January 23, 2009
Just a little taste of the new Twitter feature that’s coming in the next release of BlogBridge (Click on the image at left to see a bigger image of) The results of a twitter search (”blogbridge” in this example) displayed in Twittereze.
Notice the ‘Reply’ button where you will be able to reply directly to someone’s tweet, right from inside BlogBridge. Also coming of course is the ability to originate a tweet from BlogBridge linking to a blog post (with linkk shortning). Watch this space
January 7, 2009
To inspire contribution and to ease the development we decided to move the source code of the project from the SourceForge.net to GitHub.com. Our new home is a convenient and transparent public space with code repository, wiki and other useful features. Get the source code, play with it, change it as you like, fork new projects and contribute back to the main rep. We are completely open and welcoming.
Hopefully it will work well for everyone!
June 15, 2007
Good day everyone! This Friday’s release brings two shining new experimental features. One of them extends the intelligence of the application quite a bit, whereas the other deals with the performance and the ease of use.
We tackle more and more information these days making it easy to miss something really important. We think it’s reasonable to assume that you will be interested in topics mentioned often in the feeds you care about. Make sense? That realization led led us to the new spectacular (IMHO) feature — a What’s Hot list.
The What’s Hot feature scans your subscriptions for links that are mentioned in a lot of articles and displays them in a nice and manageable list. Walking through the list, you can see what’s in the spotlight of today’s blogging community and read only these important posts before diving in deeper.
The next thing to check out is our new pagination of the articles list. This addition is valuable mainly to those who have huge queues of unread articles or run immense searches with SmartFeeds.
You adjust the configuration in the preferences (see Articles page), and BlogBridge breaks the list of articles into multiple pages. A pagination control appears at the top of the articles list (see the picture) when it’s needed.
Play with this feature! Our suggestion is to try some very low values for the page size (like 10 or 20) and see how dramatically the performance increases. It really is, and it happens because of the reduced load on the rendering engine.
OK, here’s the confession. I wasn’t comfortable with visiting long feeds before now as it took some time to render the strip of articles, but now I’m no longer afraid of the delays because there aren’t any. (Oh, yeah, and we have some further plans to improve the rendering speed even more soon)
With this new feature there’s no need to limit search feeds to 200 articles as the pagination will take care of the large volumes of graphics and rendering. That’s why we decided to remove the restriction of 200 articles all together. We believe it’s what many of our users expected and will be happy to find out.
These are all major feature for the last two weeks. Please let us know what you think. Please try the new stuff, report the errors and…
June 3, 2007
Hello everyone! This week’s announcement comes a little bit late. That’s because I went to Kiev on Friday to take my IELTS (International English Language Testing System) examinations. It’s too early to judge about the results, but it feels really good. Anyway, let’s see where this weekly release takes us.
First things first, the most noticeable feature is the multi-article selection. This version of BlogBridge lets you select multiple articles from the list on the right and perform all known operations over the selected group: pinning, tagging, saving images, sending links to a friend — everything, but with a little exception. You still can’t use the Post To Blog feature in bulk. It’s simply because we have some special plans for it and it’s too early to remove the covering.
So, how do you select the articles. The methods are similar to everywhere else: you can still select a single article by clicking on it, you can toggle any article selection with CTRL-Click (and it will be CMD-Click for our Mac users next time), or select the range of articles between the current leading selection and the article you SHIFT-Click on inclusively. We are thinking if it’s important to show the leading selection somehow (the article you selected the last) or it’s quite clear where you are. Have an opinion, make sure to share it!
Among other changes are usual performance improvements. We work closely with many users to collect the data on what goes wrong and why in order to make the product be quick and reliable. If you have any questions, recommendations or willing to contribute some code, don’t hesitate to meet us in the forum. We are always open!
May 4, 2007
Happy Friday evening to everybody. BlogBridge Team is speaking.
Today we deploy the set of little but very interesting and important features for you to toy with. Let me start from the most significant improvement first. Many of you still remember these discussions of how to solve the problem of archiving. We need some articles to be stored on our local drives for later reference. What’s more, we often need enclosures to be downloaded automatically during a busy day, so that when the time comes to leave for home, we don’t rush downloading something quickly to listen on a way back. Finally, the dreams come true.
