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Pukka 1.8: now with search!

I'm pleased to announce a major release to Pukka, our flagship Delicious bookmarking application. Among many user experience improvements, the major new features are fast bookmark search and full AppleScript access to all of your bookmarks.

Search is something I've been wanting to do for a long time. But Pukka is such a lightweight app that I thought long and hard about how to best introduce the feature while keeping Pukka seeming fast and unobtrusive as people have come to expect. The easy route would have been another window or sidebar, but I feel that the new search bar really keeps the application tight and focused. As one beta tester said, "The response and animation on the search menu is very slick. It feels very light and nimble. Well done."


Pukka's other main new feature is especially useful for developers -- full AppleScript access to bookmarks. Pukka has long since supported posting through AppleScript, which has spawned all kinds of neat workflows such as Yojimbo integration.

But now, any developer can integrate Pukka into their application. You can rely on Pukka having all the bookmarks ready and can query them by a word in any of the fields, by their tags, or by their accounts.

To round out the new features, you can now drag and drop to reorder your accounts, allowing you to setup a preferred account for when Pukka launches. I've added a Quick Reference Guide diagramming out all of Pukka's major knobs and buttons, menu items, and keyboard shortcuts. And the main window is now resizable, autoflowing your tags and description as necessary for the smoothest look and minimal space.

Lastly, on the technical front, this release takes a couple of steps forward, too. Sparkle has been upgraded to 1.5, allowing for more secure upgrades and better collection of anonymous statistics so that I best know which platforms and features to support. And Pukka is now code signed so that you can be sure that what you download is exactly what I intended for you to run.

I hope you enjoy these updates to Pukka. I've got many more planned additions up my sleeve, so stay tuned!

Meerkat 1.2 is out!

I'm pleased to announce the release and immediate availability of Meerkat 1.2, the latest version of our popular and easy to use SSH tunnel management application for the Mac.

You can read more about Meerkat, view a series of brand new video spotcasts (for desktop as well as iPod/iPhone) highlighting its major features, and download a free 14-day trial of the application on Meerkat's product page.

This release represents a lot of work, but especially so in the AppleScript, command-line, and SSH session launching departments. There are a whole slew of new features and enhancements and a number of bug fixes, too.

I hope to write more soon about some of the development challenges in this release, as well as the business aspects of major software releases and balancing a service and product business, but for now, go check out Meerkat!

Scripting allows for the unanticipated

Even though AppleScript itself might not be my favorite language, the ability to script applications on the Mac never ceases to impress me. By opening up their apps to scripting, developers allow users to do all kinds of things that either wouldn't otherwise be possible, or, better yet, that enable workflows tailored to their own needs and styles of application use.

A great example of this is my own personal use of Potion Factory's excellent task management app, The Hit List. Upon reading over the feature list soon after starting to use it, I discovered that you can drag web URLs out of your browser onto THL's app icon in the dock to create a new todo item to read the link in question.

I tend to queue up a lot of web reading for later, so I wondered if it would be possible to reduce the amount of work required to a single keystroke. My solution consists of three main pieces:

  1. The scriptability of both Safari (my preferred browser) and THL.
  2. Red Sweater Software's excellent FastScripts application, which allows for assigning keystrokes to scripts.
  3. The command-line utility growlnotify, which comes with the desktop notification system Growl.

I was able to combine the three so that by hitting Command-Option-Control-I, the current Safari URL is sent to THL as a new todo in the inbox, posting a Growl notification with the page title to confirm that things went ok.

Click to enlarge screenshot

You can download the script here. Just put it someplace that FastScripts can get to, such as in ~/Library/Scripts, and assign a keystroke to the script in that application's preferences.

My Delicious bookmarking application, Pukka, enjoys a fair amount of AppleScript popularity for integrating with organizational apps such as Yojimbo and DevonThink and I'm hoping that the next release of Meerkat, which adds AppleScript support to that app as well, will fare similarly as it too can be a workflow-oriented application. The lesson of scriptability is one that I have taken to heart and I hope to maintain a high level of scripting support in all of my current and future applications.

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