Text file nerdery

I hate Word. I hate that we have to use it in the corporate environment. I love Markdown and use it more and more everyday. I have even started sending it to users in my company and let them deal with it. My preference today is Byword. I love the simple interface and the speed. I hate the term “distraction free writing environment” but that is truly what it is. [1]

I looked at all my documents and noticed the large discrepancy in file size.
I decided I would run a few unofficial tests to compare writing tools on my mac.

For the tests I used a 2.66 GHz Core 2 Duo MacBook Pro with 4 GB of ram.


About this Mac

To create the test I used a TextExpander snippet from Brett Terpstra to generate the 3 paragraphs of Lorem Ipsum text for consistency. [2] Each document had 318 words and 2159 characters. The applications I tested included Word for Mac, Pages, Byword, TextEdit included with Lion and Mou[3]. There are many more that I could have tried but these were all available on my machine.

Versions

  • Pages: 4.1 Pages ’09
  • Word: 14.2.1 Word for Mac
  • Byword: 1.5.1
  • TextEdit: 1.7.1
  • Mou: 0.7.1 beta

After running the TextExpander snippet I saved each item out to my desktop only using the name of the application as a reference. Nothing else changed. Below are the sizes for each application.

File Size

  • Pages (.pages): 114,330 – 115 KB
  • Word (.docx): 112,184 bytes – 115KB on disk
  • Byword (.md) : 2,159 bytes – 4KB on disk
  • TextEdit (.rtf): 2,466 bytes – 4KB on disk
  • Mou (.md): 2,159 bytes – 4KB on disk

Then I was curious what the overall time was for each to start up from not running to a blank page. For my unofficial startup time test I loaded up the application in Alfred and hit the return key at the same time as the stopwatch. This is far from scientific but wanted to get a general idea fast things were.


Alfred screen shot

Startup Time in seconds

  • Pages: 4.1
  • Word: 7.5
  • Byword: .5
  • TextEdit:. 5
  • Mou: .5

I was not surprised at the startup time of the applications. Word and Pages are much larger applications that allow some sophisticated layout options.  The reality is we almost never use them. For example I never use any of the math functions included in Word. I am sure there are a few people who may need this, but I am willing to bet it is about .01 percent of the population. What I was more surprised was the actual file sizes. I knew the big programs would be larger but I did not expect them to be almost 29 times larger. I would imagine most people don’t care about the size of their files, but with today’s smaller SSD drives depending how how many documents you create it could add up to a significant difference.

This very basic test just proves to me what I already knew which is using these other editors can have a huge difference in the overall experience.


  1. Another huge benefit of Byword are the versions on IOS devices  ↩
  2. Sample Text:
    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.  ↩

    Sed ut perspiciatis unde omnis iste natus error sit voluptatem accusantium doloremque laudantium, totam rem aperiam, eaque ipsa quae ab illo inventore veritatis et quasi architecto beatae vitae dicta sunt explicabo. Nemo enim ipsam voluptatem quia voluptas sit aspernatur aut odit aut fugit, sed quia consequuntur magni dolores eos qui ratione voluptatem sequi nesciunt. Neque porro quisquam est, qui dolorem ipsum quia dolor sit amet, consectetur, adipisci velit, sed quia non numquam eius modi tempora incidunt ut labore et dolore magnam aliquam quaerat voluptatem. Ut enim ad minima veniam, quis nostrum exercitationem ullam corporis suscipit laboriosam, nisi ut aliquid ex ea commodi consequatur? Quis autem vel eum iure reprehenderit qui in ea voluptate velit esse quam nihil molestiae consequatur, vel illum qui dolorem eum fugiat quo voluptas nulla pariatur?

    At vero eos et accusamus et iusto odio dignissimos ducimus qui blanditiis praesentium voluptatum deleniti atque corrupti quos dolores et quas molestias excepturi sint occaecati cupiditate non provident, similique sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollitia animi, id est laborum et dolorum fuga. Et harum quidem rerum facilis est et expedita distinctio. Nam libero tempore, cum soluta nobis est eligendi optio cumque nihil impedit quo minus id quod maxime placeat facere possimus, omnis voluptas assumenda est, omnis dolor repellendus. Temporibus autem quibusdam et aut officiis debitis aut rerum necessitatibus saepe eveniet ut et voluptates repudiandae sint et molestiae non recusandae. Itaque earum rerum hic tenetur a sapiente delectus, ut aut reiciendis voluptatibus maiores alias consequatur aut perferendis doloribus asperiores repellat.

