared subscription for both iOS and macOS at a new price of €14.99/year.

Because the subscription is aimed at power users and unlocks the pro features, I took this opportunity to rename the subscription to Fiery Feeds Pro. This name change has no impact on existing subscriptions.

So what changes with the new subscription?

  • The old paid-up-front app is no longer available for purchase, but I will continue to provide updates to it until, but not including version 3.0.
  • If you’re new to Fiery Feeds, you can start a subscription for €14.99/year in either the iOS or macOS app and use it in both of them.
  • If you have an existing subscription, you can continue to use it, in both apps, for the price you’re subscribed at.

You can download the new macOS app here, and especially if you already have a subscription on iOS, I’d recommend switching to the new app now, so you don’t have to migrate your data once version 3.0 is released.

This is the fourth of my yearly roadmap blog posts. You can find the last year’s post here.

Looking back

The roadmap for 2021 may have been a bit overambitious, and combined with some changes in my day job, I was not as productive as I had hoped. While I did manage to ship 16 updates, including one large feature update, the rest of the planned big features pretty much move to this year.

Design Overhaul

Completely revamped the default themes, and moved more and more to SF Symbols.

Widgets

Full support for the new iOS home screen widgets, with 5 different types in 4 different sizes, including extra large for iPads.

Theme Editor

Added a full editor for custom themes, change the theme directory from a website to a native list, including previews, and added the required server support for users submitting their own themes.

More Settings

In addition to a bunch of new expert settings like opening all folders by default in the feed list, the “expert mode” which enables over 60 additional options in settings, can now easily be enabled/disabled in the general settings. And the searchbar in settings can find them even if expert settings are hidden.

Going forward

Since the last yearly plan changed so much, I’ll try to at least outline the next planned versions, without tying them to 2022 particularly. As always, the following is just a rough plan, and will probably change over the next year, but this is where things stand right now.

One of the biggest changes will be the switch to a combined subscription for iOS + macOS, since this is now supported by Apple. I’ll follow the same playbook, as I did when switching the iOS to subscription. The subscription based Mac app will be a separate download, and the one time purchase will continue to be available for a while, I’ll remove it from sale 3-6 months before the release of 3.0, but it will continue to receive up until 3.0. The subscription price will stay at $9.99 for a while as upgrade pricing before going up to $14.99 since it now includes the macOS app as well. Every subscriber will stay at their subscribed price until cancelled, so you can lock in a good deal before the price goes up.

Version 2.6

I’ve already been working on v2.6 for the past few months, and the planned features just kept growing. Everything up to 3.0 was originally planned for 2.6, but I’ve split it up into multiple releases, so I can get them out faster.

The first thing is a fix for the most common background crash (think >90% of all crashes), which required moving the local database back to the app container, which in turn required completely rewriting Siri Shortcuts and the sharing action for Safari.

Since I’m already re-doing on the new subscribe/save view, I decided to also redo all of the feed management code, which means all feed management operations will be much faster and will no longer require syncing for the changes to show up.

Version 2.6 will be the first version to be available on the shared subscription on macOS, and also finally drop the 70% scaling which is standard for Catalyst apps, but this also required me to go through the entire app, and adjust every view, every button to not be comically large on macOS, but it should lead to crisper text on macOS.

  • Fix the most common crash
  • Better feed management
  • Under the hood changes
  • No longer scaled on macOS
  • New Shared Subscription + Plan

Version 2.7

Version 2.7 is all about syncing, and especially the new services require the feed management changes from 2.6, to avoid doing too much work twice.

Improvements for TTRSS, FreshRSS, new services like Raindrop, miniflux or feeder. A re-structuring of the local database to improve performance with > 20.000 articles on device.

Better notifications, including an article preview (for individual article notifications), and options to star or mark the for reading later.

I’ll likely drop support for iCloud account settings and app settings sync in favour of json import/export. Since this will work more reliable and can be used as backup as well. The ability to sync feeds/read later will of course continue to exist, but will be limited to one feed and one read later account per iCloud account, since I’ve seen far too many users who set up multiple iCloud feed accounts by accident.

  • New Sync Services
  • iCloud improvements
  • Better notifications
  • App Settings json import export

Version 2.8

The advanced users update. Okay, with Fiery Feeds almost every update is for advanced users, but I wanted a tag line.

Ability to set more options on a per feed basis, including sort order, notification settings, number of articles to keep, image caching, and so forth.

Advanced saved searches with multiple parameters, think of iTunes’ smart playlists, but for articles, and based on those saved searches, one search per account, that automatically marks articles as read. For example articles older than a specific time or articles containing a specific keyword.

  • Per feed settings
  • Advanced searches
  • Auto read articles

Version 3.0

I’m already including version 3.0 here, and if all goes well, I might even start working on 3.0 in 2022, but I don’t expect a release this year.

It’s going to be a Mac-first redesign of pretty much the entire app, rewriting feed and article list based on the lastest APIs, system sidebar, system toolbar, multi selection in the article list, dragging articles to tags to tag them and all the other expected behaviours for macOS apps.

  • Drag & Drop
  • Multiselection
  • Browser extension
  • Statusbar icon
  • Mac First Redesign

Fiery Feeds 2.5 is the first feature release in 2021. The big one is widgets, but it also includes a complete rewrite of the font and theming system, which was long overdue. And with this version native rendering is now the default render mode for articles.

New Default Themes

The first thing you’ll probably notice are the two new default themes. The retain a slight blue shade and the red accent of the previous default theme, but they are overall much lighter and much darker, respectively. The old default themes haven’t changed much since version 1.0 almost 8 years ago.

New Widgets

The probably most requested feature are home screen widgets. The are widgets for single or multiple articles, single or multiple accounts and Hot Links, in all relevant sizes. You can even add multiple widgets of the same type and configure them individually.

And of course the widgets are fully configurable. You can pick the account/folder/feed you want to have displayed in the articles widget, and decide which articles you want displayed.

I’ve been meaning to do a random article widget for a long time, to suggest articles from my read later list every time I look at my phone. This was a good time to finally do it.

Theme Editor and User Theme Directory

I’ve cleaned the theme file structure up a bit. It is still a JSON file, but comments are no longer allowed inside the file and some of the keys have changed. The macOS version still has a few extra keys, but all other keys have been unified, and the new default themes are the same on both iOS and macOS. There are also no longer default values for each color, so every theme needs to contain a color for

I’m no longer documenting all of the used keys explicitly, but you can still read the file with an text editor (the keys are pretty self explainatory). The reason why, is because Fiery Feeds now finally includes an integrated theme editor, allowing you to modify your themes right inside the app.

In addition to the theme editor there is a new, completely native theme directory, and you can submit your own creations to the directory to share them with other users right from inside the app.

New Font Handling

And finally, even if it sounds like a simple change, but I’ve almost completely rewritten the font handling inside Fiery Feeds. This means that the app respects the default system font size (by default – you can still override it for each part of Fiery Feeds, like previously), and you can select any installed font, including fonts installed by third party apps.

This is the third of my yearly roadmap blog posts. You can find the last year’s post here.

Looking back

2020 was a complicated year for everyone, but I still managed to release 16 updates for Fiery Feeds iOS and macOS in total.

Mac Trial

It was the first thing on my list for 2020, and you can download it here: Fiery Feeds Trial

Full Text Search

Search everywhere. Full text search for articles. Search for settings, including otherwise hidden expert settings.

Also in version 2.4 a simple implementation of saved searches. It’s not yet the advanced iTunes smart playlist style saved searches, but a lot of things required are now in place for this to happen.

Native Article View

I’m still working on the native article renderer and fixing some edge cases here and there, but it is officially an option, and will become the default renderer in the next major update.

Performance

There were some performance fixes since 2.4 has been released and I am currently working on a few different more, as well as general code cleanup. Those changes will be part of the coming 2.4.x updates, that is, I want all of the known bottlenecks fixed before I start on the next feature release.

Planned 2021

The major features I’m planning to work on this year, roughly sorted by priority. As always, this is just a rough plan, not a guarantee that I’ll actually manage to implement all of them.

New Widget

iOS 14 and Big Sure brought support for new SwiftUI based widgets. Fiery Feeds already has a today widget, but the new widgets, while more limited in features, can be put on the Home Screen, which people seem to enjoy. I have some ideas for different kinds of widgets I want to support, but I do have to learn SwiftUI first, which feels like a big thing (most of Fiery Feeds is still Objective-C). Still, this is something for version 2.5.

New Services

Miniflux, Raindrop, Feeder.io, full FreshRSS (including feed management, i.e. using their Google Reader API) support. There’s a lot to do on the syncing side, even if it doesn’t sound like exciting new features.

