Filed under:
Base
Menial

Five years ago today, Base 1.0 was released blinking into the internet. Since that day there have been 29 updates varying from minor patches to major upgrades.

There’s still a long way to go with this app. Development is still ongoing and I am looking forward to the next five years. I hope you will all join me.

To celebrate, Base is 50% off for the next three days. Until the end of 18th November 2013 Base will be priced at £9.99 ($13.99 or regional equivalent). You can buy Base from the Mac App Store or from this website.

Thank you to all of you who have helped make Base what it is today and to those whose feedback, bug reports and suggestions are helping to make it even better in the future.

Filed under:
Menial

Just a quick note to say that I will be on holiday from Sunday 24th April to Monday 2nd May and might or might not have internet connectivity.

As always, if you need support with anything from here, please do still send an email. Just don’t be surprised if it takes a bit longer than usual to get a reply.

Filed under:
Base
Menial

A year ago today, Base was introduced to the world as a shiny new 1.0.

Well, perhaps not that shiny.

A bit of a rookie error meant that anyone buying the app couldn’t actually use the license file they’d just bought until 1.0.1 a few hours later. Version 1.0.2 followed the next day after someone found noticed another bug. Both of these were things that should have been found during testing, and served to show how thoroughly you should test an app before releasing it. That mad scramble had a chastening effect and all releases since have been much more comprehensively tested!

Since then there have been 3 feature releases, each introducing quite large changes - from syntax highlighting to a custom table editor - and the user base has continued to grow at a steady pace each month. The emails of suggestions, encouragement and complaint sent by both existing and potential users have helped shape the apps development and show it’s future direction.

There is still a lot of work to be done on Base, and a long list of features to add. The trick will be adding them without adding clutter. I use Base in my other development projects and want it to be an app that you can use without thinking too much. Something that you can dive in and out of without distracting you from the greater task at hand.

So, after this minor reminiscence I’d like to say thank you to all the users of Base. It’s been fun making it, and you enable me to keep at it. Please continue to get in touch with your comments, requests and complaints. They all help to make Base a better app.

Filed under:
Menial

Unfortunately, yesterday the graphics card on my mac died (apparently it’s a recognised problem) and so I’ve been unable to do much in the way of coding or support. Thankfully, Apple have been good about this breakage and have agreed to fix it even though the machine in question is out of warranty. The downside is that while I’m trying to find a machine to work on while that mac is being repaired, email support will be quite a bit slower than normal.

If you need assistance with anything from here, please do still send an email. Just don’t be surprised/offended if it takes a little while for you to get a reply.

Filed under:
Base
Menial
PayPal

Update 2009-05-31 PayPal have now restored access to payment processing. All should hopefully be normal now.


As anyone who has tried to buy Base since Friday (28 May 2009) has noticed, I’m currently unable to accept payments and hence process any sales. This is because PayPal has noticed that I had not fully verified my details with their system to prove I’m not some sort of international fraudster. Which I’m not.

It’s good that they do check people out. Their system as a whole would collapse without a decent level of scrutiny. However in my case, I don’t feel they’ve applied much common sense to the matter. Example:

  1. I need to prove I own the bank account linked to my PayPal account. To do this they send two small amounts of money to you. You verify the amounts from your statement, they are happy.

  2. Something in their system hates my account number and refuses to send the mini-transactions. I cannot verify because they cannot send. Impasse.

  3. I navigate the treacherous pathways of the godawful telephone tree helpline. A very helpful guy says “no problem, just upload a scan of some photo ID and a recent account statement. It’ll take 24-48 hours to process”. I do this.

  4. Their system accepts the scans after 24 hours and sends out an automated email saying I still have to verify my bank account. Grrrrr. Back to the telephone system. The helpline person tells me that the scans were not an alternative to verifying my account, but an addition. She promises to escalate this to the account verification people but refuses to put me through to them on the grounds that “they have no phones”. Whisky Tango Foxtrot?

Anyway. That leaves us here. It’s the weekend, and I’m waiting for the paperwork for a new bank account and for the people at PayPal to get in touch and am still unable to process payments. I am sorry to anyone who wants to buy Base, but if you fill in the form on the product page I’ll email you (one message, no more ever) when this saga is over with a link to buy it at 80% normal price.

Filed under:
Menial

There have been some pretty heavy changes to this site in the last couple of days. Hopefully they shouldn’t actually be very visible. The biggest change has been installing Wordpress to power this blog.

The original blog was self-made using Ruby on Rails and was a very simple affair that started accumulating huge amounts of comment spam and was lacking some features I wanted (namely file uploading and easy archive browsing). Integrating Wordpress (a php-based system) with my Rails site was not actually that difficult. For those who are considering doing this, you will just need a modrewrite rule to redirect /blog/ to the Wordpress index.php file. The tricky part was realising that Dreamhost disable modrewrite when you use Passenger to power Rails as poorly crafted rewrite rules can break Passenger. However they are very helpful and will enable it for you after explaining what not to do.

Now that the blog also has file uploads, I have added some of my old php code snippets to the site. They are a bit old but probably still work. Just be sure to test and adapt them first! I’d also love to hear back from anyone who does find them useful.

Finally, thanks to everyone who has sent feedback regarding Base. It’s been very useful for prioritising features and finding a couple of new bugs and it’s been great to have such a positive reception.