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Desktop Curtain 3.1.3 and Butler 4.4.4 released

Thursday, September 23rd, 2021

Two very minor updates today; Desktop Curtain 3.1.3 fixes some issues for those running macOS 10.9 (Mavericks), and Butler 4.4.4 fixes an issue related to non-functional keyboard navigation of pop-up menus after using the clipboard window a couple of times.

I’d include links to the release notes, but really, the above is all you’ll find there.

Direct customers can update in-app, or by downloading a fresh copy of the app from our web site (you won’t lose your settings). App Store customers of Desktop Curtain should see the update available in the Mac App Store app—if not now, then shortly.

Desktop Curtain 3.1.2 released

Monday, April 26th, 2021

Desktop Curtain 3.1.2 is out with a couple of fixes.

In both the App Store and direct versions of the app, the isolate frontmost window feature should now work properly on macOS Big Sur. And for direct users, Spaces support has returned—it appears we accidentally disabled it a while back, but just heard about the problem yesterday. Sorry!

We are not allowed to include Spaces support in the App Store version; if you want Spaces support, please follow the instructions in this blog post to Crossgrade to the direct version.

App Store users should see the update in the Mac App Store app soon, if not now; direct users can update in-app or by downloading a new copy from the Desktop Curtain web page.

Desktop Curtain 3.1 revealed

Thursday, March 4th, 2021

Desktop Curtain 3.1 is out today, and like many of its relatives in our app family, it too has joined the Universal world—Desktop Curtain is now a native app on both Intel and Apple Silicon Macs. In addition, we’ve cleaned up the interface for the new Big Sur design language, and its icon now fits in with the others as well.

Direct users can update in-app, or download a fresh copy of the app from our site (you won’t lose your settings). App Store users should see the update in the App Store app.

App Store users: If you updated to 3.1, please update again to 3.1.1, as we fixed a regression that was affecting some users. Sorry about that.

Our Big Sur app compatibility report

Wednesday, November 11th, 2020

With Big Sur’s release, here’s an update on our apps’ compatibility…

All of our apps run in Big Sur, and almost all of them run 100% perfectly.

We’ve tested them all many times, and they all seem to be working as we’d expect them to, with one minor exception (and a “check your version” warning about one of our baubleries). We also have a general heads-up on a permissions request you may or may not see from some of our apps.

Although we’ve tested extensively, some of our apps have lots of features and can be used in many different ways, and we probably didn’t test all of those cases—many of you seem to find ways to use our apps that we never anticipated! So if you do find something that’s not working right in Big Sur, please let us know by opening a support ticket.


Permissions request

In our testing with Big Sur’s release candidate, we were surprised to find that some of our apps ask for permission to write to the Documents and/or Desktop folders. We’ll be completely honest here and say that we have no idea why this is happening. We have some guesses, but they’re just guesses at this point.

This issue did not appear in any of the prior betas (nor did it happen with every app), so we just discovered it yesterday when we installed the final version. As a general rule, our apps—unless you’re doing something that explicitly uses one of those folders, like saving Leech downloads to your Desktop—do not write to those locations.

We’re trying to get an answer as to why this dialog is appearing, but until we do, you can safely say “Yes” when macOS asks if it’s OK to use those folders—becausedo we’re not using them.

App-specific items

Displaperture: Please update to the current version (1.5.2) of Displaperture before you try using it in Big Sur. There’s no in-app updater, so you’ll have to download the new version from our site.

If you launch an older version, you may find yourself staring at a blank whiteish screen with rounded corners, and nothing else on it at all. Unfortunately, this screen sits above everything, including the Force Quit dialog. If you have remote login enabled and access to another Mac, you can connect and kill the Displaperture process, but if you don’t…well, the only way out is a forced reboot.

So please, make sure your copy of Displaperture is up to date before you launch it.

Witch: As a general statement, Witch is working fine. However, you will notice at least a few additional windows, mainly related to things in the menu bar. We’re working to get rid of these spurious entries, but for now, here’s the best workaround…

On the Advanced tab in Witch’s preferences, in the Do not list apps text box, enter this:

Control Center, SystemUIServer

If you have existing entries there, put a comma at the end and add the two new entries. Next, in the Do not list windows, enter this:

Item-0

Again, if you have existing entries, add a comma then that text.

These two changes should make Witch look mostly as it did in pre-Big Sur systems.


We’re working on the Witch issues, and we’ll keep you updated on our progress.

Again, if you notice anything askew in Big Sur, please do open a support ticket and let us know.

Desktop Curtain 3.0.9 released

Thursday, January 31st, 2019

Desktop Curtain 3.0.9 is out with some minor changes and a fix for an occasional crashing bug for Mac App Store users (full release notes).

Direct customers should see an update available within the app (or they can download the full version directly from our site), and App Store customers should see the update in the App Store app.

