Composer for iOS

11/30/2017 19:05:00

If I remember correctly, it was in 2012 that I had a beta version for MultiMarkdown Composer for iOS in testing. It worked, but I was not satisfied with several aspects. One of which was that the core engine needed to be rewritten. This lead me to create Composer for Mac v 2. My “day job” became busier, and I was unable to find the time to get back to the iOS version.

I ended up rewriting Composer two more times (v3 (beta only) and v4 (now on sale)). For both of those versions, I have had a shadow build of a prototype iOS utility to ensure that the core code can be compiled for iOS.

Over the last week, I have finally focused my attention back to iOS in earnest. The protoype app was basically the contents of a single Composer window – an editor pane and a preview pane. It was useful for testing features, but not useful for real work.

As of this writing, it now has the ability to handle files, iCloud, Dropbox, and exporting (HTML/PDF/EPUB/etc.) That said, it’s still pretty minimalist and needs a lot of work before it’s ready for public testing, much less sale.

When it’s ready, I’ll ask for additional beta testers (don’t tell me know – I am not ready for beta testing and will forget who is interested). But in the meantime, I do want to get some ideas for workflows that interest you. I’ve probably thought of many of the ideas you will send, but I guarantee that there are many I have not thought of.

Specifically, I’d love to hear about:

  • How do you want to get text into Composer for iOS?

  • What do you want to do with your documents once you have them in Composer for iOS?

  • What do you think the interface should include?

  • What should not be included?

  • I would love to keep the interface as uncluttered as possible while still maintaining functionality. I don’t want to have rows and rows of buttons on top of the keyboard, leaving barely enough room for a line or two of text. I also don’t want to require users to navigate through 15 screen touches just to make text bold or add a list marker. This is going to take some thought to avoid doing the same crap so many other apps do. Ideas welcome!

Answers to FAQ

  • I don’t have an estimated release date. I definitely won’t be ready for beta testing until 2018.

  • I don’t have pricing information. I don’t know if I will have multiple purchase options (e.g. Standard/Pro) or just a single version. It depends on what the final vision ends up looking like.

  • Settings files can be shared between the Mac and iOS devices (e.g. Themes, CSS, Key bindings files, text expansions). This will allow you to customize your configuration once and use it on multiple devices.

  • It does support hardware keyboards, and key bindings. So you can configure your keyboard commands to work just like the Mac, assuming you use a “real” keyboard. On screen keyboards are different and will require a different interface.

  • Keep an eye on Twitter and the mailing list for announcements. Once it gets ready, I’ll ask for beta testers to help troubleshoot.

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