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TextMate 2 Alpha Released

The big news today is that TextMate 2.0 Alpha has been released. I downloaded it this evening and started playing around with it. My initial impression is that I love it.

To say that TextMate 2 has been “long-awaited” would be an understatement. Back in 2006, developer Allan Odgaard announced that 2.0 was in the works and would be coming soon. Five years and a complete rewrite later, it’s finally here.

This is Alpha software, and there are a few bugs in it — like preview. But overall it’s been stable enough for me to use. Using the Alpha requires a 1.0 license, so only previous TextMate owners can get in on it. (It will be a free upgrade, but as Marco Arment says, it’s well worth paying for again.)

Only 30 Percent of Apple TV Owners Rent From iTunes?

Strategy Analytics reports the following statistics on how people use the Apple TV:

This report also found that Apple TV users are spending more money on movies and TV shows: 30 percent of Apple TV owners rented movies or TV shows, compared to 20 percent of users of other devices. “Apple is leading this nascent market, which it still considers a ‘hobby’.” says Jia Wu, Senior Analyst at the Connected Home Devices (CHD) service.

This surprised John Gruber over at Daring Fireball, and it does me as well. While I watch far more Netflix and movies stored on a Mac Mini I can access via the Apple TV than I do renting movies or TV shows, it seems odd to me that 70 percent of people don’t rent anything from iTunes.

So I guess I’m in the minority with how we use the Apple TV.

(via Daring Fireball)

52 Tiger: What’s New in iBooks 1.5

Great review from David Caolo over at 52Tiger.net.

Like I said, this update is really attractive. Now, if Apple can get more content and lower prices for books, then I would switch from Kindle for iPad.

512 Pixels: My Hasty Review of the New Twitter iPhone App

Stephen Hackett on new changes to Twitter:

All in all, it’s clear to me that Twitter is trying to steer people toward areas of the service where things like promoted trends and stories can be seen easily. While that’s understandable, I really am not a fan of it taking up so much room in the iPhone app.

(I won’t promise, but hopefully this will be my last post about New New Twitter… for now.)

Ben Brooks on ‘New New Twitter’

Thoughts from Ben Brooks on the recent Twitter changes:

The iPhone app though — it is the most used app on my iPhone. My iPhone is Twitter.

The design changes are just design changes and I mostly think they look nice. These changes are a nice new look at Twitter and I have no qualms with them — even though the top blue bar is a bit bright.

I really like the new ‘Connect’ tab because of the ‘Interactions’ menu that shows not just @replies, but also shows new followers, retweets, and favorites. That’s a welcomed change and I think pretty helpful for all users.

The design has grown on me, and the Interactions tab with new followers, RTs and favorites is nice. So far, I agree — down to the the top blue bar. (I think it’s ugly and wish they would tone it down quite a bit.)

What is absolutely crazy — what drives me nuts — is the ditching of the swipe-to-act gesture. In previous versions you could swipe left or right on a tweet to slide open an action menu. From there you could quickly favorite, retweet, Instapaper, or reply to the tweet.

That was the single most fantastic thing about the app.

Now it’s gone.

I think the reason this was removed is explained by the direction Twitter is moving: gone are the days when Twitter was a tool because now Twitter is an environment.

I’m in agreement here, but according to Twitter Executive Chairman Jack Dorsey, those functionalities will be coming back “at some point”. It’s the “at some point” that concerns me.

But if “swiping” returns, I might be tempted to return to Twitter for iPhone. But for now, I’m setting up shop in Tweetbot, for the very reason that Ben states at the end of his post:

The latest updates to Twitter seem to be saying: “stick around, don’t leave.”

I don’t think that’s a bad thing, but it’s certainly not how I am used to using Twitter.

Not only is it not how I’m used to using Twitter, I don’t want to use Twitter that way. At least not right now. And while I have problems with Tweetbot, it’s far more inline with the way I like to use Twitter than Twitter is.

Daring Fireball: The New Twitter (R.I.P. Tweetie)

John Gruber on the new Twitter interface:

But more than anything, what I liked about Tweetie was its simplicity and clarity of purpose. If anything, Tweetie offered a better, more clearly-defined presentation of Twitter than even the Twitter.com website itself. Tweetie presented three main things:

  • The main timeline, showing the tweets of those people you follow.
  • Replies/mentions, showing tweets where you are mentioned or addressed.
  • Direct messages, showing private messages in a IM-style threaded views.

That’s what Tweetie presented you with, and that, to me, is what Twitter is all about. The app fit my mental model of the service. Three things: what I subscribe to, people mentioning me, and direct messages.

Tweetie became my Twitter when it was released. I rarely used the web interface, and I was happy with what Twitter did with it on the iPhone and iPad when they purchased it.

The “New New Twitter”, however, is far from what Tweetie and Twitter once was. That’s why I’m switching to Tweetbot, so it will become my “New Twitter”.

Brooks Review: Instacast HD, Your Podcast Dashboard

Ben Brooks on the new Instacast HD for iPad:

I love the iPhone, but when the iPad came out and I got a hold of it my consensus was: “oh, this is what iOS was really made for.” The iPad didn’t feel like a scaled up iPhone as much as the iPhone felt like a scaled down iPad.

The same is true with Instacast HD.

I never look at show notes for podcasts, it’s a step I never take. But with the way that Instacast HD presents them, it seems silly not to look at them. Making the podcasts I listen to that much more rich.

Exactly my experience and thoughts. Can’t wait to really dig into Instacast HD. Instacast on my iPhone is one of my most used apps.

Samsung Phone Ad Makes Fun of iPhone Users

The Loop shares the new Samsung Galaxy S II ad:

I love my iPhone (and iPad and MacBook and AppleTV and… you get the picture), but this ad is cute. Still, like The Loop pointed out:

It’s worth noting, though, that even in Samsung’s ad, the Apple customers don’t get out of line.

Neither would I.

Dwolla Takes on Credit Cards

At only 25 cents per transaction, this is going to be a game changer, especially if they can start partnering with larger financial institutions.

I’m sitting here thinking about organizations that do online fundraising but are not non-profits and the boost this could be to them.

(h/t: Ben Brooks)

Jim Dalrymple: iCloud Will Have a Web-Based Interface

In response to Josh Topolsky saying iCloud will have not web interface for email, calendar, etc.:

Daring Fireball’s John Gruber says Topolsky is making a “bad assumption.” That sounds about right to me.

Of this, I am sure — Apple will have a Web-based interface for iCloud. In fact, I expect an even cooler interface than the latest updates we saw with MobileMe calendar and email.

I tend to agree that there will be a web interface. It makes sense to have it for people who use other machines than their own at work or in other situations.

That said, I can’t believe that the interface will be much different for calendar. It’s going to be a continuation of the iPad theme. I can believe an update to the email interface, though.

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