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Hands On: Celtx script (iOS, OS X)

08/24, 8:16am

The cheap alternative to Final Draft goes free on iOS

It turns out that Celtx is practically a platform rather than just one single piece of software: it's a system for film and video production that begins with a scriptwriting app and goes on up into storyboarding and other things we're not going to look at. For you only seem to realise all this when you finally cave in and wonder what the name means. Until then what you think of as Celtx is actually called Celtx script 2.9 and it's a word processor for screenwriters.


Hands On: Documents - Word Processor and Reader for Microsoft Office 5

08/10, 10:26am

Don't buy it: simple as that, really

This gives us no pleasure to say, but you should not buy Documents -- Word Processor and Reader for Microsoft Office 5.4. Nobody should. What it does, it does poorly, and it is intended to be a replacement for other apps that are freely available, and maybe not infinitely better but at least geometrically better. Documents is a throwback to a time when we didn't have Microsoft Word or Excel on iPads.


Hands On: Phraselogy 2.0.6 (iPad)

07/23, 10:01am

It's no Word but this Drafts sister title is excellent

Agile Tortoise is the developer of four apps. We enthused about Terminology, we raved about Tally 2, we fair evangelise Drafts 4 daily. That leaves Phraseology 2.06, and of course after those three we went in expecting to like it -- but we also thought we might not. For Phraseology is a word processor, and we have already written thousands of words in the note-taking Drafts 4. A trip into Phraseology, therefore, became simultaneously a practical question of whether we needed it, and a more philosophical one of what exactly the difference is between a note-taking app and a word processing one.


Hands On: Microsoft Word 2016 (OS X)

07/17, 11:02am

The new version of Word for OS X is very, very good -- but so what?

If you have to use Microsoft Word at work, go get this now and be delighted with it. If you don't have to, if you're looking for a great word processor, it's just a little harder to recommend Word quite so readily. It's harder, and it's also very unfair, as 30 years of using various versions of Word have left us with biases against it. Word earned those biases, it's just difficult to think about going back to relying on it, even though Microsoft Word 2016 is the best and the shiniest version ever.


Hands On: TinyWord 2.0.0 (OS X, iOS)

07/10, 9:48am

Lightweight word processor does what it says

Back when Microsoft Word was king, you could do well selling a different word processor if it could open and save documents in Office format. You also needed to be cheaper, and it would help if you were easier to use -- neither of which, to be fair, were hard to pull off. Lastly, if you're in an App Store, finding a way to get the name Word in your title helped people find you. TinyWord 2.0 wants to tick every one of those boxes.


Hands On: Haven 1.0 (OS X)

06/11, 1:22pm

Serene and perhaps inspirational writing tool

You've already got a word processor, you've already got a text editor -- yes, you have, it's on your Mac and called TextEdit -- and maybe you're not clear what the difference is. More likely, you don't care all that much, and instead just write in the application you prefer. Whichever app that is, though, the fact that you've already got it means new word processors like Haven 1.0 have to work hard to get you to switch. They have to offer you something different -- and in Haven's case, what it doffers is a little bit of art.


Hands On: SmartDown 1.0.4 (OS X)

04/25, 8:00am

Text editor and outliner, all with Markdown

It's not as if you are stuck for applications to write in: whether you go for Microsoft Word or TextEdit, there are just about 40 different word processors for every man, woman and child on the planet. It's just that not many work in Markdown, which is a form of writing, a format, and a syntax that works well for the web. SmartDown is one of those, and it works very well.


Hands On: Nisus Writer Pro 2.1 (OS X)

03/28, 10:37am

The beloved word processor is still a contender

The very name Nisus may bring you back to the 1990s and if it doesn't, then one look at the software possibly will. That's cruel: it is nothing less than fantastic that Nisus has survived where so many other word processors have died, crushed under the force of Microsoft Word. So this version, Nisus Writer Pro 2.1 should be celebrated. It's just that there is something a tiny bit old about how it looks and feels.