  3. Mou is an integrated Markdown editor which shows you a preview as you type. It is in Beta now. I used this frequently before I found Brett’s Marked App.  ↩

How To Download Your Data Stored Within Google Products

If you are trying to leave Google or you want a backup copy of your own information – this article from  hongkiat.com walks you through the steps.  Very helpful!

How To Download Your Data Stored Within Google Products [Quicktip]:

Downloading your collection of data stored within Google products can be a tedious job, especially when you have been using Google for years across many different applications. With hundreds of files and photos already uploaded, downloading them one by one is hardly an idea worth considering.

downloadgoogle How To Download Your Data Stored Within Google Products [Quicktip]

(Via hongkiat.com)

Opinion

Last week Ben Brooks wrote a post about the gamification of iOS apps. In the post he had some harsh things to say about the process of not releasing all the features and and turning it into a game versus an Easter egg.

And gamification bugs me quite a bit, because I think it is disrespectful to users of the app. If I pay for your app, why do I still need to jump through hoops to get all of the features of your app? I can only assume it is because making me jump through hoops amuses the developer in some way.

He received a few negative responses due to his post. I personally fee that these may have been unfairly launched, but regardless Ben told us what he likes and what he does not like and why. Today I find this refreshing because he gave his opinion ! You may not have liked the words, terms or phrases but he gave his authentic voice. I agree with his view and welcome more bloggers to say what they really feel instead of beating around the bush.

Project Glass

Stephen is freaked out.  While I don’t see this as something I would use I am more weary than freaked out.  After watching this the only thing I am wondering about is when will the ads will start popping up in front of your eyes.  I full expected to see an Dunkin-Donuts advertisement when he was eating the bagel sandwich or a coupon for the bookstore when he walked in appear in front of his eyes.  I think the intrusiveness of this would end it for me immediately.  My iPhone can do many of the things in the demo, but I can put it in my pocket and enjoy the moment as well.

Project Glass:

I’m officially freaked out.

(Via 512 Pixels)

‘Google Tracked iPhones, Bypassing Apple Browser Privacy Settings’

Clearly this falls under do no evil don’t you agree?

‘Google Tracked iPhones, Bypassing Apple Browser Privacy Settings’:

Julia Angwin and Jennifer Valentino-DeVries for The Wall Street Journal:

To get around Safari’s default blocking, Google exploited a loophole in the browser’s privacy settings. While Safari does block most tracking, it makes an exception for websites with which a person interacts in some way—for instance, by filling out a form. So Google added coding to some of its ads that made Safari think that a person was submitting an invisible form to Google. Safari would then let Google install a cookie on the phone or computer.

Given all the privacy issues Apple has faced this week, with the address book issues, you have to think they are pissed about this one. This was a pretty self-serving and short-sighted move by Google.

Can’t wait to see how this one plays out.

(Via The Brooks Review)

 

Path uploads your iPhone’s entire address book to their servers

Pretty disappointing to know the we were not even given an option to opt-in;  not a good case of building trust with permission.

FYI: Path uploads your iPhone’s entire address book to their servers:

Blogger Arun Thampi discovered something that may or may not sit right about the free social media app Path while packet sniffing the app last night. Upon first installing the app and registering for an account, Path sends each one of your contacts in your address book to their server via a. plist. The .plist includes full names, phone numbers, and e-mails.

Path makes the call “https://api.path.com/3/contacts/add” when you first create an account, and it uploads all your contacts to its server. In most people’s mind, this obviously makes them feel a little uncomfortable. Thampi details the technical aspects of this, and how you can recreate it yourself, in his blog post.

Path’s Cofounder and CEO Dave Morin commented on the situation and said iPhone users will soon be able to opt-out of the setting in an update that will roll out to the App Store shortly. Nevertheless, does that really change anything? He did not really explain why Path is doing this, and your entire address book is still on their servers. You can read Morin’s comment after the break:

We believe that this type of friend finding & matching is important to the industry and that it is important that users clearly understand it, so we proactively rolled out an opt-in for this on our Android client a few weeks ago and are rolling out the opt-in for this in 2.0.6 of our iOS Client, pending App Store approval.

(Via 9 to 5 Mac)

Back to the Future

Is it me or is the new Samsung Note something we have seen before…just bigger?

And didn’t we think that it was a pain in the ass to use the pen – and you would loose it? Look at the sculptured end of the pen…hmmmm.