May 29, 2011

10 basic principles behind DaisyDisk

Experience over features

Features don’t matter, experience does. Who cares if the app promises to do everything but doesn’t do a single thing right?

Being the best is not enough

It’s not enough to make the best app of its kind, one must try to build a perfect app (even though it’s impossible).

Design first

Make great design, then implement it in code, not the opposite. While thinking in code it’s easy to lose the scope and roll down to inferior solutions.

Don’t do anything you can’t do right

Ok, you have a great feature scheduled, but the final implementation is less than great. Postponing or even discarding the thing is likely the best idea.

Follow patterns, don’t imitate

Learn from others, try to understand why they’re doing things that way and only then lend the best patterns and integrate them into your app. Take a look at Zune or today’s iPad “competitors,” they’re pitiful, don’t repeat their creators’ mistakes.

Affordable premium

Merely working tools for just 39.95 are so Windows… Try to make premium quality software affordable.

Take advantages of your size

When you’re small, don’t pretend being big. Be fast, be flexible.

Iterate

You’ve made a great thing! You haven’t. Just throw it away and start it anew. Think. Add, remove, change, polish, repeat the process many times. Now compare your result with the original which doesn’t look any good at all…

Be honest

You’ve messed up something? How unexpected… Now go and tell this. Your customers may forgive you, but don’t expect them to forget.

Beautiful and useful

Don’t make anything unless it’s beautiful or useful. Try to stick with solutions that are elegant and needful.

Tags: History

May 18, 2011

Upcoming changes

Greetings, guys.

Here’s a portion of fresh news.

First of all, we’re pleased to announce the upcoming update to DaisyDisk, version 2.0.7.

The first feature you’ll likely notice is favorite folders. Mark a folder as favorite and it will remain pinned to your list of sources forever. Not a big deal for occasional scans, but a real time saver for control freaks.

Scanning multiple volumes is now faster than ever thanks to the recent engine changes: DaisyDisk successively scans multiple volumes of the same hard drive, so the hardware load gets reduced and scan speed increases. This thing works automatically, you don’t even need to be aware of it.

The third interesting feature is related to the stand-alone version of DaisyDisk. Now, after the scan is complete, the application tells you if there’re significant amounts of disk space hidden in restricted folders i.e. taken by files and folders you are not normally allowed to access.

And finally, we’ve made a few tweaks and optimizations to DaisyDisk’s engine, so it handles folders with huge (no, *huge*) numbers of files without any hickups.

We hope to roll out this version in a week or two once we finish polishing all the stuff.

What’s next? There’re a few interesting things we have in a pipeline: I don’t want to reveal all the details right now, but we’ll keep you informed :)

One more thing. Starting from today we’ll try a more aggressive and flexible price model, so you should be able to get a premium quality product with a significant discount. We’re also considering separating Mac App Store and stand-alone versions of DaisyDisk by making certain (advanced) features only available in a stand-alone edition.

Stay tuned.

Tags: Announce

May 11, 2011

WANTED: The Designer

We are looking to hire a full-time or part-time graphic designer to help us create great products.

The Designer must:

  • Create great icons, product websites, bring to life UI sketches and mockups.
  • Take active part in development of each and every product.
  • Be a design nerd: a single misplaced pixel can spoil the whole thing. “Good enough” is not enough.

What you get:

  • Work from anywhere: home, pub or nearby lawn. Just stay online during certain hours so that there are no communications bottlenecks.
  • Once the work is done timely, we don’t mind if you have a day off in the middle of the week or shift your working hours.
  • Get proper attribution in About windows, website and so on. Being a team member, you’re free to show your works on Dribble or post screenshots on Flickr.
  • Take part in making state-of-the-art Mac and iOS applications.
  • Yearly month-long vacation.
  • Monthly paycheck.

How can you apply?
That’s simple. Send a letter to ux@daisydiskapp.com and try to impress us.

P.S.: once we find the Designer, this post will be removed.

Taras, DaisyDisk Team.

May 4, 2011

Sharing code

We love open source. DaisyDisk uses some popular open components that saved us hours of work. So, in order to give back something useful to the Mac dev community we’re making the code of our feedback component freely available.

We’re introducing DFeedback!

A small FAQ:

What license does it use?
We have chosen MIT License. It’s simple, it’s fair and it’s free of all the GPL’s bullshit.

Why not just use JRFeedbackProvider?
We used JRFeedbackProvider in the very first versions of DaisyDisk, but later replaced it with a custom component. While both look similar on screenshots, DFeedback has the following advantages:

  • polished look and feel
  • visual feedback for missing e-mail address when “reply to” is checked
  • optional system info (collected in the background, can be previewed by users)

Are there any downsides?
We haven’t build DFeedback as an all-purpose ultra-flexible component. It’s designed with DaisyDisk in mind, but you’re free to modify it to fit your special needs.

Where can I grab the code?
Follow this link to get full source code on GitHub: https://github.com/AJet/DFeedback

Love DFeedback and use it in your own projects? Feel free to send us a link/screenshot.

Mar 22, 2011

Sharing knowledge: win one of 12 great books

Hi.

