SimpleMarkPPC delivers again

Hot on the heels of the scintillating version 1.0.2, SimpleMarkPPC continues its glorious march into usability with version 1.0.3.

a preview of the unsaved feature

Here’s what’s new in this useful update:

  • Added a visual marker in the title bar to indicate when the document has not been saved.
  • Added a visual reminder of how to escape full screen mode.
  • Printing is now enabled, although it only prints the raw MarkDown text without formatting.
  • Because printing is enabled, there is now a way to export to PDF, but again, it only exports the raw text.
  • I slowed down the autosave feature which still occasionally interferes with typing.
  • Export to glorious Open Document text format
  • Removed some old code and stuff.

Limitations on Printing

Right now, printing is a pretty limited thing. I haven’t figured out how to print the html rendered text yet, although I imagine there is a way. Part of the limitation is that the actual MarkDown text gets formatted after running through multimarkdown. Likewise, I can’t render a PDF that way because multimarkdown doesn’t seem to support that option either. I’ll keep exploring options, but just beware, using Real Basic to code apps is an exercise in joy and frustration. Joy, because it’s easy to get started and mock something up, and frustration, because there are lots of stubborn limitations that you have to deal to make things work.


Just a note about versioning: I’m not really following any specific guideline with versioning. Right now, I’m sticking with incrementing the sub numbers, typically reserved for bug fixes. Since I still consider the software in a sort of alpha stage (meaning a bit untested), features may be added randomly at any time.

You can download SimpleMarkPPC from its webpage.

— Nathan

SimpleMarkPPC just got updated

Welcome to the new SimpleMarkPPC, kind of similar but a lot better than the old SimpleMarkPPC.

new simple mark opening screen

From the moment you fire it up, you’ll be greeted with some changes that are sure to get you excited for the world’s only PowerPC-exclusive-Mac-OS MarkDown app. Not just the updated welcome screen above, you’ll notice a full screen mode sure to draw your attention away from boring blog posts. A feature also included is a user desired manual save command, so you can be sure your document saved and updated before you retreat to other tasks. A rudimentary Preferences pane features nothing less than a way to change your font and font size (with a couple of caveats). Unbelievable! Most important, the Leopard-like engine beneath the hood purrs with serious efficiency. I made a few modifications myself.

And if that doesn’t sell you, there is even a Help menu!

Best of all, it’s free, and it lets you enjoy the deliciousness that is MarkDown.

Check out a new screenshot and download the app from SimpleMarkPPC’s website.

This latest version is 1.0.2.

Happy writing, blogging, coding, or whatever.

— Nathan

Video Editing on Your G5

I still have a few holes in my exploration of software options for Power Mac G5s. One of those is actually glaring – video editing. It’s glaring partly because lots of G5s were probably used for video production over the years.

On the consumer side, iMovie HD in iLfe ’09 is not a bad option for the home video or the beginner’s project. I was always impressed by what Apple did with the iLife suite. They brought some great tools to the masses.

Final Cut Express 4 was intended as an in between option. It’s more powerful than iMovie but not as extensive as Final Cut Pro. (Keep in mind that the current version of these is simply Final Cut, which kind of makes it all confusing.)

Final Cut Pro is the more robust option direct from Apple. Version 6 is the last one to run on Power Mac G5s. If you can find it, it’s great software. I’m sure there are some video shops that might even still use it for production.

Adobe Premiere 6.5 was the last version of Premiere to run on our Power PC machines. It is not available in Adobe Creative Suite 4 either. You’ll have to dig around for a separate or earlier copy, although After Effects in CS4 will work on your G5. A little confusing.

A final option is Avid Media Composer. Evidently, any version before 3.5 will run on our G5s.

We’ve got options, and it really depends on what you are comfortable and familiar with.

— Nathan

Adobe CS4 Questions

In the last few weeks, I’ve gotten a few emails from readers with great questions, feedback, and encouragement. Thanks for the support!

One common question is about Adobe Creative Suite. As I mention over on the Office page, Adobe CS 4 is the last version to run on our Power Mac G5s. If you are interested in the actual system requirements, head over to the Adobe help site.

What you will notice missing is this – only “Design Premium and Standard” and “Web Premium and Standard” will run on G5s. “Production Premium” and “Master Collection” will not. This is likely because they include software like Premiere, Adobe’s film editing app, and After Effects, a visual effects app, which both moved to Intel only with CS4. The last version of Adobe Premiere to work on G5s is 6.5, which was released back in 2002. The last version of After Effects to work on G5s was included in CS3.

Confusing? I suppose. Navigating old system requirement pages is a skill to be acquired for those of us running old computers.

By the way, I also get asked where to find these old software packages. I’d recommend going legal routes, even though you can’t necessarily buy older versions quite easily. Ebay is an option. Sometimes, I see Mac retailers like Megamacssporting good deals. If you are just wanting to grab Photoshop or InDesign, don’t be afraid to go a little bit older. I’ve done a lot of web design and graphic design using CS2 in the past, and they remain really capable tools for G5s.

– Nathan