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I Bought MarsEdit 4

Okay, I did the thing. RedSweater replied to my Tweet really quickly and I got the upgrade price of $24.95, so I’m in!

I’ve got my Applet ready in IFTTT but so far it has been failing. It triggers when a new post is made to the RSS feed that it’s monitoring so this is my testing that again, rather than a notable post. Although it might turn out that way. I don’t really know what I’m going to say yet!

Ah, yes, micro.blog. Have you heard of that? I got an email from Manton Reece—remember him, the buy behind App.net?—with some info about micro.blog. It sounded neat, so I checked it out and went to sign up, only to find that I had already signed up. Presumably that’s how I was on his email list. D’oh!

I put my $5 down and installed the iOS app yesterday and have been quite enjoying it. I wondered whether it would give me a place with a similar vibe to what Vox.com used to be back in my early blogging days. I’ve heard comments that it feels like the early days of Twitter, which is exactly how App.net felt too. So it might have some legs and become a thing that I do, along with this blog here. It’s currently at camscampbell.micro.bog, but if it sticks I’ll get a domain for it.

Should I try MarsEdit again?

Back in the day I used RedSweater’s MarsEdit to post to this blog so that I could write in Markdown. Ironically I’m looking at it again now, but to go the other way.

Eh?

Well, I like writing in the native WordPress posting window. It’s got so much better over the last year with the Gutenberg blocks and all that, but I can’t get posts OUT of WordPress to sit nicely in my DayOne journal, so I was wondering if I could use MarEdit as a way of converting WordPress code into Markdown, maybe with BBEdit or Atom? But so far I haven’t been able to figure it out.

Brett Terpstra’s Slogger used to be good for getting blog posts in DayOne, but I got way into the weeds with Slogger too many times. I’m not a developer and spent way too much time typing sudo this and sudo that and eventually I gave up and started using IFTTT.

So, I’m now wondering if there is a way of using IFTTT to get my blog posts published into DayOne with RSS? Hmmm. I’m going to give that a try.

Still, MarsEdit is kinda cool for browsing through and editing blog posts once they’ve been published, editing tags and all that sort of stuff. I didn’t install it through the App Store though, so I can’t get an upgrade price. V3 doesn’t install from the downloads on Redsweater’s site.

IFTTT

Oh no, IFTTT has gone subscription only. Aaargh. Ah, but I can do it with the Standard account if it’s an applet that someone else has created and put in the Explore section. Thank you, Funky Penguin, whoever you are!

Right, I’m going to test it with this post, but the real gravy will be if it works properly with posts entered directly in the WordPress CMS.

Except I’m NOT going to test it with this post from MarsEdit, because I don’t have a licence. I’ll have to copy and paste this into the CMS. Wish me luck!

Meta stuff: overwhelmed

I’m so caught up meta stuff right now. Big projects are getting finished though:

  • Shifting and converting my music from FLAC to Apple Lossless is finished, and it’s all backed up to my external drive
  • My photos are all consolidated and I’m now just waiting on SpiderOak uploading the full directory do I can start syncing
  • I’ve watched D. Sparks’ OmniFocus screencasts for the second time and am ready to start using the darned thing
  • I’ve moved the Website from SquareSpace to WordPress. I just have a few pages to move from the old old site at Celtic Guitar Talk, something I never did when moving to SquareSpace
  • I finally learned Markdown!

Smaller tasks though, there are just so many of them!

Software

It’s been a big season for upgrades:

  • Text Expander 4
  • Lightroom 4
  • Hazel 3

And for new software:

  • Reeder for iPad
  • MarsEdit
  • Launch Center Pro
  • Marked
  • Found
  • Fantastical

Life

I’m getting through the paleo stuff too. The weight is coming off, but I’m getting in danger of getting into a rut again with the same food all the time. What makes it super hard is the kids. Hamish’s diet is extremely limited, and Freya won’t eat spicy food at all.

OmniFocus

So OmniFocus is starting to seem more and more necessary for me to manage my life, but it is such an overwhelming app. I’m learning a lot from Merlin on his podcasts, and from D. Sparks too. I’m about to buy Kourosh Dini’s Creating Flow with OmniFocus book to delve a little deeper, but at some point I’m going to have to stop learning the system and actually do some stuff.