Hands On: OutlineEdit 1.3.2 (OS X)

03/15, 4:00pm

Easy to use outlining software with interesting features

OutlineEdit consciously slots in to the middle of the pack for outlining software. On the one hand, it is more powerful than the tools built in to word processors like Microsoft Word. On the other, it's more affordable than what is effectively the industry leader in this field, OmniOutliner.


Pointers: Pages 5.5.2, 2.5.2 (OS X, iOS)

03/02, 7:55am

Get more from Apple's deceptively powerful word processor

You probably own Apple's Pages, and you may even have opened it. If you did, what you think depends on what you're used to: new users just dive right in and start typing, while we've heard Word users complain that it simply isn't powerful enough for them. This is an odd one: they are actually right, but not in the ways they expect. Pages does lack some of the very heavy-lifting word processor functions that Word has, but few people use those. What Word fans think is missing from Pages is the more general day-to-day features that in fact it has, and has very well.


Briefly: Pandora 5.7, new Wrise Mac word processor

01/27, 12:00pm

Pandora's iOS app receives redesign, new mini-player

Music discovery app Pandora has announced an update to its iOS app, featuring a new design and additional components. Pandora allows users to create personalized music stations that play their preferred music. The latest version (v5.7) offers a refreshed design that improves the ease of shaping a station, including a new Personalization icon for quick access to one's history, and being able to "un-thumb" a song previously marked "up" or "down" by re-tapping the Thumb icon.


Hands On: Writeroom (OS X)

12/23, 1:57am

Immersive, minimalist word processor still a keeper

Work-related writing beckons, and yet you can't help but drift over to check your email, fiddle with iTunes or meander to the black hole that is social media. Word processors are among the easiest working windows to stray from -- which is why Hog Bay Software developed Writeroom, a word processor that provides a full-screen, minimalist environment for a distraction-free process. Though Writeroom (priced at $10) last received an update back in 2012, it continues to be an enjoyable, useful tool in letting the words flow.


Box plans Notes collaborative word processor for cloud storage service

09/16, 11:58am

Text editing tool brings Box in line with Google Docs

Cloud storage service Box has revealed a future update to its apps and service which will bring it more in line with offerings from Google and Evernote. Box Notes is a word processor which, in a similar way to how Google Docs operates within Google Drive, allows users to create and edit documents directly in Box storage accounts.


Briefly: iBattz launches new battery case, SecureWords app released

08/23, 2:12pm

Mojo Refuel made for iPhone 5

iBattz has announced the immediate availability of its latest removable battery case, the Mojo Refuel. The case provides additional battery life to the user's phone with its two interchangeable 2200mAh batteries. The case is intended for reducing one's need to recharge, and can provide enough power to last through a long work day or a power outage. Currently available in matte black, the Mojo Refuel is available online for $90.


WriteRoom hits 3.0, adds session tracking, more

10/31, 8:05pm

Now fully Lion-compatible, new theme options

The full-screen word processor WriteRoom is now at version 3.0, which has been re-written to support OS X Lion. It also now makes it easier for users to create and share "themes" or custom settings, and features optional ways to track writing progress through the use of session tracking and logging. The program also offers reading time statistics, faster handling of large documents and more.


Ommwriter word processor offers Zen-like meditative focus

11/20, 5:25pm

New word processor features simple drag-over menus

Herraiz Soto, an independent creative agency, has launched Ommwriter, a new word processor with a "Zen-like meditative focus." The software offers a choice of ambient music themes that play in the background, along with a variety of keyboard audio-feedback themes designed to make typing a pleasant experience. The software works within one window, with drag-over activated menus to the right of the workspace.


Nisus Writer Pro 1.3 upgrades document manager, more

07/01, 4:20pm

Nisus ships NWP 1.3

Nisus has added a new document manager and other new features to its word processor in Nisus Writer Pro 1.3. The document manager can now manage any file located on internal or external drives. Users can create file groups or use predefined smart groups. Version 1.3 also adds a style library, a selection history, menus that convert to toolbars and an advanced search that utilizes Apple's Spotlight technology. Automatic character, word and paragraph counts are new, along with an option for automatic capitalization of the first words in each sentence.