We’ve updated a number of our apps…

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2018

Following on the heels of Butler, Keymou, Moom, and Witch, we’ve updated the rest of our main app suite (excluding Name Mangler). As always, you can find the updates within the app or by downloading a new version (direct customers), or in the Mac App Store app (App Store customers). Here’s a little bit about what’s new in each app…

Desktop Curtain 3.0.8

Some behind the scenes changes, and a fix for an annoying bug that could cause Desktop Curtain to stall for a few seconds after clicking a Desktop-covering curtain. [Release Notes]

Leech 3.1.2

We’ve rewritten the Leech extension to work with the new rules of Safari 12, and added support for Full Screen and Split View modes. [Release Notes]

Resolutionator 1.1.2

Fixed a long delay before the menu appeared for those using dynamic desktop images in Mojave, and Resolutionator now supports Dark Mode in macOS Mojave. [Release Notes]

Time Sink 2.0.1

We’ve added a checkbox so you can include windows from menu bar apps, fixed a bug that broke Time Sink on 10.9.5, and the Escape key can now be used to cancel interval dragging in the Activity Report window. [Release Notes]

Usher 1.1.17

Yes, it’s no longer for sale, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t get updated. This update adds more fields to the CSV export, you can search for ‘or more’ star ratings by adding a plus (***+), and we fixed a preview-related crash when previewing a huge number of movies. And oh yes, if you use Smart Playlists with subdivisions, try selecting more than one subdivision—notice the search bar now lets you see the Union and Intersection of those selections. [Release Notes]

All of these updates are live now, though App Store customers may not see them just yet—but they should show as available very soon now.

A few minor (non App Store) updates…

Tuesday, August 9th, 2016

We’ve released updates to a few of our apps. These are all quite minor changes; you can read the release notes for each if you’re interested in the nitty-gritty.

We did add a new AppleScript command to Resolutionator, if you’d like to control your display’s resolution via AppleScript … and Witch includes a blurred-translucent background option. To see it, either select the Default item on the Presets pop-up on the Appearance tab, or uncheck the Background color box on that same tab.

  1. Butler 4.1.21 4.1.22 [release notes]
  2. Desktop Curtain 3.0.7 [release notes]
  3. Resolutionator 1.1 [release notes]
  4. Witch 3.9.9 [release notes]

Why aren’t there any App Store updates for those apps that are in the App Store? Because these changes only affect the direct versions of Desktop Curtain and Witch (we fixed some stuff related to the new crossgrade feature). Witch’s blur background may come in a future App Store update, though, if the App Store review team doesn’t deem it a new feature. Remember you can freely crossgrade to the direct version of Witch today if you want the blur!

As always, you can update via the in-app updater, or just download a fresh copy of the app from our web site. (If you happen to be running the macOS Sierra public beta, you’ll need to download Butler and Resolutionator from our site this time only, as we had to fix a Sierra-specific update issue.)


Update: Butler just got bumped to version 4.1.22 to fix two bugs in 4.1.21. Sorry about those!

Desktop Curtain 3.0.6 released

Thursday, August 4th, 2016

Today’s release of Desktop Curtain 3.0.6 marks our second straight update that removes a feature for App Store users. And just like the Witch 3.9.8 update, the App Store version of Desktop Curtain has lost Spaces support. (See the linked Witch 3.9.8 post for the nitty-gritty on why we had to do this … and keep reading this post to see how you can regain Spaces support.)

Other changes in this update are mainly behind-the-scenes, but there is a nice new retina menu bar icon and Desktop Curtain now uses our new in-app help system. Direct users can update via the in-app updater, or by downloading a new copy from our web site. App Store users should see the update in the App Store app shortly, if not now.

To help those who use the App Store version of Desktop Curtain and rely on Spaces, Desktop Curtain has gained a new skill, just like Witch did: The ability for App Store users to freely and permanently crossgrade to the direct version of Desktop Curtain, which continues to support Spaces.

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The new Many Tricks’ end user license agreement

Thursday, April 28th, 2016

Ever since Peter and I relaunched Many Tricks in 2010, we’ve never had an official software license agreement. The closest thing we’ve had is this blog post, which explains limits on the use of our apps across multiple Macs (tl;dr: Use them on as many Macs as you personally use). However, we’ve never had an actual end user license agreement (EULA) that spells out the legal license you agree to when you purchase one of our apps.

Well, we have one now—it’s also permanently linked in the sidebar here, and will be accessible from within our apps. And a really big thanks to Rich Siegel at Bare Bones Software, who generously agreed to let us use his document as a starting point. I found the Bare Bones EULA to be well written, brief, and easily understood; hopefully our version, which has only minor changes, is still all of those things.

After six years, why did we suddenly need an EULA? The truth is we probably should have had one from day one, but never really felt the need. Recently, however, we’ve received inquiries from government agencies and larger companies interested in buying our apps … and many of these customers aren’t allowed to purchase our apps unless we have an actual legal license agreement. So now we do.

Note that this doesn’t change anything relative to the usage of our apps; we still allow you to use one license to install our apps on as many Macs as you personally use. We just needed to have a formal legal software license for larger customers and government agencies.

Announcing our new in-app help system

Thursday, April 7th, 2016

Starting with our recent update to Keymo, we rolled out a new help system. We developed this new system to solve some aggravations we were having with Apple’s built-in help system, and to provide our users with a better help experience. This new help system will be rolling out to all our apps in the very near future.

Here’s a quick peek at the first screen of Moom’s new help:

Moom's new help

There are many aspects to our new help system that should make in-app help work much better for our users—some new features, some existing features working better, and a revamped look and feel.

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