And speaking of doing stuff, I’ve had the idea of writing for the local paper on tech stuff. I want to practice writing more and, since I’m pretty up-to-date on what’s going on in the world of mobile tech and stuff, it could be a good move. But it will involve tweaking the system. NVAlt? A new iPad?

Lightroom previews at 1:1

So I’ve changed my Lightroom previews to 1:1 to see what happens now when I add them via Mars Edit.

Clover and Poppy

Aha, it goes in at 600x401px. I wonder what kind of code I would need to put in to add a caption… One for the forums I think.

Gallery?

How about a gallery of pics?

DSC 0073

Hmmm. Multiple pics cannot be selected. And what about the Section field? What’s that all about?

There is an option in Style > Customize to media markup templates with variables. I’m guessing I could add a caption variable there if I could figure out what field in LR that would be. Or even just have a caption variable that I can edit in the HTML when it appears in the editing window of Mars Edit. That would certainly be no worse than doing it directly in the WordPress UI.

Kinda fun this!

Testing MarsEdit

I just downloaded a 30-day trial of MarsEdit, a blogging client. It’s hooked up to Vox and to sunbane.com so I can do dual posting without having to copy and paste. I’m not sure whether it will be all that useful, or at least useful enough to spend actual money on it, when I can copy and paste for free. It does have plenty of other features, so it may be that some of the other features will make it worth actual money. We shall see.

Let’s see how it handles the uploading of images.

Right, it uploaded to sunbane, but it doesn’t do that neat little thumbnail thing that you can do in the browser when posting to a squarespace account (which sunbane is).

I’ll see what happens when I post this same post to Vox. It’s put the image URL in so it should display fine. I suppose since it’s data-loss and the locked-in nature of Vox that prompted me to get sunbane in the first place, it would make more sense to host images on sunbane too.

So how would I do links? That’s something I do a lot in blog posts. It must be achievable in MarsEdit. How about a link to Stephen Fry’s blog (which I thoroughly enjoy reading). Ah, select text, right click and there’s a neat little option called paste link. It seems to have worked.

I also spotted in the context menu several other mark-up options. For example, this paragraph should be a block quote.

I’m sure there must be shortcut keys too, but that’s for another day. It’s past 9 o’clock and I try to limit the learning of keyboard shortcuts to between the hours of 9 a.m. and 12 noon.

By the way, and just spent a tenner on the premium service for Spotify to see how it would work on the iPod touch. The most attractive feature for me, what with the iPod touch being an offline or wi-fi device, is offline playlists. I’m downloading some of my playlists to the device now, whilst listening to the Waterboys Dream Harder over wi-fi. The sound quality is mince. Maybe it was just a poor choice of album for the test. Let me try something else…

Ah yes, Yello, Oh Yeah from my ‘guid stuff’ playlist. Quality is better. So how about something else over wi-fi?

Revolting Cocks, Fire Engine (from Cocked and Loaded – I’m constantly surprised at what can actually be found on Spotify; that’s another large part of its attractiveness). Yeah, this sounds all right quality wise, as well as content wise. It’s a shame that a tenner a month is out of my realm of affordability right now. How come this service wasn’t available when I had loadsa money to throw at tunes?

Right, let’s see how this looks on Sunbane, then a double post to Vox and then I’ll try another post with an mp3 embedded and then a YouTube video.

Testing MarsEdit

I heard about MarsEdit on the latest MacBreak Weekly. Merlin recommended NetNewsWire and then Leo mentioned that MarsEdit was now hooked up to Vox. There are a few things I don’t like about typing directly into the Vox interface in my browser:

1. There’s no preview function

2. If the browser crashes or I inadvertently close the tab, the post is toast (it’s happened — I use Firefox)

3. Cutting and pasting from words gives me funky line feeds in the browser.

4. If I put an image in my post, the cursor disappears and makes it difficult to enter text in the right bit of the post.

So perhaps an external editor and publisher is the way to go. MarsEdit is Mac only and I don’t use my MacBook very often, so, if I like the idea, I’ll need to seek out something similar for the PC. Any suggestions?