Apps: Currency Assistant, Schreiben, Redhand

06/22, 3:10pm

Album Assistant,Fantasktik

  • Currency Assistant 3.1 ($19) allows users to convert values between 175 world currencies (all major circulating currencies plus the 16 Eurozone legacy currencies). The software also automatically updates exchange rates over the Internet using the rates published by the European Central Bank, the Bank of Canada, the International Monetary Fund, and the Bank of Italy. The new release allows the Rate indicator and the Rate pop-up menu to show either currency names or ISO codes. Users can also now display the names of the currencies in a converter by placing the mouse pointer over its Switch Currency pop-up menus. [Download - 2.2MB]


  • Apps: iPhoto2Gmail, Calico, Searchlight

    06/01, 11:00am

    Bean, myNotes

  • iPhoto2Gmail 1.1 (free) is a plug-in for iPhoto which allows users to send images through a Gmail account. Users can select which pictures they would like to send and then add contacts, a subject, and a message to the email. The plug-in also allows users to define how large they want the sent image files too be. The new release is now able to preserve EXIF and ColorSync data when it resizes images and can remember the last used resizing and sending options. [Download - 0.7MB]


  • Apps: Blackout, SongGenie, JuiceDrop

    03/27, 12:55pm

    Schreiben, Tags

  • Blackout 2.0 (free) is a utility that can dim a scree regardless of the monitors current hardware or gamma settings. The application works by placing a transparent window over the desktop. The window provides the dimming effect and passes keystrokes and clicks through to underlying applications. This new version of Blackout provides better integration with Spaces and automatically moves the dimming window to a users current space. [Download - 0.1MB]


  • Apps: iPresent It, Cocktail, PDF Browser Plugin

    03/06, 4:55pm


  • iPresent It 2.4 ($18) allows users to convert PowerPoint, PDF or Keynote presentations into slideshows that can then be synced with an iPod. The software optimizes shows for viewing on an iPod or Apple TV and can automatically detect the presentation resolution and ensure that the resulting formation is formatted properly. Version 2.4 has added additional support for the new Keynote '09 presentation file format. [Download - 0.9MB]


  • Apps: Papaya, MacTubes, Schreiben

    01/19, 8:35am

    Scribblet, Floola

  • Papaya 1.3 ($27) a tool for quick filesharing with distant parties. It operates as a web server, automatically producing URLs that can be sent to peers; once configured, users need only drag files to the program's Dock icon to enable sharing. Version 1.3 includes improved scaling, support for secure HTTP, an improved dock menu, better network performance, hot-key shortcuts for taking and sharing screenshots and several other enhancements and fixes. [Download - 2.4MB]


  • Apps: FlashVideo Converter, Speedy Mac, Sound Grinder

    11/06, 6:35pm

    Happy Holidays!, Nisus

  • FlashVideo Converter 2.2 ($100) is a tool for converting Flash SWF and FLV files to video files such as MP4, MOV and MPEG. Version 2.2 has improved the overall video quality as well as the movie size optimization feature. An option for selecting background color is also now available along with other various bug fixes. [Download - 15.1MB]


  • First Look: Celtx, open source screenwriter

    08/26, 4:00pm

    Celtx, screenwriter

    If you’re interested in writing a screenplay, a teleplay, or a stage play, you could use an ordinary word processor. Unfortunately, each script style requires different page margins and formatting conventions. You could take the time to define these formatting styles yourself, or you could just use a special scriptwriting program that does this for you automatically. Rather than pay $200 or more for a commercial screenwriting program, try the open source Celtx scriptwriter instead.


    Apps: Glide, MiLife 1.1, ShoveBox 1.2, more

    06/23, 5:40pm

    Apps Glide MiLife ShoveBox

    • TransMedia on Friday unveiled a new version of its integrated contact and email management interface, Glide, adding support for Ymail, Rocketmail, and Yahoo Mail, integrating with them the service's advanced security and file sharing features. Glide allows users on Mac, PC, Linux, the iPhone, and other mobile devices to have one-login access to multiple email accounts, as well as word processor-like file handling, and support for images and large attachments.