What you see in the picture to the right is the updated look of the Advanced tab of the feed preferences dialog. There are two sections added: the custom update period (right, you can set it per-feed now, and it works great!), and the auto-saving controls for both articles and enclosures. As you can see, I have both features enabled and saving content to different directories. Certainly, you can use the same for both; it’s completely up to you.
What’s remarkable is that we have a very flexible file naming schemes right off the bat. For the articles saving, for example, I selected the date and title format, which means that every time the article comes, the application creates the directory with the date of arrival inside the selected main directory and puts the article in a cute, fully customizable through CSS style sheets, HTML file. The name of the file itself will be the name of the article.
For the enclosures I used a bit different naming format. I like enclosures to be saved in the same directory, but still need to know which feeds they came from. That’s why I used the feed – title format. The name of the file will be the original name of the enclosure prefixed with the name of the feed. Fun, isn’t it?
The combination of these features is so powerful that, truth be told, I get creeps on my back every time I think what ELSE could I do. Just to name a couple of usages, you can make a SmartFeed to look for articles you like and ask it to save the findings in some folder. This folder can be your pocket PC’s shared folder, for example, and you get all interesting news delivered right to your portable assistant, so that you can read and listen to them while you are on the go. As for enclosures, what if you were saving them directly to your iPod or iTunes music directory?
Among other updates, some minor GUI fixes mainly for Linux users, the CTRL-ScrollWheel support for zooming in and out, Digg feeds fix and amazing new feature for the plug-in developers. Now you can add your own commands to the context menus of the application.
See you soon and have fun!
For your clicking pleasure:
April 20, 2007
Alright, the deployment has just finished and it’s time to highlight some of the most important changes of this week.
Let me start by traditional note that we fixed another nice set of bugs and annoyances you, our beloved users, were actively reporting during previous iterations (here’s the round of applause for you). Check out the list to get a better idea of what has changed.
There’s one very nice feature added, we thought everyone actively using PIN feature would welcome. Now you can configure BlogBridge to tag articles you are pinning automatically. I personally, like to use this feature during morning news scanning to mark pieces I would love to get back to and read more carefully later. Certainly, you can find more applications to this addition. To start experimenting, open the Preferences dialog on the Tags page and configure the tagging when pinning with the space-separated list of tags.
There’s a nice counterpart for this feature. A couple of hours ago we added a new page to My BlogBridge site with the list of all links you tagged in the BlogBridge desktop client. Note that this page shows only the links stored on our server, not del.icio.us (see Preferences / Tags page), so be not surprised to find it empty if you are an avid del.icio.us user. This feature is very fresh though and will grow more soon, so don’t forget to water it with your thoughts regularly.
A long requested feature — Hiding Guides without Unread Feeds — is also available for testing. You can find a single filter box on the Preferences / Guides page. Set the color to whatever you like or mark read Guides as hidden and BlogBridge will take care of everything else. It’s very much analogous to what we have for Feeds, and I believe no one will find it difficult to grasp. If you have any further ideas as to what types of Guides could be color coded, make sure to drop us a line. The forum is at your service.
And the last bit of advancement that I have a pleasure to highlight in this brief review is Per Feed Article Sorting… You are welcome! The life has become much simpler, hasn’t it?
If you like something, don’t like something, have any constructive criticism, or another ground breaking idea, we are always open. Write us, discuss ideas in our forum, take active part in the life of the community!
Here comes the traditional links giveaway:
April 7, 2007
Hi BlogBridgers! This week we have something really interesting for you to play with. Let me start with the most vivid feature of the last two releases — Plug-in Support. Two weeks ago we extended the application with some kind of framework that allows to install and manage extensions of various types, like Themes, Keybindings, and SmartFeeds. Today we append Resource and Code-based plug-ins to this list in order to make the picture more complete. Learn what are these creatures and how to use them on the pages of our public wiki.
What’s really important here is that using this fun stuff you can change the look and feel of the application almost completely to tune it to your personal taste without waiting for the team. Of course, we continue to work on the project actively and will deliver more and more wonderful features, but this is a very nice opportunity to indulge yourself with a new set of icons, custom colors and fonts, new SmartFeeds and who knows what else. And don’t forget to share your creations with friends!