Theming Improvements

A better (read native, instead of a website) in-app browser for themes, an in-app theme editor and a user directory of themes where anyone can submit their own creations.

General Design Refresh

While I don’t want to completely redesign Fiery Feeds, I do want to bring it a bit closer to the look of iOS 14 and Big Sur.

Also the new OS versions brought support for a lot of things I want to use. Native sidebar, native 3-pane-mode, the new window toolbar on macOS, more use of SF Symbols,… you get the idea. Some of those do require iOS 14/Big Sur as target, that means I’m going to release this after the next iOS/macOS versions are available so I can keep supporting to my usual current + 1 OS versions.

Drag and Drop / Multi Selection

One of the more macOS centered improvements. Selecting multiple article to mark read or tag at once, or simply dragging feeds / articles to folders / tags to assign them is something I’d expect from a Mac app. I’ve caught myself trying to do this and getting annoyed that it doesn’t work multiple times. Interestingly I’ve never missed those features on iOS – I still plan on supporting it on both platforms.

I think this is going to fit well with the updated design, since I have to completely re-do at least the feeds and folders list anyway.

Advanced Saved Searches

Like I said above, the foundation is already in place, but I still need to build the UI to create more complex saved searches. I like iTunes’ UI for smart playlists, and I hope that Smart Searches will end up looking and working like that.

Per Feed Settings

Over the time people have asked for different settings they want only on a per feed basis, not for the entire app. Showing Preview Images for example, or notifications only for specific feeds. Alongside that I also want to support automatically marked articles read after a certain time (for specific feeds), and some more.
Those will be ‘override’ settings, that is, if you never look into the feed settings view, the app should continue to behave exactly as it does today.

Full Text Search & Saved Searches

The most requested feature is finally here, full text search for all your articles.

You can either search all articles in the feeds and folders list, and see the number of results in each feed or folder, or you can filter the article list directly within a feed or folder.

You can create saved searches directly from the article list, which will then appear like folders in the main feeds & folders list. The saved searches run locally on device for your articles, but where it’s supported (Inoreader on a paid plan or Feedbin) you’ll also have the option to create a server side search that is synced across your devices. Saved searches are also synced for iCloud feed and iCloud read later accounts.

Local saved searches even store and respect the current feed or folder where they are created and only show matching articles from these sources. You can of course create a saved search from the “All Articles” feed to get all of them too.

Cursor Support

This feature is a bit overdue, but since I was already well into 2.4 when Apple released cursor support for the iPad, I decided to do it right and release it together with the rest of the new features. Most of the app was already working reasonably. because of Catalyst, but I’ve added some animations and hover states that are only available on iOS.

Plus some of the improved cursor support, like displaying URLs while hovering links, in the article view is only available with the new native rendering, that’s also officially supported now.

Native Rendering

Native Rendering is a new option to display the article. I’ve been working on it for the past year or so, and it will replace the WKWebView based rendering at some point. Instead of just throwing the article’s HTML content simply into a WebView, Fiery Feeds parses the HTML itself and displays it using native labels, images and so forth.

This is not only much faster – not that I’m better at rendering HTML than the Safari team, but since it’s only used for articles, I can completely ignore any javascript, any CSS, any more advanced layouts, and only implement the elements commonly used in articles – it also gives me more control over the individual elements. You’ll notice context menus with more options, better drag and drop, images can be downloaded really on demand and use the same cache regardless of if they’re loaded during sync or when viewed in an article, iframes can be set to only load when needed, and much more.

The new native article viewer has also an updated design for most elements, giving it a more modern look.

Updated Roadmap

I had to push back some of the features planned for version 2.4, to be able to release if before iOS 14 / Big Sur hits. Now that 2.4 is done, I’m going to focus on version 2.5 with initial support for iOS 14 and Big Sur, that is enough changes to make it run well on the new operating systems, but not much in terms of updated UI for Big Sur. Plus some of the smaller features I had to drop from version 2.4, depending on how much time is left until the public release. Version 2.5 should be available around the time iOS 14 / Big Sur drops.

Of the big features originally planned in the roadmap for 2020, four (Mac Trial, Full Text Search, Saved Searches and native rendering) are now released. I’m going to continue to work on Performance improvements, but I’m pushing per feed settings and drag and drop/Multi Selection to next year.

Instead, for the rest of the year, I’m going to work on replacing as much of the Fiery Feeds’ custom UI elements with some of the new system elements (like the collapsible sidebars on iPads, the new 3 pane mode for SplitViews, Big Sur’s new window toolbar, using SF Symbols instead of custom icons more and more …) to get version 2.6 to fit in to Big Sur as much as possible.

This is the second of my now yearly roadmap blog posts. You can find the last year’s post here.

Looking back

Looking at my commit history for the last few years, 2019 was actually the busiest year so far.
All in all there were 19 updates for iOS and 3 for macOS. As always you can find the entire changelog here.

3 Pane View

In preparation for the Catalyst Mac app, I’ve started the year implementing the three pane view on iPads.
Looking back this was a good idea, there were more than enough other things to do to get the macOS app ready in time for Catalina, so it was nice to have this out of the way early.

Sync Services

One of the more requested features was a way to use Fiery Feeds without having to signup for a third party service.

Version 2.2 added an integrated RSS parser that allows you to subscribe to feeds without having to rely on any server or service. The feeds are downloaded and parsed on device (the way traditional RSS readers work).
Because I noticed that a lot of the things needed for a read later service, from text extraction to database code, were already in place, version 2.2 also added an integrated read later account.

I didn’t stop with local accounts, instead if added iCloud syncing to both the RSS and read later accounts. Since the database structure is shared between all account types, I can even use the same iCloud sync code for both types of accounts. And, while I was at it, I’ve added support for syncing the app and account settings through iCloud as well.

Later I’ve also added support for syncing with NextCloud News.

Article tags

New is also support for article tags, creating new tags and adding tags to an article. It’s only supported by some services, but it made sense to implement it now, since they’re now also used it in local/iCloud accounts.

Siri Shortcuts

Fiery Feeds learned Siri Shortcuts with parameters, allowing you scripting access to your feeds and articles. You could search for articles or save all starred article from a particular folder to your notes, or whatever you want. (Do let me know if you’re doing something interesting!)

Bionic Reading

This year also brought Bionic Reading to Fiery Feeds. It highlights parts of words to guide the eye through the text.

Full Page Screenshots

Another new feature in iOS 13 are full page screenshots. When you take a screenshot of an article, you’ll now have the option to save or annotate a PDF of the entire articles (even if it’s longer than what’s on the screen). Just take a screenshot, and then choose Full Page in the system’s screenshot UI.

Mac App & iOS 13 Update

After iOS 12 which required nearly no changes to the code, iOS 13 brought (mostly due to Catalyst – most of the new features in the iOS version were required for the Mac) some massive changes.

  • Context Menus
  • Multiple Window Support
  • System Dark Mode
  • New Keyboard Shortcuts API
  • New Background Sync API

But at least there is now a working, and fairly usable macOS version of Fiery Feeds. It’s not perfect yet, and there are still lots of bigger and smaller improvements planned for it, but if you like your RSS app configurable, it might already be the option out there.

Planned 2020

Both the Mac app and the iOS 13 update were much more work then expected, so I had to push some of the planned features to 2020. Full text search and saved searches in particular.

Here are the things planned for 2020, in no particular order. (And I want to emphasise that they are only planned. Plans change sometimes.)

Mac Trial

Fiery Feeds for macOS is sold separately from the iOS as a €35 one time purchase. I understand that you might want to try the app before buying it, so the first thing in 2020 will be a trial version.

Full Text Search

As mentioned before, full text search was originally planned for 2019. It’s been pushed to 2020 and should be in the first feature update for iOS and macOS this year.

Saved Searches

Once it’s possible to search for text, it’d be nice to save those searches for quick access. I’m thinking of something along the lines of iTunes’ smart playlists to create powerful smart views, possibly even across multiple accounts.

Native Article View

Another big feature that’s coming sooner than later. Instead of relying on an embedded web view to render the article content, I’m parsing the content myself, and drawing it with standard UIKit labels and images to the screen. This is not only a lot faster, it also gives me much more control over the content (think useful context menus, or loading images only when needed, to save bandwidth).

You can even try it out already, if you want. Just open the Expert Settings by tapping and holding the settings button, then look into the ‘Experimental’ settings. There are still a few things missing, most notably text selection, but it’s coming along.

Drag and Drop / Multi Selection

One of the more macOS centered improvements. Selecting multiple article to mark read or tag at once, or simply dragging feeds / articles to folders / tags to assign them is something I’d expect from a Mac app. I’ve caught myself trying to do this and getting annoyed that it doesn’t work multiple times. Interestingly I’ve never missed those features on iOS – I still plan on supporting it on both platforms.

