Safari Bookmarklet

One of Yummy’s most useful and unique features is the ability to add new bookmarks to Delicious. A bookmarklet in Safari makes this even easier to use, but there is a price: it’s tricky to add this bookmark on the iPhone.

I’ve love to be able to make this whole process easy, a one click process, but the ball is in Apple’s court on this one. Craig Hockenberry of IconFactory wrote about this (“Difficult for users to take advantage of URL schemes in Safari“) and I wholeheartedly agree.

However, for the moment we are all stuck with what Apple has provided. So, I have a question for you: can you think of a better way of doing this?

The two approaches that I am aware of are:

Do you find the Twitterrific way significantly better than Yummy’s?

What would you like to see next?

Although activity here recently might lead you to conclude otherwise, I am busy working on the next version of Yummy. I have my own internal hit-list of features that I want to include — I use Yummy as well as write it — but I thought now might be a good time to solicit feedback.

What new features would you like to see in the next version?

Feel free to add your suggestions in the comments below or directly by email. I won’t make any promises but I will always do what I can.

Yummy Screencast

One of the hard things about buying an iPhone application is that, unlike Mac or Windows programs, there is no way that you can see the program in action without actually buying it. Even when the cost is less than a latte at your local coffee franchise, the thought of putting down money for something without seeing it in action makes the process harder than it might be.

Much is in Apple’s court. There is no way, for example, that I can make available a demo version. I can, however, do one better one better than screenshots. With apologies for the poor audio quality, here is a “screencast,” a quick overview of Yummy’s key features in video form.

What do you think? Does this give you a better idea of what Yummy is like to use?

Feeling Refreshed?

From time to time users of Yummy ask me how often it synchronises its bookmarks with Delicious.com. I hope to answer that question in this post.

First a quick aside. How did I envisage people using Yummy when I was designing it? The idea was that it should pretty much stay out of the way. You’d open Yummy, search or browse for a bookmark and immediately flip over to Safari to see it. Or you’d start in Safari, add a bookmark that you want to read later and return to what you were doing.

In this usage pattern, if you have Yummy open for more than a couple of minutes at a time I’ve probably failed. Which means that doing a full refresh every, say, thirty minutes would be a waste of time.

Instead, Yummy checks to see whether there are any new updates to download every time you start it. Usually there are not and the refresh is almost instant. In fact, most users should never really need to use the refresh button at all — indeed I almost did not include it in the finish application.

But, with great power comes great responsibility. If you refresh very frequently occasionally Yummy will tell you “Delicious says that you’re refreshing too quickly.” The cause of this is, well, exactly as it says. Delicious will only allow a client to do a full refresh once every thirty minutes or so (the exact time seems to vary). This is not a limitation of Yummy; it’s a limit imposed by Delicious.

Not Synchronised?

Occasionally Yummy will get out of sync with how Delicious sees the world. Usually pressing the “Refresh” button in the bottom left of the screen will bring things up to date. If there are a lot of changes you may want to check that you’re on a WiFi connection rather than a mobile network, but either should work.

Read on if this does not work.

The first thing you should do is not keep pressing refresh. Counter-intuitive perhaps, but sometimes the clock on your handset and those on the Delicious servers are in not sync meaning that Yummy does not think that there are any changes worth downloading. If you wait a while and try again it often works.

The next trick is to change a bookmark. Any bookmark, it doesn’t matter. Maybe add some new text to one, add a new tag, change the post from public to private (and back again). You can do this either using Yummy or on the Delicious.com website. When the change is complete, try pressing the Refresh button again.

I’ve never come across a synchronisation problem in a release version of Yummy that one of these two solutions has not fixed. If you’re not so lucky, the final step is to delete Yummy from your iPhone by pressing and holding the Yummy icon on the home screen. Once the icons all start wobbling, press the ‘X’ floating to the top-right of the Yummy icon and confirm you want to remove the application and all its data. Next time you sync with iTunes you’ll get a clean, new copy with an empty database.

If this doesn’t work, please let me know.

New feature: Mail Link

In addition to all the little details that you don’t see behind the scenes, I managed to include one visible change to the recent 1.0.2 release of Yummy: the ability to mail links. This was a very popular request, so I hope you find it useful.

Simply find the link you want to mail by browsing or searching for it, open the bookmark and press the “Mail Link” button. Mail will open with the subject line populated and the URL in the body of the message,

MyPhoneApps Forum

Recently Yummy has been added MyPhoneApps Forum, a web site dedicated to iPhone and iPod touch applications.

The main threads of interest to owners (or potential owners) of Yummy are as follows:

These threads are dedicated to Yummy. Of course the site has a similar set up for lots of other applications. Hopefully it will be a great resource for all iPhone developers and users and I’m happy to be an early supporter of it.

I hope you’ll never need to post in the bug reports thread, but it’s there if you do find something! I’ll be as active as I can be, answering questions and keeping an eye out for your great feedback.

Yummy Version 1.0.2

A minor update to Yummy will hopefully be available for download in the next few days. It has the following changes:

  • Fix crash on start up bug that was affecting a small number of users
  • Works with a much larger number of bookmarks
  • Improved compatibility with version 2.1 of the iPhone OS
  • Mail bookmarks as well as view them in Safari
  • Bug fixes

It should be a seamless upgrade from the previous version, although the initial refresh may take a little longer this time.

Please let me know how you get on.

Search by Title

One little feature that I probably should have made more of a fuss over when I added it in release 1.0.1 is the ability to search your posts by title. This was a popular request so I was very happy to include it. Of course Yummy has had the ability to search for one or more tags since its initial release.