One little note though: the framework is in the early stage of development, so please expect changes. They will be announced in this blog.
What else? The next most noticeable enhancement is database compacting and backup. From now on, when you close the application, it will make an effort to compact the database to provide the faster startup speeds and better (read more reliable) operation. If you run BlogBridge most of the time, you can call the compacting and backup commands using the Tools menu. You’ll like it!
There’s a long list of fixes and enhancements delivered by this release that were not voiced here, but you can always see them in our history of changes. Yes, and we are looking forward hearing from you: use forum, write letters, leave comments.
For those who are new to weekly releases, you can start the latest weekly build directly from our server.
February 23, 2007
It’s Friday and it means we are releasing another sweet development version — BlogBridge 4.6 Weekly. Most of efforts during the past two weeks were channeled into the site development, mainly into personalized My BlogBridge part of it. However, there are also some interesting and important changes to the desktop client.
HTML Editor. Most of us normal users, the amateur bloggers, are pretty satisfied with the rich post editor, but as a professional mini-publisher, you may need something more sophisticated giving the advanced level of control over the code being posted to your blog. The plain HTML editor gives you this low level and lets you carve the code precisely as you like.
Post code cleaning. Before the post is sent to your blog, it’s pre-processed and beautified now. Pre-processing includes removing redundant leading and trailing code, and replacing HTML entities of national symbols with their plain UTF-8 (Unicode) versions so far, but this list will grow as we discover more issues. Yes, I know it’s geeky, but at least you know it’s there now.
Aside from the above mentioned features, there are several important bug fixes and little improvements. Check them in the history of changes.
For those who are interested yet not positive where to get this version, here’s the link to the BlogBridge Weekly version installer. Enjoy BlogBridge and let us know what you think.
January 7, 2007
We are lucky to have Al Tepper, who was a leading Green Lifestyle blogger and is now Head of Marketing for the UK’s ‘Ethical Retailer of the Year’ to join us as our topic expert and guide for this community. Check out his new “Green Planet” expert guide” and learn more about Al and see his recommendations.
Here’s Al’s own introduction to the new guide:
“The Green Blogosphere has blossomed in the last two years into a professional and vibrant space dedicated to exploring the reality of our situation and the multitude of solutions to the problems we all face. This guide draws together the best of the green blogs covering business, culture, innovation and news to help you stay ahead of the green curve.”
We continue to actively recruit more and more people with demonstrated expertise (some of them actual celebrities) to join our cadre of BlogBridge topic experts. If you are or know someone who would be interested, please contact us directly via email.
Haven’t heard about them? You can read more about our expert guides in our Introduction to Expert Guides and our original announcement “Of Topic Experts and Topic Guides”. Basically it’s our free and growing library of great, categorized blogs and feeds, and it is our answer to what is the #1 question that we hear: “So this blog stuff is cool, but where do I find one?”
August 11, 2006
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It’s Friday and we are releasing another scheduled version of BlogBridge — version 3.01. It’s the Weekly Development build which is feature complete and relatively stable. Give it a whirl and tell your friends about us!
What’s new in this week’s version of BlogBridge? We need to say that this release was full of cosmetic changes, like showing shortcuts in the main menu, and changing layout of Reading List addition dialog. However, there are also some fresh additions to play with.
Subscribe to Reading List command was added to Guides menu. It gives you a quick way of subscribing to a Reading List through adding it to some existing Guide or creating a new one. Yes, and we have our suggestion picker there too!
Most of you dealing with secured feeds know that sometimes BlogBridge keeps nagging to enter the password you don’t know. You will be able to tell it directly that you “don’t know” the answer and it will remember this. Also, there’s the command in Tools menu to forget all passwords.
Before now it wasn’t quite clear which of the Reading Lists in your subscription list were still active and which of them had died long ago. Now we show dead Lists in gray (see the list of Reading Lists in the Guide properties dialog).
The last update is the ability to enter your existing account information during the installation, so that the next time you will be installing BlogBridge somewhere, it’ll be easy to start synchronizing with your existing account right away.
Check out our history of changes for a brief summary of what’s in this release.
Use the Java Web Start launcher to download and start the updated version.