Per Feed Settings

Over the time people have asked for different settings they want only on a per feed basis, not for the entire app. Showing Preview Images for example, or notifications only for specific feeds. Alongside that I also want to support automatically marked articles read after a certain time (for specific feeds), and some more.
Those will be ‘override’ settings, that is, if you never look into the feed settings view, the app should continue to behave exactly as it does today.

Performance

And lastly, 2019 had some massive features and changes (and you might notice that the features planned for 2020 are quite a bit smaller in scope), this year I want to focus more on general performance and stability. Sound boring, I know, but I have quite the backlog of smaller issues, and ideas of where I could make the app a bit faster.

Fiery Feeds for Mac offers the same customisability as you’re used to. It’s build using Catalyst and on the same code base as the iOS version. I’ve written some more about it here.

It offers the same customisability as you’re used to in the iOS version, including multiple article list styles, custom themes, custom URL and Email actions, iCloud synchronisation, smart views, automatic full text extraction and all the rest.

The system wide action extension to subscribe or read later is coming in one of the next updates. It’s already working in my development builds, but I haven’t managed to convince the App Store servers to accept uploads with the extensions embedded. Let’s see if that changes after the official Catalina release, wouldn’t be the first time that the App Store isn’t quite up to date.

The new Bionic Reading feature from version 2.3 is also available on the Mac.

Pricing

I’ve thought long about how to price the Mac version. The most obvious option would be to make it part of the subscription that already exists on iOS, but this comes with some technical issues. The Mac and the iOS/iPadOS apps are two separate apps on the App Store (since universal apps between iOS and Mac are not supported). Apple allows syncing the subscription between separate apps, but doesn’t provide any help in doing so.

Right now there is only a single subscription (group) available in Fiery Feeds. That means, no matter what, a single Apple ID can not subscribe more than once. If I wanted to do subscription syncing, I’d have to at least offer a separate (because it’s separate app) subscription in the Mac app (for people who do not use the iOS app), which means users might subscribe twice by accident (if they didn’t follow the steps to synchronise the subscription from the iOS app exactly step by step). Together, with the fact that I can’t refund subscriptions (or purchases) even if I wanted to, that sounds like a support nightmare in the making. So a shared subscription is out, at least until it’s properly supported by the App Store.

Generally requiring a second subscription for the Mac app for everyone… feels just wrong. So that’s out too.

That leaves me with probably the most straightforward option. Fiery Feeds for Mac will be a single, paid upfront, onetime purchase, as Mac apps have been for a long time. It’s going to be $35 and I expect to support it with new updates and features for the next 3-5 years, before doing some sort of paid upgrade, be that a move to a subscription (if supported by Apple), or another paid version.

You can find Fiery Feeds on the Mac App Store.

I’ve posted a few things here and there about the progress on the Mac app during development on twitter. I’ll try to add a few more words here.

Getting an initial version of the iPad app to run on macOS was relatively straightforward. It did not look particularly good (or mac like) though. Luckily I’ve started working towards the Mac app, when Apple announced Catalyst last year, and the 3 pane view was already done.

After adding a stretching mode the the toolbars, and disabling the large titles, it’s getting a little bit better. Both navigation bar and toolbar are custom implementations, since I’ve had far too many issues with the standard classes in iOS over the years. I’m quite happy I did it this way.


Multi window support is also a must on macOS, even more so than on iPad. It’s nice that implementing windows for the Catalyst app, also gave me multi window support on iPad for free, basically. But on macOS I’m using it a bit more, by default. For example the settings above are always opened in a separate window (as they should be), or if the main window with the article list is too small to show the three pane mode, it defaults to opening articles in separate windows as well (although this can be changed in the settings).

And of course menus. I’ve spend a lot of time switch everything to the new context menus (which are weirdly similar to my own long press menu from version 2.2), except of course, that they get translated to actually context menus on the Mac. And the menu bar, of course, it wouldn’t be a Mac app without it. While at it, I’ve completely rewritten the handling of keyboard shortcuts, which were kind of hacky before.

Additionally to the keyboard shortcuts, I’ve also completely rewritten the background sync using the newest APIs. You probably shouldn’t notice any change on iOS, but it was still necessary to get background sync working on Mac as well.

Finally, I’m using an AppKit bundle for some of the smaller details. Like the nice and entered traffic lights on the (custom) window titlebar wouldn’t be possible without AppKit. Or setting the window size for the image viewer correctly. Or even the web view wouldn’t show the click pointer on links without doing that manually (though this might have been fixed in one of the later Catalina betas. Haven’t checked).

All in all, I see this first release more as the beginning of a journey than the final step.

New Features

Fiery Feeds 2.3 brings support for all the new iOS 13 features and some more.

Context Menus

I’ve completely replaced the old custom long press menu with the new context menus everywhere (and added menus in lots of new places).

Bionic Reading

First off, the article view now supports Bionic Reading. It allows you to read long texts with more
 focus, awareness, and sustainability. You can read more details on how Bionic Reading works here.

Nextcloud News

Fiery Feeds now supports two way syncing with selfhosted Nextcloud News installations.

Multi Window Support

Fiery Feeds now fully supports multiple windows on iPad running iOS 13 or later. You can open different accounts in different windows, you can also drag individual articles to open them in separate windows.

Siri Shortcuts

Siri Shortcuts with parameters are an extremely cool feature. I’m not thinking about them as much as things to say to Siri, and more like a bridge to allow scripting with Fiery Feeds. I’ve added shortcuts to fetch article ids from certain feeds or folders and to fetch article attributes (like title, body, author and so forth) for an article. And shortcuts to tag articles or mark them starred/read. I’m really looking forward to seeing what you all do with this.

As an example, here’s a short script that searches the “Must Read” folder for any article that contains “Apple” and tags the article.

System Dark Mode

You can still select your preferred dark and light mode, but now you have the option for the app to follow the selected systemwide mode, instead of following the screen brightness.

Even more

Version 2.3 also includes completely rewritten (and streamlined) keyboard shortcuts code and background sync using the newest APIs (which should reduce background battery usage), but you should not notice too much of these changes.

Some of my favourite little changes are the new two column settings view on iPads and that you can tap and hold any of the bottom toolbars to quickly customise them.

One more thing

There is one other thing hidden in this version. I’ve been working on the next generation of my article viewer for the past few months. With this new article view, I’m parsing the HTML for the article myself, and render the content using native elements, instead of throwing everything into a web view. It’s far from finished, but what’s there is already so much better (and much faster!) than the web view based rendering that’s currently on by default.

If you want to give it a shot, you can open the Expert Settings by tapping and holding the settings button, then look into the ‘Experimental’ settings. Let me know what you think :)

Fiery Feeds has lots of settings. There are the Expert Settings I’ve written about previously, there are the general app settings. And there are also the often overlooked account settings.

The account settings not include the login information, but also some additional operations like importing or exporting OPML files (in iCloud or local accounts).

Caching

You can how many and which of your articles should be downloaded to your device, and how many and which articles should cache additional data. You can choose whether you want all starred articles, and how many already read articles you want to have available on your device.

You can also choose which (unread, read or starred) and how many, at most, of your articles should be cached. Fiery Feeds always keeps the selected number of the newest articles with the selected states cached, and removes older articles, even if still unread from it’s cache.
Note that caching the article here is different from downloading the article. A downloaded articles shows up in the app, and has the in the RSS feed included article text available offline. For a cached article, the extracted article text (for text mode) as well as any image included in the article is downloaded and available offline. Both are downloaded on demand for any downloaded, but not cached article.

Notifications

Here you can choose whether to include the unread count in the app icon badge. (The unread counts of all accounts with this setting enabled are added together).
You can also choose if you want to receive detailed notifications for each new article (and wether you want to receive them inside the app, or only in the Notification Center. Note that the notifications inside the app only show for at most 5 articles, as to not block the UI for too long).
You can also choose to receive a sync summary (“6 new articles found”) as notification.

Smart Views

Here you can enable or disable any of the smart views, as well as setting the threshold for the long and short article folders, for the high and low frequency folders, and the number of days to be shown in the recents folder.

Mark Read

Choose when articles should be automatically marked read. Available options are on opening in the article view, on scrolling past them in the article list, or on triggering the quick share action.

Interface Settings

In the account interface settings, you can fully configure the bottom toolbars for the feed list, the article list, the Hot Links and article view. Additionally you can turn or or off showing word counts in the article list, as well as left/right swiping and saving the reading progress in the article view.

App Settings

Synching the general app settings is easy, you just need to enable “Sync App Settings” in Settings > iCloud and Backup. Note the selected color theme setting is exclude (since any custom theme file is not part of the settings, and might not be installed on other devices), as well as the selected layout (1, 2 or 3 panes), since that is very device depended.

