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NewsFire 1.3 (v46) Beta

NewsFire 1.3 (v46) beta is now available for download. As noted in my previous posting, the most obvious change in v46 is a new streamlined visual style for the application. There are also changes to menu layouts, a few minor feature additions (support for Atom enclosures, support for author tags, the ability to email an article, the ability to open all unread articles in the web browser), and a new, more fault-tolerant RSS/Atom parser.

This is not a feature-complete release of 1.3. It is being released to get feedback on the changes and (primarily) to debug/stress-test the new parser. Other features will be added incrementally in the coming weeks.

As with NewsFire 1.2, Mac OS X Tiger is required.

  • December 17th, 2005 10:53 pm

23 comments...

Adam...

So far so good. I had maybe 3 or 4 feeds in 1.2 that had feed errors and would never display and they all loaded fine with 1.3


zach...

well, it definitely looks interesting! I’ll test this out a lot more but initial responses: Gorgeou! It feels faster, and looks slickr. Hmm, I think that the top has no weight to, kinda feels a little lopsided, or flimsy, i think. Wow! search is WAY faster, really, big improvement here. i really love the new design of the article pane, it looks a lot more professional and adult(?). I really, really like it. There is a tiny, tiny delay between clicking on a new article and having the summary show up, that I didn’t notice before upgrading, but im being very nitpicky. Hmm… I still really hate the feed information window… grey text on blue is not a good idea, but I’ve never liked it. No worse, but not better. The new email feature is pretty cool, and it actually brought my attention to the post to weblog feature, which includes cocoa.lici.us, which I’m looking forward to trying out.
Call me nut, but I’m still bothered by the outdated metal skin…. this really just doesnt sit well with me. It sticks out, not quite old, not quite new…

All in all, this is a fantastic upgrade, a really nice redesign. Everything seems snappier and more responsive, and, barring some minor UI changes, I’m extremely impressed with this.
GREAT work, David.
Really, really excellent!


Until Apple provides a native theme alternative to brushed metal, the brushed metal will remain. They’re the ones pushing inconstent OS themes out. It’s their mistake to correct.


Eric...

Looks fantastic (after about 5 minutes of use). Another great improvement, as each release seems to be.

One thing that seemed a little odd: The latest post in the NewsFire blog — the one announcing 1.3 Beta: Viewed from 1.2 (v45) I see the whole post. In 1.3 beta (v46) though, only the first bit of the post shows, and is truncated with a ‘[…]’. As in, “support for author tags, the ability to email […]”. That’s a shame. Especially since there’s a whole big mostly unused view right below it. Shouldn’t it show me the whole article still?

Keep rocking,
Eric


David...

One thing I’m missing is that now the feed column is flush to the left of the window. I shove NewsFire to the left of my screen, and with 1.2 I could just click on the brushed metal border to bring it to the front: this was a nice application of Fitt’s law, as I would move the mouse to the left of the screen, and click, without thinking about it.
With the lack of a border now, I have to watch where I click, or I end up opening one of my groups.

The article view is nice, although the changing height of the header depending on what metadata the feed provides is somewhat disconcerting.


AQ...

Looks awesome. So far the best thing I’ve noticed is that is seems much much faster. One thing that I was hoping for (that I think was mentioned in that post about feature requests) is the display of the RSS author item. That would be really great.


Peter...

Is this the proper place for feedback?

First, thank you, David, for a great and ever improving product.

Some issues with the latest beta: Using “Discover Feeds for Current Site in Safari” on Sam Ruby’s blog, http://www.intertwingly.net/blog/, never completes. The progress bar goes about 1/3 of the way and stalls. You can still hit ‘cancel.’ In 1.2v45, the action completes, but no feeds are discovered. They are there it seems, but they’re Atom feeds.

Sam’s Atom feeds contain the full content of the post in XHTML. When rendered in 1.3 beta, there is no formatting at all, just text. No links, no paragraph breaks, etc.

I don’t know how to qualify this one, but if a site’s feed URL is prefaced with the feed:// scheme, Safari’s RSS functionality is launched by default when clicked. If possible, it would be nice for NewsFire to be the default handler for ‘feed://’ links.

Feature request: When displaying the headline in the feed list, can you default to, or add an option for, displaying the most recent item, read or unread, instead of the oldest unread item. My reasoning for this is that I subscribe to some automated feeds (like delicious tags) and some extremely active blogs (like boing boing) where I rarely read each and every post. Rather than marking all unread posts as read, I generally leave unread posts dangling. This means that the headline displayed doesn’t change until it ages off. I know this is particular to the way I use NewsFire, but it sure would be nice.

Thanks again, David. Good work.

Pete


Jon...

Superb! I love the new UI style, and the ‘read..’ links in the new items smart list seem to be working now. Yay!


supratr0pic...

Nice. As long as Safari is brushed metal it makes no sense at all to change the NewsFire theme to something different. Since the two apps work so close together… Also it would be great if you provide a 1.2 download link for people who still work on Panther (quite a few). Thanks.


Ian...

Outstanding! I really like the new look UI – it seems to combine the best of Safari and iTunes to good effect. While it’s early days, this build seemed to parse one feed that the previous version was choking on, so all the signs are good there too. Me likey!


izzy...

Dear lord it’s a sweet machine… er… program!
Thank you dave, it is absolutely beautiful! I can finaly get my penny arcade fix! Oh happy day!


Scott...

Love the modifications to the UI. Seems to make viewing and reading much more pleasurable. Congrats on the superb changes.

I, too, have noticed that feed discovery hangs on a large number of sites. While I can load the site up in Safari in a snap if I attempt to discover the available feeds via NewsFire then it just sits there and hangs while never actually completing.

The other issue I seem to be having is certain feeds are having the links stripped from them. I monitor the differences in the feed parsing between Bloglines and NewsFire, and a few other desktop readers, and some contents of certain feeds seems to change slightly in the sense that links are removed so rather than seeing the post as it was written one just sees a paragraph of words. Follow?

As someone else mentioned, making use of the feed:// protocol would be quite nice. This way feeds could be added to NewsFire via the FireFox LiveLines plug-in. Right now the only way to add feeds from FireFox is to setup LiveLines to copy the selected feed URL to the clipboard and then add the feed in NewsFire manually.

Anyhow, excellent work on this sweet reader!


NewsFire has always supported feed://.


Scott...

How is the support activated? If I click a feed:// in either Safari or Firefox then it is handled by Safari as opposed to NewsFire.


Andy...

Hi David

Great product. Though as you say I wish Apple would make up its mind about the UI (and get rid of the brushed metal).

I expect this is something other people have asked for – or is too difficult but it would be great if I could have the option of opening items in a new browser tab rather than a new window. the option to choose which browser would also be nice.

(Apologies if this is something you can already do and I haven’t worked out how to do it).


In *Safari*: Preferences -> RSS -> Default RSS Reader.



Scott...

Thanks very much David. That seems to have solved the feed protocol issue. Much appreciated! :-)


Simon...

Looking good! I’m not sure if I like the new groups layout, but I think it’s a step in the right direction. Looking forward to all of the other new features comign into play!


Leon...

It looks awesome, but you know what would be even sweeter? If I could resize that there list to *nothing*. One window, space bar space bar space bar, nothing to stop me, feeling the wind in my hair.


oliver...

Fantastic, I’ve used it in the past but never stuck with it. I always went back to NetNewsWire.

I just bought NewsFire.


stirman...

Love the new UI, kudos. Great app.

For the brushed metal hate fan club, try Uno.


Andy...

David. Many Thanks.