SideBar: The Silent Super-Feature

If done right you will almost never notice it.. It is however one of the most used parts of any app: the sidebar.  With MarsManaged we’ve gone through quite a few iterations. Here’s a retrospective on the improvements made, and the thinking behind them.  First Iteration (A): Although it was purely a SwiftUI non-functional prototype, …

MarsManaged July Update: New Palette, Icon, UX Improvements…

Back in Sunny California! Portugal was great: the food, the weather, the people… In between hikes, museums and reading breaks I’ve done quite a bit of progress on MarsManaged: it’s looking better and better. Every day a bit more polished and user feedback is helping raise the bar big time. Here’s how the main screen looks like now: …

Bom Dia

I’m writing these lines from a wonderful terrace overseeing Guimaraes, a small medieval town in Portugal.  The day is sunny, there’s a refreshing breeze and -behind me- a fountain provides background noise perfect for focusing.  As you may have guessed, I’m on vacation. My wife and I have taken two weeks to visit Portugal, enjoy …

Replacing NSTextView text programmatically without affecting its style and format

In the previous post I discussed the addition of Dynamic Date parsing to MarsManaged. In a nutshell: actions containing certain keywords (i.e. today, tomorrow, next month) are automatically converted to target dates.  High level, the flow is as follows: Nice right? Well, I quickly discovered an unexpected surprise: the TextView format was being lost when the keyword …

Schedule & re-Schedule any action with Dynamic Date parsing

One thing is clear when launching a Product: timelines will change.  To handle all these changes with ease, MarsManaged now includes Dynamic Date parsing*. Just type the target date in your own words and MarsManaged will do the rest. Here it is in action:  Here’s some examples of keywords you can use: today (i.e. Did John send …

Adding an overlay when there’s no content to show – SwiftUI Empty States

Empty states. Or to put it another way, what do you show when a view is devoid of any content?  This is an area that not all apps account for. The ones that do though, not only improve the end-user experience but also feel more… complete?  Here’s some examples of empty states. 1. NetNewsWire (a great RSS …

Creating a macOS “About” screen the SwiftUI way

If you’re creating a macOS app, the About screen is that place where you get to “sign” your work. It is also the place where most developers will link to their personal web, thank contributors, etc.  For me, it’s one of the areas I work on last… When I get to it, it always feels great.  …

Badges? Gray Badges? Color Badges!

As I was working on cell badges indicating the number of to-dos pending for a given card it hit me…   The approach I was taking was good, it gave relevant and timely information… But could be much better: what if the flag changes color when you have a to-do overdue, due today, tomorrow or soon?   This …

TextField Recommendations / Autocomplete – SwiftUI macOS and iOS

Another weekend, another set of improvements for MarsManaged. This time, I focused on adding an autocompletion feature for Tags. Let me provide some context first… In MarsManaged, cards may be linked to one or multiple tags. In the below example, the “Welcome to MarsManaged!” card is linked to the tag “Samples” (yellow arrow).  To link one …