If you find that any of your settings are not synchronised (this can happen after initially turning on “Sync App Settings”), you can try toggling them on one device. Since Fiery Feeds only synchronises settings when they’re changed, editing the setting, even if you set it back to its original value, will cause it to be synced to other devices again.

Alternatively, you can also use the “Rebuild iCloud Database” button in Settings > iCloud & Backup, to delete and reupload everything to iCloud, including all settings. Afterwards, use the “Replace Local Settings” button on your other devices to make sure all of the settings from iCloud are downloaded.

The app settings are synchronised with iCloud whenever you tap the “Synchronise Now” button in Settings > iCloud & Backup, when you manually trigger a sync in either the feed, article or accounts list, or when a background sync happens.

Account Settings

Synchronising account settings is a little bit more involved, since Fiery Feeds supports more than one account of the same type, and the settings should obviously only sync to the corresponding account.

To start you need to add your account on one, and only one device. Make sure to enable “Sync Accounts” in iCloud & Backup, and tap the “Synchronise Now” button, in case your account isn’t already listed under “Accounts in iCloud”. Then, on your other devices, remove all previously set up accounts, and import the account you’ve added to iCloud either in Settings > iCloud & Backup, or by adding a new account from the accounts list (the accounts found in iCloud are displayed at the top of the list).
After that, the account settings will be synchronised with iCloud, every time the account is synced, as long as “Sync Accounts” is enabled.

If you are experiencing issues, you can also use the “Rebuild iCloud Database” to reupload all data from one device to iCloud. Make sure to synchronise the account on the device, with the data you want to use, before synchronising on your other devices.

Note that purely local accounts do not support synchronising settings, and are not added to iCloud, to avoid confusion (when the account is listed in iCloud, but the feeds and articles are not synchronised).

If you want to delete an account, and all associated data from iCloud, delete it first from all of your devices (so it isn’t reuploaded automatically), then delete it from iCloud by swiping left on the account in iCloud & Backup.

Three Pane View

The new 3 pane view is not only a preparation for the eventual Mac app, but only works really great on the large iPads. There’s also the option to hide the feed list, to get the much requested view with the article list on one side, and the detailed article view on the other.

In addition to the three pane view for iPads, there’s also a big change in the interface for all devices: I’ve switched to a long press to open the menu for any items, instead of the right swipe it was before.
Not only is there more space to properly show all options, but it also free the right swipe gesture everywhere on the screen. And now that the swipe right action is free on all screens, I’ve used it to allow swiping back to the previous screen anywhere, not just from the screen edge.

As you can there are now two more actions available on articles (if supported by the sync service), namely tag article and delete article. That means full tagging support in Feedly, Bazqux as well as in Fiery Feed accounts.

Fiery Feed Accounts

The second new feature, and probably most requested feature so far, is also finally here: Completely local accounts. There is no longer a need for a third party sync service, just to use Fiery Feeds.
There are two types of local accounts, first there’s the feed account, which let’s you subscribe to to rss and atom feeds. And there’s also a read later account which let’s you save articles for a later date. Fiery Feeds will use its text extraction service to automatically download the text version of every added article.

You can add articles not only from within Fiery Feeds (with a swipe action for example), but also using the completely redesigned share extension from any other app, including Safari.

iCloud Sync

Since you might be using more than one device, you can also create iCloud based accounts, instead of just local accounts. Both feed and read later accounts are also available in an iCloud syncing variant, which synchronise your content between all of your iOS devices.

In addition to synching your content, version 2.2 also adds the option to synchronise all app settings, as well as account and feed settings (like the selected view mode for each feed). When you launch Fiery Feeds the first time on a new device you can also import your existing accounts from other devices with a single tap.

Tidur has always been something like a playground to try out new technologies. And with version 4.0 I’ve switched all of the syncing code from my syncing through my own server to CloudKit. Login and accounts are gone (since they are no longer needed), and syncing is now available to everyone.
I wanted to get familiar with CloudKit before adding it to Fiery Feeds, and you can now simply turn on syncing instead of having to create an account – which is a vastly better experience.

Additionally I’ve replaced the old hacked together Siri support with Siri Shortcuts. You can now record a phrase to start a specific timer, start timers from the Shortcuts app, and start suggested timers right from the lock or search screen (if iOS happens decides to suggest a timer). And it now includes visual feedback in Siri’s interface.

You can find version 4.0 on the App Store.

As a new year begins I want to pause for a moment and reflect on the past year’s accomplishments and to share a roadmap of the plans for the new year.

Looking Back

2018 was a big year for Fiery Feeds. Two major updates and its fifth birthday (it’s really been already 5 years since version 1.0, I can’t believe how fast that went). I’ve added a ton of new features this year, you can see them in the entire changelog, but I’m going to highlight the biggest features here.

Subscriptions

First there was the big 2.0 update, which completed the transition to a free app with a $9.99 per year subscription for additional features.
The subscription is working really well, even if the first year isn’t up yet, and the yearly subscriptions not renewing yet. It’s almost as if letting users try the app first is a good thing.

Smart Views

Maybe the biggest feature this year are the so called Smart Views.
There is the Hot Links Smart View, which highlights the most linked to websites in your Feeds (a first in iOS RSS Readers), there are Smart Views based on the posting frequency, Smart Views for particularly long or short articles, a view for articles published today, and a specially highlighted Must Read folder, for the most important feeds.

Modern App

I’ve also brought the app up to speed with all of the new features in iOS that have been missing before 2.0. This included 3D Touch, Drag and Drop on iPad, Continuity to quickly open articles on other devices, Haptic Feedback and State Restoration.
But the most important thing was cleaning up the code base and bringing it to a state, I can build upon for the next few years. This allowed features link 3D Touch or the new layout, and some of the coming features.

Updated Design

It started in version 2.0 with an improved layout, and was completed in 2.1 with completely redrawn icons and a ton of smaller interface improvements and polish across the entire app.

Automatic Dark and Light Themes

One of the most requested feature is automatic switching between a light and a dark theme. You can now select the dark and light themes of your choice, and switch between them either based on the screen brightness, or with a double tap on the navigationbar.

Folder Groups

A rather hidden features, but maybe my personal favourite are folder groups. By naming feeds or folders in the form of “group/name”, they are grouped together in the feed list in Fiery Feeds, and because that name is synced to all your devices, these groups are automatically available everywhere.

New Services

Additionally I’ve added full two way syncing for FreshRSS, a self hosted RSS reader, and Pinboard, as a new Read-It-Later Service in Fiery Feeds.

Roadmap for 2019

Future plans are always subject to change, of course, but here’s the biggest feature I would like to add to Fiery Feeds next year (throughout two or three feature updates).

3 Pane Layout

More layout options, including a 3 pane layout, on larger iPads. This a more desktop-like layout, and it’s also a bit of preparation for an eventual Marzipan Mac app.

Standalone RSS Account

Exactly what it says. An RSS account that’s not tied to any sync service or server. The app already supports the required feed management, but since that is a Premium feature, and a standalone account without the ability to add new feeds is rather pointless, the standalone account is likely going to be a Premium feature as well.

Standalone Read It Later Account

Fiery Feeds already offers text extraction for any website, building upon that, a standalone read it later account shouldn’t be too hard to implement. Given that it also requires feed management, as well as text extraction, this is also going to be a Premium feature.

iCloud Sync

Fiery Feeds has a lot of settings. To make it easier to manage them across multiple device, I’m planning to add iCloud sync for settings. This includes all app-wide settings, as well as accounts (without login information though) and per-account settings, including article states in RSS accounts and saved links and states in read later accounts.

Search Everything

Full Text search for articles in feeds, folders or the entire account. Search for options in settings. Support for searching articles using Spotlight.

Saved Searches

By saved searches I don’t mean just simple search strings, instead I’m planning something powerful enough to replace all current Smart Views (except Hot Links). That is, multiple parameters to include or exclude certain articles based on search strings, published date, article length and so forth.

Marzipan Mac App

And finally, I’m waiting for Apple to release more information on UIKit on Mac, codenamed ‘Marzipan’. I’ve been meaning to do a Mac app for a while, but given that I’m a solo developer and time constraints, it’s simply not feasible to rebuild the entire UI in App Kit, but if I can reuse parts of the existing UI, that calculation changes. And I’m quite hopeful that it’s going to be possible to build a good Mac app using Marzipan, it is publicly available (after all, that’s more than a year of work on UIKit / Mac, compared to the current News and Home apps).

Fiery Feeds is known to be very configurable, and there a quite a few settings to be found in the settings view. What is maybe less known, is that you can long press the settings icon, to open the Expert Settings, instead of the regular Settings view.