    • BravoBug Software released MiLife 1.1 ($15), an update to its journaling and note-taking software, adding over a dozen improvements to the application. MiLife now supports rich-text, with simplified photo importing, and AES-128 bit encrypted passwords.

    • Wonder Warp Software unveiled ShoveBox 1.2 ($25), adding a "Save PDF to ShoveBox" option and basic AppleScript support into its productivity application. Shovebox also features several other enhancements and bugfixes.

    • Macware on Friday announced version 1.8.000 of Logo Design Studio Pro ($60), adding to the application support for SVG files, a new browser, over 1300 pre-designed SVG objects, the latest version of the Sparkle framework, as well as other minor bug fixes and enhancements.

    • Toronto-based Agile Web Solutions introduced 1Password 2.6.5 ($35), featuring improved support for Firefox 3 and the Safari 4 Developer Preview. The update also offers functionality for DEVONagent 2.3.1, OmniWeb Sneaky Peaks, and Flock 2, as well as other stability improvements.

    • Dejal unveiled Simon 2.4.1 ($30), an update to its site-monitoring tool, which tests web pages, FTP, DNS, local and remote ports or volumes, and other services for changes or failures. The update offers several important fixes for the Port service and notifier plug-in, among others.


    Mellel 2.5 adds cross referencing prowess

    06/13, 1:20pm

    Mellel 2.5

    RedleX has released Mellel 2.5, a significant update to the leading word processor for Mac OS X. The new release adds robust cross referencing capabilities, allowing users to refer from one point in the text to another (e.g., "see page 15"). Mellel's reference entry dialogue allows, accordingly, to create reference formats, composed of different elements such as reference to the page number, position in the text (above, next page, below, etc.), page range, and so on. Users can also save and re-use such formats again and again, making the necessary modifications as they go along.


    Nisus Writer Pro 1.1 adds Comments, Mail Merge

    05/23, 10:50am

    Nisus Writer Pro 1.1 ships

    Somewhat over a month after the release of the preview version, Nisus is shipping the final edition of Writer Pro 1.1, its signature word processor. Features of the app include multilingual text, non-contiguous selection, and a special fullscreen mode. Character sets include Latin, Cyrillic, Greek, Chinese, Japanese and Korean; documents are saved in the RTF format, but the program can read Word, WordPerfect, Open Document and AbiWord files.


    Nisus Writer Pro 1.1 Preview available now

    04/15, 2:10pm

    Nisus Writer Pro 1.

    Nisus Software has announced the upcoming release of Nisus Writer Pro 1.1 Preview, the latest version of the company's alternative word processor. This release adds several new features including Comments, Mail Merge, Go to Page, and more. Also added is a Large Caret option, as well as several additions and enhancements to the Nisus Macro Language. Nisus Writer Pro 1.1 will be available later this Spring for only $80. A CD version is available for an additional $10. A three license Family Pack is available for $100. Nisus Writer Pro uses the same core as Nisus Writer Express, but sports several additional or expanded features including a Table of Contents generator, indexing, bookmarks. There's also attribute sensitive search, that allows you to locate items in documents based on their formatting.


    New versions of Nisus Writer Pro, Express

    01/25, 7:15pm

    Nisus Writer Pro, Express

    Nisus Software has released Nisus Writer Pro 1.0.3 and Nisus Writer Express 3.0.2. These new releases, which are free to existing users of Pro and Express 3, fix some image display and footnote issues. Writer Express is a scaled-back version of Writer Pro, missing features such as indexing and tables of contents; it nevertheless shares common elements, such as the ability to open Word, WordPerfect and AbiWord documents, as well as view text in scripts such as Arabic, Chinese, Japanese and Hebrew. One of the major upgrades from earlier versions of Express is "floating" graphics, enabling text wrap around them.



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