Categories: "IT business"

Markdown Notes App with Outline

Markdown Notes App with Outline

If you search on the Mac App Store, you will find dozens of Markdown note taking apps with a markdown pane on the left and a preview / reading pane on the right.

Many of them also feature a sidebar on the left where you can "conveniently" browse your files. Yay!

Yet, none, and I really mean none of them, offers an option to see an outline of your document in the sidebar!!

Why?

I have notes that are 30 pages long. They are living documents, with a structure. They make full use of 4 or 5 levels of headings. And scrolling up and down to find the relevant part just isn't practical. Having an outline would allow to click and quickly scroll to the relevant part of the document.

I so wish someone would implement this.

2013 and still no usable WiFi hotspots

2013 and still no usable WiFi hotspots

I travelled from Paris to Amsterdam this week... (for a business conference).

I took the Thalys speed train. They offer WiFi on board... supposedly via satellite with fallback to multilink 3G when necessary. The reality is it works only 50% of the time. It especially doesn't work every time the train is stopped in a station with a roof. It's almost a joke. They claim offering internet access at hight speed is a technical challenge... yeah well... I almost believed that until I set up my iPhone for tethering and got a better connection through my phone than through the train's WiFi. It costs some data fees, but on the other hand, I don't have to go through the annoying WiFi login screens.

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Facebook vs Google on social advertising

I’ve been explaining this to people over and over again and I reached the point where I just want to point them to a web page to read through before we can talk some more about it :p

So here it is, in a nutshell, the whole deal about Google and Facebook competing to hire the best engineers and develop the ultimate social network. This is also the deal about Google Buzz, Google Wave and Google whatever other products they pimp these days… including personalized search and maps.

What Facebook and Google want, is to get as much personal information as they can to better profile you as a consumer.

Ideally, they’ll try to do that by looking good. For example: they don’t really push you to volunteer info about your age, place of residence, etc. Instead they merely let you share your thoughts about getting married, or going on vacation, or buying a new car, or considering a new diet, or what not with your friends… but don’t kid yourself, all these status updates, they are basically strings of very meaningful keywords… and they are being analyzed! Right Now!

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15 minutes with iPad: too heavy!

15 minutes with iPad: too heavy!

I was at a conference in Amsterdam last week and although we don’t have the iPads in Europe yey, I had the opportunity to play for 15 minutes with an iPad brought by a US attendee.

My first impression was: it’s really nicely designed, extremely intuitive and responsive. I gotta get one. I also loved the little switch to lock the orientation. Super useful for reading while lying on your side in bed! (Unlike on the iPhone)

However, after a few minutes I started to realize that a) I don’t quite know how to hold that thing (whether with or without the Apple carrying case) and b) it’s getting damn heavy if you hold it in your hand. Those impression were shared by the owner as well as the other people who played with it.

I believe this is going to limit how much you actually want to use that device in different situations. I think it’s actually very impractical to use when you don’t sit down. Also, I believe Apple should actually drop the stupid glass screens: they’re heavy and the glare is just annoying!

Anyways, until then it looks like the Apple product segmentation goes like this:

  • If you’re standing, use your iPhone
  • If you’re sitting in an armchair, couch or other laid back situation, use your iPad
  • If you’re sitting at a table, use your MacBook
  • If you’re sitting at your workdesk, use your iMac or Mac Pro

Ah yes, also:

  • If you want to watch something on your TV, use your Apple TV or better yet: Mac Mini.

Web evolution: make your posts shorter!

Web evolution: make your posts shorter!

Do you remember the days where you'd carefully read through everything your RSS aggregator collected for you? Do you still do that? Do you even open your RSS aggregator? Do you even use one?

Chances are you're using twitter by now. 140 characters max per tweet. And you don't even read them all! You just skim through them.

Way too much information of course.

And yet, many people still write incredibly long blog posts with fancy writing & diluted content. Even bloggers who tweet their posts to twitter. They should know better... I don't want to point at anyone in particular; just click on the averag elink in twitter and see if you want to read all that text... :p

I'm willing to bet that 95+% of the people who click through from twitter to a blog post do not read that post in its entirety. We have to make those posts shorter!