The Expert Settings screen contains a bunch of settings, that are not important enough to make it into the regular Settings view, since I don’t want to the settings screen to become unwieldy, with too many options, that hardly anyone uses. It also contains some more experimental options, that I might remove at some point later.

The All Settings group simply lists all available settings in the app, unless you know what you’re looking for, this is probably not very useful to you.

I want to highlight some of the more interesting options in the Expert Settings view.

Sharing & Dragging

Share Full Text : This option allows you to share the full article text, instead of just the title, when using the system share sheet. Note that not all apps support this, and some apps will not show up in the share sheet, if this option is enabled.

Article View

Open Web View Links in Safari View : Opens links clicked in an article in web mode in Safari View. Links opened from article or text mode are always opened in Safari View. This setting is disabled by default, since the web view and Safari View do not share their cookies, and it would be impossible to login to a paywalled website, if the login link opened in Safari.

Article View Web Mode Reset Cookies : Automatically clears the cookies whenever an article is opened in web mode. Useful for some websites that only allow to view a limited number of articles.

Zooming in Article View : Zooming in web mode is always enabled, this settings allows you to zoom in article or text mode as well.

Article View Presentation : Open the article view fullscreen (default on iPhone) or small spaces left and right (default on iPad).

Article List

Dynamic Height in Articles : Disabling this causes each article to use the exact same height in the article list. This increases performance, and might be easier to read for some, but it can leave empty spaces, if there is not enough preview text for some articles.

Show Micro Blog Titles : Displays the blog name instead of the post title for titleless posts. This makes a list of microblog posts feel more like Twitter. On by default.

General

Reduce Visual Effects : Removes a couple of animations, and visual effects like the blurred background in lots of places. Disabling can increase the performance, especially on older devices.

Prefer AMP Pages : Shows the AMP page in web mode, if available. AMP pages are a lot faster to load, but this requires a call to Google’s repository of AMP sites before opening a website, which has privacy implications (it’s off by default).

Version 2.1 adds a couple of new features, but the primary focus was on really polishing the design and making it feel right at home on iOS 12, after the layout and architecture changes in 2.0.

New Smart Views

There are three new smart views in this release.

First there is the “Today” view, which simply shows all articles published today (this actually means this day, and not the last 24h period). If you look closely, you’ll notice that the today icon even shows the current date.

Then there are the long and short article smart views, which show particularly long or short article, based on the word count. The exact threshold can be changed in the expert settings. Building on this there is now also the (per-account) option to display article word counts in the article list, which is especially useful for read-it-later accounts.

New Services

There is now full two-way sync support for Pinboard, it is primarily meant to be used as a read-it-later service, but Fiery Feeds still downloads all bookmarks. They are filtered by read / favorite status like all other articles though (Favorites are simply tagged with ★).

There is also official support for FreshRSS, which just uses their new Fever style API, but uses the regular “All Articles” folder, instead of the Fever specific “Sparks” and “Kindling” folders.

iOS 12 Support

Siri Shortcuts for opening specific accounts. These shortcuts are available in the Settings.app > Siri & Search > All Shortcuts, Apple’s shortcuts app and they should appear automatically in the notification center and search view, if iOS detects some kind of pattern in your usage.

You can now use the iCloud keychain or the new 1Password extension to fill in passwords when adding new accounts or sharing services.

Fiery Feeds also fully supports the new iPhone XS Max. Not only is the splitview enabled in landscape, the individual entries now feature rounded corners, if there is some spacing required because of the notch.

Design Improvements

Bolder Look

All icons in 2.1 have been redrawn for a bolder look that fits better with iOS 12. Fiery Feeds now also sports large titles like most system apps. You can now group your folders in the feed list and there is now the option to sort your feeds and folders by unread count instead of alphabetically.

Article View Improvements

The article view now shows the main image as header image, and uses it as a blurred background, to give the whole article a bit of a tint. The rest of the article layout has been cleaned up, and the toolbar is now configurable by account. For example, read-it-later accounts now use a mark-read-and-close button instead of the standard read button, which feels much more natural.

The article design picker has also been completely redesigned. It now takes less space, and you can see a live preview of your changes. (And it just looks a whole lot better).

New Hot Links View

The Hot Links view has been much improved. Text versions of all hot links are now downloaded for offline use, and the found titles are used in the list view. It’s now possible to sort the Hot Links by number of articles or by temperature. You can blacklist domains directly from the Hot Links list (or any other part of the url in the blacklist options). And filtering read articles now happens independent of the main list.

All New Theme Picker

Version 2.1 features a completely new theme picker. The main theme colors are now previewed. It’s easier to import themes from the directory or your iCloud Drive. It’s now possible to export themes by long pressing the theme you want to export and you can delete individual themes by left swiping on them.

You can also now pick two separate themes as your dark and light theme. Fiery Feeds will switch between them either automatically based on the screen brightness or when you double tap the navigation bar on any screen.

Improved Font Picker

Like in the theme picker, the font picker also shows you how a font looks without selecting it first. You can now select a separate font for the article view and the rest of the app. There are also a couple new fonts available, including Futura, Palatino and Ping Fang (the first CJK font in Fiery Feeds).

Custom Action Tags

It’s now much easier to create your custom url actions and email templates. Fiery Feeds now has a bar with all available tags right above the keyboard, instead of just listing them in the footer below the textfield.

Better App Icon Picker

The new app icon picker view previews the icons and there are a couple new icons, like the black and white icons, or the circle icon.

One of the new features in Fiery Feeds 2.0 are the Smart Views. I want to go a bit more into detail in this blog post.
The big one among the Smart Views is definitely the Hot Links view.

Hot Links

Fiery Feeds calculates as score for every link, the temperature if you will. This was inspired by the now defunct self hosted feed reader Fever. This temperature is based on both how many of your articles and feeds link to given website and how old these articles are.

That means that the most important news are always on top, and cool down over time. Additionally links to the same domain are not counted, and it takes a least links from two different feeds to get a link into the Hot Links view.

If you’re really into a specific topic, and subscribed to most of the important feeds, there is even an option in the middle of toolbar to limit the Hot Links to your articles. That is only links to any of your articles will be shown, and these links can are treated a little differently: Instead of the url the title of the article will be displayed.

Low Frequency View

The Low Frequency view that shows only feeds that do not post often. It’s akin to the Infrequent Stories feature recently launched by Newsblur, only that everything happens on device and that it’s available for all services.

Most news feeds are always up to date and publish new articles whenever something happens. But then there are the blogs and authors, who post thoughtful pieces, but only post a few times per month. The Low Frequency view highlights these articles, by showing only article from feeds that post less than 0.1 articles per day, or one article every ten days. You can change this threshold in the new Expert Settings.

High Frequency View

The High Frequency view is the exact opposite of the Low Frequency view. It shows posts from all feeds that post more than two articles per day. (This too can be changed in the Expert Settings). You might ask yourself how this can possibly help catching up with your news.

This folder allows you to mark old news articles read, and to get back to a manageable number of articles, without losing any of the articles from slower feeds.

Must Read Folder

The Must Read folder is probably the least interesting thing in the Smart Views section: If you create a regular folder and name it “Must Read”, any feed in this folder will also be highlighted in the Must Read view.

This view is not especially smart, but I find it really useful to have a couple of hand selected feeds at the top of the list. It means that when I finished the smart views section, I’ve already read all of the important stories of the day.

As I previously said, the focus of version 2.0 is on new layout and modernising the app, so I have a good foundation to build on for the next couple of years. I also said there wouldn’t be any new features, but I just couldn’t help myself when I had the idea to add what I call Smart Views.

New Layout

The first thing about the new layout is, the new, larger article view. The article list is still as configurable as always, but it now has a lot more space to shine.

The article view also gets a lot more space. It’s now displayed modally above the article list and can be dismissed by simply swiping down. Or from the edge on either side. Or by tapping on the blurred content. What I’m saying is, it’s easily dismissed, making getting through a lot of articles easy.

There are also a ton of smaller UI improvements across the app, for example you can drag the article view toolbar from the bottom to either side, or the parallax effect when scrolling in the article list. You should really just see it yourself.

Modernized App

Aside from the new layout, the app now supports everything you’d expect from a modern iOS app.

3D Touch

Full support for 3D Touch and Peek / Pop on devices with 3D Touch support. You can press to preview article lists, hot links, articles or preview images to jump directly to the image viewer (quite useful for comics). Yes, I know I’m late on that one.

Drag and Drop

On the iPad you can now drag articles right from article list to other apps. You can even choose whether the preview image or the HTML content is included.

Continuity

Also new: Support for Hand off / Continuity. I’m surprised, that this has not been implemented by other apps yet. If you’re reading an article on your phone, your other devices, including iPads and Macs will no offer to open the corresponding website, so you can continue reading on another device if you want.

Haptic Feedback

On newer iPhones, Fiery Feeds will also respond using the taptic engine to your taps and swipes. Apps without this just feel a bit flat in my opinion.

State Restoration

If the app quits in the background, the next time you launch it, Fiery Feeds will continue right where you left off. Yep, late on that one too.

iPhone X support

And of course the new app is optimized for the iPhone X.

Smart Views

There are four Smart Views in Fiery Feeds, but the most notable is probably the Hot Links view.

Hot Links

Hot Links searches all your articles for links, and ranks them based on how many articles link to a given website and how old these articles are. It gives you a quick overview of the most important events.

Frequency Folders

There are also two folders based on posting frequency.

The first is the Low Frequency Folder that shows only feeds that do not post often. It’s akin to the Infrequent Stories feature recently launched by Newsblur, only that everything happens on device and that it’s available for all services.

The second folder is the polar opposite, the high frequency folder. I usually use this folder to mark older articles read, if I’m behind of my feeds. Using this folder I can reduce the number of articles, without losing any of the articles from slower feeds.

Must Read

The fourth folder is the least exciting. It’s a specially highlighted folder with your most important feeds. Simply create a folder and name it “Must Read”. It’ll be shown in the Smart Views section above all other folders.

Pricing

I released a new, free version of Fiery Feeds about a year ago with an optional subscription, that unlocked a few additional features. That version eventually replaced the paid version. Fiery Feeds 2.0 will be an update to the subscription based app, at no additional cost (That’s why it’s a subscription).

I have also updated the paid version up to now, despite it not being for sale anymore. Version 2.0 marks the first update, that the paid version will not receive. As a sort of upgrade pricing, the premium subscription is currently 50% off, that is $4.99 per year. Anyone who subscribes until the end of February will stay at this rate until they unsubscribe.

Fiery Feeds 2.0 is available as a free download.

A little update on Fiery Feeds 2.0: It’s going to be a redesign without adding new capabilities.

Instead I’m going to focus on removing old code and no longer needed options like the custom share sheet (since third party apps can only be integrated using the system share sheet) or the old web view (in favour of SFSafariWebView – Note: I’m not talking about the web mode in the article view) and lots of custom navigation code, which will be the biggest chunk of work.

The plan is to make Fiery Feeds feel like a modern app again, with 3D Touch, Peek & Pop, Drag & Drop, Taptic feedback and to have a modern codebase on which I can build for the coming years.

The new layout focuses much more on the article list.

And the article view now uses much more of the screen by default.

Please note that these are only mockups. While I am working on the update the current dev build looks nothing like them yet.

Fiery Feeds will be available as a subscription based app for a year next week and version 2.0 will be a free update to this app.

The next big update to Tidur is here with a couple of small improvements and bug fixes and a big new feature: Cloud Sync.

You can now sign up for Tidur Cloud and sync all your timers between your devices. It can even push changes like starting a timer to all other devices. This is not yet enabled server side, but everything in the app is already setup. If everything goes according to plan I’ll activate this feature in the coming weeks.

Why a custom solution instead of iCloud? For one, it enables things like push notifications, or Alexa integration (potentially – no promises yet). It is why easier to debug if anything does go wrong. Buy the biggest reason, if I’m honest, is that I simply wanted to build a small web service, because I haven’t done that in a long time and Tidur is a nice, simple app that allows me to play with new tech.

Cloud Sync is a new in-app purchase in Tidur, and is included in the full unlock, now called Tidur Pro.

You can download Tidur for free at https://geo.itunes.apple.com/de/app/multi-timers-2/id720812035?mt=8&at=10l5Fg&ct=cc

It’s not a complete redesign, but it could almost be. I’ve polished every corner on the iPhone and Watch app, and added a bunch of new features and a new name (Tidur is Swedish for Timer). Enough to warrant calling it a new major version: 3.0.

New Free Features

A new feature for everyone is pausing timers. It’s exactly what it sounds like: You can pause and resume a running timer, also I’ve added a fifth color: Purple.

Premium Features

But this version also includes a bunch of new premium features. They can be unlocked individually or as a complete package. As a thank you to those who have already purchased the “Remove Ads” in app purchase, the complete package is unlocked automatically.

Repeating Timers

You can now choose how often a timer should repeat, and you can specify a pause between each repetition. This is especially useful if you’re doing workouts with the app.

Light Theme

If you want a lighter design, it’s now very easy to switch between the light and the dark theme.

Additional Sounds

In addition to the two free alert sounds, you can unlock 13 new alert tones, for a total of 15.

Last year I started offering Fiery Feeds in a new version, a free download with a subscription for premium features. In the linked post I outlined why I believe that (reasonably priced) subscriptions are a better option than paid up front apps in the App Store.

Subscriptions

In the coming months I will be moving completely to the subscription model: The paid up front app Fiery Feeds Premium is no longer available to purchase. (If you have previously purchased the paid app, it is still available to download in the Purchased Section in the App Store. I will keep Fiery Feeds Premium updated and working for a while longer, at least until after iOS 11 is released.)

It seems Fiery Feeds lives in a niche much to small to offer an ad-supported version. The ads never brought in any meaningful revenue (less then $20 in a year), partly because Fiery Feeds doesn’t (and doesn’t aim to) appeal to a mass audience, and partly because the ads very not placed very prominently. Since I simply don’t want to add more obtrusive ads, I’ve decided to removed all ads, for everyone, and instead focus more on new features for premium.

If you’re not already a premium subscriber, I would like to ask you to become one, if not for the additional features, then to support the ongoing development of the app. I am going to raise the price of the subscription to $10 / year once version 2.0 hits the store and existing subscribers will keep their current price as long as they’re subscribed to premium.

Version 2.0

Fiery Feeds is now almost four years old, and while I’ve added a lot of features, the design hasn’t changed much in that time. Some design decision, like having everything in the navigation bar made sense when the iPhone 5 was the largest device available. I believe it’s time to go back to the drawing board and think carefully about what still makes sense and what to change. I will talk more about this in a future blog post.

Thank you all for your support over the years

A new version of Dozzzer is now available. It is completely rewritten from scratch in Swift 3 and completely redesigned, with a couple new features throw in.

Music

The new music mode plays your selected songs right in the app. It no longer relies on Apple’s music app for playback (which was kind of a hack), which means it no longer has to display the volume bezel while it’s running and it works much more reliable now.

However these improvements come with a drawback, namely it can no longer play DRM protected media (Apple Music), not yet downloaded songs and it no longer updates the playback position if you listen to a podcast.

External

That’s where the first of the new modes in Dozzzer 4 comes in. The external mode works essentially the same way as the music mode in previous versions: Dozzzer runs in the background, reduces the system volume and send a stop command to the music app when it’s done.

You’ll just have to start the playback in the music or podcast app of you choice. (If you’re using Spotify or a 3rd party podcast player, instead of sending the stop command to the music app, Dozzzer will first start playback in the music app – which cancels the 3rd party app – and then stop it. That means it works with and app now.)

Soundscapes

The second new mode is called soundscapes. Dozzzer comes bundled with soundscapes like “Mountain Creek”, “Thunderstorm” and “Campfire”.

These are not just single audio files played on repeat, instead they’re using tens of different sound files, that are layered in multiple tracks on top of each other and played randomly. All in all Dozzzer uses 90 different file for 6 soundscapes at the moment. You can try a different soundscape everyday for free or unlock all soundscapes forever with a one time purchase.

Download Dozzzer 4.0 now for free.

Multi Timers 2.4 was just released with full support for iOS 10.

screen696x696img_1905

The today widget is now adapted to the new design in iOS 10, and you can restart or stop timers right from the widget without launching the app. Additionally you can now launch the app right into editing a timer from the widget.

Support for Siri: Just say “Start ” or “Stop ” to – you guessed it – start or stop a specific timer.

The Apple watch app now supports watchOS 3, and works as a standalone app. You can add, remove and edit all timers right on your watch.

Free Download

Fiery Feeds is now almost exactly 3 years old, and a lot has changed since I released the very first version.

Paid up front is no longer a good fit for the App Store. There are lots of not so great apps, and spending even $5 without being able to test an app first is a hard sell.
On top of that a lot of Fiery Feeds’ competitors are already available for free.

After seeing other apps like Overcast adopt new business models and Apple allowing subscription pricing for all apps, I’ve decided to move Fiery Feeds to a subscription model.
This means Fiery Feeds is now a free app, and you can use it for free as long as you want.

You can download and try Fiery Feeds here.

Premium Features

If you want some extra features you can purchase a Premium subscription from within the free app. These premium features currently include:

  • No ads
  • Feed management
  • Custom URL and email actions
  • Fetching the full article text for truncated feeds

I do expect to add new premium features to the list over time, but the app should be useable without a premium subscription as well.
I do believe the subscriptions are very reasonable priced, especially considering how much work goes into making Fiery Feeds.

In the past 3 years I have released 39 updates for free for every Fiery Feeds user. That is more than an update every month, and subscriptions go a long way in making sure I can continue improving the app.

Existing users

Thank you to everyone who has purchased Fiery Feeds so far, and another thank you to everyone who became a patron.

Here’s what’s going to change for existing users:
Nothing, really. The app you’re using is now called “Fiery Feeds Premium” on the App Store. That’s it. It is still available, and it will continue to be updated.

Feed Management

Fiery Feeds now includes full feed management giving you the option, to subscribe, unsubscribe from feeds, rename feeds and folders, create or delete folders, moving feeds and updating feeds on the server1.
You can even use the included share extension to subscribe to a site or add it to a read-it-later service from Safari or any other app that supports share extensions.

img_1043_selene-2-local_sep-09-172744-2016_conflictimg_1044_selene-2-local_sep-09-173031-2016_conflict

Today Widget

Version 1.8 also includes a redesigned and updated today widget. You can now switch between accounts in the widget, see preview images and it supports the new show more / less buttons in iOS 10.

img_1047img_1048

Other Improvements

Lots of visual improvements.
The sidebar width can now be changed.
There are now keyboard shortcuts for the article view mode and for scrolling up in an article.
You can share the selected text in an article.
The last selected article view mode is now saved per feed.
Fiery Feeds now downloads starred articles, even if they are already read, if keeping starred articles is enabled.

img_0183img_0184

Fiery Feeds Text Mode

Fiery Feeds 1.7 introduced the three article view modes Article, Web and Text. Where Article displays the article as contained in the RSS feed 1 and Web simply displays the linked website directly in the article view, the Text mode is a little more complicated.

There are three providers for Fiery Feed’s text mode. First there is readability, which uses Readability publicly available mobiliser 2 and might break whenever Readability changes their output or ends support for it 3.

The other two options are “Formatted” and “Text Only”. Both are open source scripts running on a server provided by Fiery Feeds 4. The Text Only more can parse articles more reliably, but does not include any images or other elements like lists.

The thing with providing a service like this is that a server costs money every month, while selling the app brings in revenue just once. That is why Fiery Feeds now also includes the option to become a patron and support both the ongoing development and my ability to provide services like text extraction. 5.

If you enjoy Fiery Feeds, please do become a patron. Thank you.

Multitimers 2.3 improves the today widget and adds full support for x-callback-urls. You can download Multitimers here

Actions

addTimer

multitimers://addTimer?sec&min&hr&d&title&tone

Needs to include at least one of the following parameters. The timer duration is the sum of all

  • sec: (Int) Seconds of the timer duration
  • min: (Int) Minutes of the timer duration
  • hr: (Int) Hours of the timer duration
  • d: (Int) Days of the timer duration

Additionally you can specify the following:

  • title: (Text) Title of the timer
  • tone: (Int, 0-3) Index of the alert tone

deleteTimer

multitimers://deleteTimer?id&title&index

Needs to include one of the following parameters:

  • id: (Text) UUID of the timer to delete, used by the today widget
  • title: (Text) title of the timer to delete
  • index: (Int) index of the timer to delete

restartTimer

multitimers://restartTimer?id&title&index

Needs to include one of the following parameters:

  • id: (Text) UUID of the timer to restart, used by the today widget
  • title: (Text) title of the timer to restart
  • index: (Int) index of the timer to restart

stopTimer

multitimers://stopTimer?id&title&index

Needs to include one of the following parameters:

  • id: (Text) UUID of the timer to stop, used by the today widget
  • title: (Text) title of the timer to stop
  • index: (Int) index of the timer to stop

x-callback-urls

multitimers://x-callback-url/addTimer?sec&min&hr&d&title&tone&x-success&x-error
multitimers://x-callback-url/deleteTimer?id&title&index&x-success&x-error
multitimers://x-callback-url/restartTimer?id&title&index&x-success&x-error
multitimers://x-callback-url/stopTimer?id&title&index&x-success&x-error

You can also supply these additional parameters

  • x-success (URL) URL to be called after successfully completing the action
  • x-error: (URL) URL to be called after an error

Fiery Feeds 1.6

What started in version 1.5 with NewsBlur, Inoreader, AOL Reader and The Old Reader and more importantly a more streamlined internal architecture for adding new services, now bears its fruits with version 1.6 and even more services. Newly supported in 1.6 are the selfhosted Tiny Tiny RSS and the read-it-later services Readability, Instapaper and Pocket.

You can download Fiery Feeds on the App Store.

Multi Timers Watch App

Multi Timers brings a few changes to the main app, like new alert sounds and a redesigned edit view, but the biggest change is that it now also includes an Apple Watch app. You can now see your timers and start them right from your wrist.

Also: Multi Timers now has a place on the website: http://cocoacake.net/apps/multitimers

iPhone_6_Plus_Vert_SpaceGray_sRGB_0914

Fiery Feeds 1.4 brings a couple of changes. Full support for iOS 8 and iPhone 6 / 6 Plus, including a special landscape view on the 6 Plus and a Today Widget, so can you quickly see the newest articles. You can buy Fiery Feeds on the App Store.

The second big change is that instead of a separate iPad and iPhone version, Fiery is now an universal app. If you bought the iPhone version, you can now install it on your iPad too.
I’m going to update the old iPad version too, but it is no longer for sale. If you’ve previously purchased the iPad only version, you can download it under “Purchases” in the App Store.

The Fiery Feed 1.3.1 update brings new themes, including a theme for every color the 5C is available in, and a new theme directory. You can find the directory in the app under settings > themes > then tap the + button in the upper right corner.

iPhone 5c

For those who like to tinker, it is also possible to install custom themes. A theme file is a simple JSON file (see the White Theme as example) defining the colors that should be used in the app as hex strings.

Custom themes can be installed via the URL scheme

fiery://addTheme/{encoded link to the theme file}

As an example, you can open this link on your device to install the sepia theme.

Fiery Feeds allows you to add custom URL schemes to share articles to other apps since version 1.3. When you go to Settings > Sharing > URL Actions you’ll get a list of a predefined apps that support URL actions, but because I can’t add every app, you can also define your own by hitting the add button and define your own action.

The protocol is used the check if a url of this sort could even be opened (if the requested app is installed); the actions is not displayed in the sharing sheet if this check fails.

IMG_2614IMG_2612IMG_2613

You can also define your own email templates, including recipients. You could for example create a email template for OmniFocus’ Mail Drop.

IMG_2614IMG_2617IMG_2616

New

  • New, custom designed sharing sheet
  • Added sound to new article notifications
  • Added sharing to Appigo’s Todo, Clear, Simplenote, Stache
  • Added customizable URL Actions
  • Added customizable Mail Actions
  • Included SendToReader sharing in-app
  • Include Buffer sharing in-app
  • Include OneNote sharing in-app
  • You can logout from any sharing service individually
  • Optionally enter a title when saving to pinboard
  • Added 1Password link when adding an account
  • Explicit option to display the sidebar left or right

Changed

  • Minor Interface Improvements
  • Minimum image size for preview images
  • Changed preview length setting to lines
  • Improved mark all read (Feedly)
  • Removed switch mode gesture from article list

Fixed

  • Feedly no longer logs you in when adding a new account
  • Asks for password again, if authorization has failed
  • Fixed Problem when sharing to evernote
  • Fixed jumping in article list
  • Fixed scrolling in article list
  • Fixed mark stream as read (Feed Wrangler)

Gestures

Fiery Feeds is a reader for power users and while I’ve tried to add an obvious way (e.g button) for every important action, there are a lot of gestures in Fiery. Some of them more discoverable, some less so.

Accounts List
Pull to refresh all accounts

Folder and Feeds List
Pull to refresh current account
Swipe left / right to switch between starred / unread / all
Swipe from the left edge to go back

Item List
Pull to refresh current account
Swipe left / right to switch between sort by date / feed
Swipe left on an article to mark it read / unread
Swipe right on an article show more options (star, share article, mark above or below as read)

Article View
Swipe left / right to switch between articles
Swipe from the left edge to go back
Tap and hold an image to view it larger
Tap and hold a link to open sharing options
3 Finger swipe up / down to change brightness
2 Finger swipe to scroll in elements (such as preformatted code)

Browser View
Swipe from the left edge to go back
3 Finger swipe up / down to change brightness

Image View
Double Tap to zoom the image
Single Tap to display options
Long press the image to display the menu (copy, share, save)
Flick the image up or down to close the view

Keyboard Shortcuts

And since iOS 7 makes it easy to add new keyboard shortcuts I’ve also added a bunch of those in version 1.1.3. These only work when an external keyboard is connected to your iPhone or iPad.

Account List

1,space Select 1st account
2 Select 2nd account
3 Select 3rd account
4 Select 4th account
5 Select 5th account
r Refresh all

Main List

a Show all
u Show unread
s Show saved
r Refresh Account
f Full Refresh Account
Space Open first element
esc, b Back

Item List

Shift+m Mark all read
esc,b Close List
Space Open first article

Article View

Right, Down, k, Space Previous Article
Left, Up, j Next Article
s Toggle Starred
v Open in Browser
m,r Toggle Read
t,s Share Item
esc,b Close Article
f Fullscreen (iPad)

Browser View

Right Go to Next Page
Left Go to Previous Page
r Refresh Page
m Toggle Mobilizer
t,s Share Page
esc,b Close Browser
f Fullscreen (iPad)

Fiery Feeds 1.1 is the first major update for Fiery Feeds (previously Fiery RSS, but who can resist an alliteration like that). Additionally Fiery Feeds now features a new, more distinctive icon.

This is really more a Snow Leopard than a Leopard release. The big user facing new features are support for MnmlRdr, Feed Wrangler and Feedly, but for the most part it’s about the improvements under the hood and a lot of bug fixes.

Syncing with Feedbin or Fever is a lot faster. Syncing with Feedbin is down from 30 seconds to 3-4 seconds in my tests (this really depends on your wireless connection though) and I’ve rewritten the main interface on the iPad and managed to get the animations as wonderfully smooth, as one would expect them to be (finally).

See the full changelog or take a look at Fiery’s new page.

Woah? This site looks different now.

I’ve redesigned this site and I’m using the redesign as an opportunity to focus more and to bring all apps up to speed for iOS 7 (half a year late, but still). Unfortunately not all apps are selling well enough to warrant the work I’d have to put into them and so I have to retire some (most of them, really).

Countdown 2 and Clicklytics are no longer for sale as of today.

Countdown 2 was my very first app in the App Store and it has done well, but time has run its course and today the App Store is too crowded for an app that simple to bring in any meaningful revenue.

Clicklytics pretty much failed from the beginning when I realized that not even I really had a use for tracking just clicks. I should have stopped right then and cut my loses, but I’ve fallen for the classic sunken cost fallacy. Still, at least I can hope that I’ve learned from it.

Additionally I’ve removed both of my games, Dualism and Rotablocks from the website. They’re still available in the App Store, for free, but I don’t expect to do much with them anymore. It’s really hard to compete with freemium titles without ruining your own game.

Audious is also available for free – at least until I finish the iOS 7 update (which is probably going to be a new iPhone-only app). This is more a side project though, because there still isn’t any other music player that really works for me.

Dozzzer is already updated for iOS 7 and probably doesn’t need any other new features.

Fiery Feeds is the app I’m going to focus on in the future. I’ve already submitted an update with support for more sync services to Apple and I have quite a few more ideas for future features. Also, an RSS client seems to be a wonderful project to get into Mac Development (no promises, though).

And finally there are a few other ideas I’ve been playing with for a while that I’d like to try. Maybe a few of them will turn into actual apps this year.

Creating setting screens in iOS usually involves quite a bit of boilerplate code.
To make things easier I’ve thrown together some editable table view cells for UITextField, UISwitch, UISlider and UIStepper.

They’re based on jon/BPEditableTableViewCell and lavoy/ALActionBlocks and you can find them here: BPEditableTableViewCells.

Google’s Chrome for iOS app icon in its official version is not the best adoption of an icon for iOS. It’s just the regular round Chrome icon on a black background. Since there are already quite a few alternative versions, I decided to pile on and design my very own adaption.

ChromeIcons

(I’d be really happy if Google decides someday to use a better icon – this is one of the few things that really annoy me about Chrome for iOS)

Rotablocks

Imagine Tetris, only instead of rotating the blocks you rotate the entire field. This is the idea I started with for my new game.

Obviously it is way to hard to fill up entire rows without moving the blocks left or right, that is why the matter/antimatter game mechanic was introduced. To detonate blocks and score points you have to rotate the field in a way that matter and antimatter blocks touch (You can distinguish between matter and antimatter block by the color of their border).

Additionally to the Tetris like endless play mode, there is a puzzle and a multiplayer mode in Rotablocks. In the multiplayer mode you play against one other player and every time you detonate a block a fixed block is added to your opponents field. Whoever fills up their field first, looses. And finally there is a puzzle mode in which no new blocks are added, but you have to detonate every existing block on the field.

Rotablocks is available for iPhone and iPad on the App Store.

I’m proud to announce that I’m bringing two more of my apps to the iPad. These updates are of course free for everyone who bought the iPhone app already. Thank you for your support, I couldn’t have done this without you!
Audious Universal
The first update is for my music player replacement app Audious. The iPad interface feels just like the iPhone app, helping you discover long forgotten songs in your music library with it’s gorgeous interface and large cover art. The larger interface plays it’s strength when displaying play queue, play view and library one a single screen. Plus: New in this update is full iTunes Match support. You can turn it on in the settings; Otherwise Audious will only display songs available locally. You can find the update on the iOS App Store.
Dozzer Universal
The second app is the Apple featured app Dozzzer, that let’s you drift asleep to your favorite tunes – now even better with the iPad’s larger speakers. You can get it on the iOS App Store as well.

Airplay Icon
Because I needed it for Dozzzer, I might as well share it. So here’s a vector version of Apple’s Airplay Icon as psd.

Audious 1.1
The first big update for Audious is out! Audious 1.1 brings you a completely redesigned music queue, simplified gestures and more focus on individual songs rather than complete albums.

You can reach the queue view now by simply grabbing the entire play view at the handle at the top and sliding it down to reveal the queue behind it. This is much faster than the previous animation.

Some of the features previously only accessible through gestures have now been moved to the menu (which can be opened by tapping and holding the big album cover). Also there is now an option in the settings.app that let’s you choose between artists, albums and songs for the music browser to display when you’re not searching for anything. The default is now songs (It previously displayed albums).

Audious

I am very happy to introduce Audious the (probably) best music player for iOS. It is an entirely gesture controlled replacement for the iPhone music app. You can find all possible gestures here.

Besides it’s interface and gestures the most important feature that sets it apart from the integrated music app is the play queue. It allows you to choose songs to play next without stopping or skipping the one you’re currently listening to.

Audious also helps you rediscover your music by presenting you with albums you haven’t listened to in a while in their full beauty with large cover art.

It is also social with integration for sharing songs (or at least iTunes previews) on twitter and the option to scrobble your tracks to Last.fm.

Audious is available on the App Store now.

Countdown 3.0

Another huge update, big enough to justify 3.0.

The biggest new features are a badge number on the home screen for days to the next event, two completely redesigned themes (the old metal theme didn’t make the cut, but the new Default theme now supports colors.) and support for native twitter sharing.

Other fixes and improvements include a new icon, improved notifications, improved Voice Over support and changes to countdown on the iPad are now reflected immediately.

This is a free update for all current owners. If you don’t already have the app you can get it here: App Store.

Dozzzer Design Update

I present Dozzzer 2.0. There are a lot of changes in this release, most of them under the hood, but a few are quite visible such as the completely revisited design throughout the app.

The behavior for playing in background has been changed as well. Before it kept reducing the volume until you quite the app (remove the from your recent apps that is). Now the app quits automatically as soon as you pause the music (if it’s running in background).

If you don’t already have the app you can get it here: App Store.

When you launch Reading List Sync, it will sit in your menu bar and sync your Safari Reading List with your “Read Later” folder in Instapaper every hour. It doesn’t sync the read status or the current position of texts.

After you launched the app you need to open the preferences (It’s the little ‘I’ in your menu bar), and login to Instapaper. (The preferences windows has a habit of opening behind other windows, so check there, if you don’t see it at first.)

It ignores the read/unread state in Safari. This is intentional as pages get marked as read automatically (and would be removed from the Reading List after that). This is a little confusing (especially because Safari always opens the Unread view in a new window), but is better than unintentionally removing links.

The app is free, but you need a paid Instapaper subscription for it to work.

Download App.

Clicklytics

It’s finally done. My new app is live on the App Store. After over a month of hard work, it feels good to see your work finally out there.

Clicklytics let’s you manage your shorturls on Bitly, Google and CloudApp, but most importantly shows you nice, daily click statistics, even for CloudApp, which doesn’t offer statistics (other than total clicks) themselves.

You can find it on the App Store or you can take a look at it on it’s website.