There’re some great news we’d liked to share.

We are giving away 3 promo codes to DaisyDisk. Nah… Boring…
We are giving away 5 $10 iTunes cards… so you can download some annoying tunes…
Seen this stuff a million times, no cool. Let’s try something different.

This week we are celebrating the successful start of DaisyDisk 2 by giving away 12 great great books. Most of these have already become live classics and well worth reading by just any person interested in design, data visualization and building software. Almost $500 for us — priceless knowledge for you.

Let’s see what’s in:

The Visual Display of Quantitative Information, Envisioning Information, Visual Explanations by Edward Tufte. The best design books ever. Period.

Now You See It by Stephen Few and “The Wall Street Journal” Guide to Information Graphics by Dona Wong. While not as mind-blowing as Tufte’s books these are worth reading for any person interested in information visualization.

About Face 3 and Designing for the Digital Age by Alan Cooper and Kim Goodwin — essential reading for every interaction designer or software developer.

Designing Interactions by Bill Moggridge, one the most inspiring books we’ve ever read. Great stories behind cult products like Mac, computer mouse or PalmPilot.

Emotional Design: Why We Love (or Hate) Everyday Things by Norman. The name is quite self-explanatory. What we can add is that it seriously affects the way you’ll start looking at things after reading it.

Rework and Getting Real by 37signals, an icy shower for startupers and beginning software developers. Two of the few books about business that won’t make you asleep.

Tapworthy: Designing Great iPhone Apps. An essential book for iOS developers.

Not bad, huh?

Any of these books can be yours, no matter if you are in New York, Munich or Moscow. Refer to this article on MacStories for details.

Why are we doing this? We’re surely promoting our software, DaisyDisk, but that’s not all.
We believe we can make the world a better place by sharing books we’ve learned a lot from. So, if you happen to win one, improve your design skills and contribute back by creating a great website or application, that would be the best investment for us. Spending the same resources on buying ADs is merely useful for anyone ;)

Yours truly, DaisyDisk Team.

Tags: Announce

Feb 28, 2011

DaisyDisk 2, the final

Now these points of data make a beautiful line.
And we’re out of beta, we’re releasing on time…
…almost.
(XXI century, author unknown)

We’ve done it. After being in development for more than a year, DaisyDisk 2 is finally released and is available for everyone.

Version 2 is a major improvement over DaisyDisk 1 which many of you know and love: all main parts of the application have been re-written, refactored and improved:

  • In-app file deletion (yes, finally…)
  • Brand new look, the UI is rewritten on Core Animation
  • Ability to scan multiple disks simultaneously
  • Scan results are remembered while the application is running, can be “forgotten” to free memory
  • More informative disk descriptions, icon overlay for read-only volumes and folders
  • Redesigned Disk usage gauge
  • New scan progress indicator for the Dock icon
  • Scanned folders are added to the list of sources
  • New logic for scanning as Administrator (was Super-User): now you can only scan local volumes and folders
  • FileVault support
  • Support for multi-touch gestures (refer to manual for the complete list)
  • New error handling logic (yep, built-in dialogs suck)
  • New registration system (DaisyDisk 1.x keys will not unlock 2.x)
  • Redesigned About, Feedback, Crash Reporter windows
  • Twitter integration (quite useless, but fun :)
  • Major under the hood changes and tons of tweaks you’ll unlikely ever need to know about :)
  • Localization is temporarily dropped (we’re not accepting localizations for some time, sorry…)

Not bad, huh…

DaisyDisk 2 is available in two versions: stand-alone (classic shareware) and Mac App Store. You can read more about them in this document.

Our upgrade policy remains unchanged: free upgrade if you purchased a license before October, 15 2009 or after September 1, 2010. $9.95 otherwise.

Ok, but how do you know if your license can be upgrade freely or not? The easiest way to do so is ask DaisyDisk itself. Just download and run the application and it will guide you through the rest of the process.

Now a small FAQ:

  • DaisyDisk 1.5.3 is the final version of DaisyDisk 1.x; we still provide support for it, but don’t expect future updates.
  • DaisyDisk 2.x will continue to evolve, we plan some very promising improvements. And no, it won’t make coffee.
  • We do not offer refunds or redeem codes for users willing to migrate to the Mac App Store for free.
  • In the future “stand-alone” versions of DaisyDisk may have extra features, not available in the App Store as Apple’s review policy prevents us from adding certain functionality.
  • The final release of DaisyDisk 2 “stand-alone” is not unlocked with DaisyDisk 1.x keys, they must be upgraded online. Contact support if you have any upgrade-related issues.

So, what’s next? First of all, we’d liked to take a small break and finish some stuff.
We’ll also start working on a side project (no details right now, sorry…) along with preparing DaisyDisk 2 updates. There’re lots of things we have to do, especially with an emergence of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion which plans to be a very interesting OS.

Stay tuned.

Yours truly, DaisyDisk Team.

Tags: Announce, Updates

Jan 14, 2011

DaisyDisk 2.0.5 Beta

A new, better beta of DaisyDisk 2 is available for testing. Download and enjoy while we’re working on the final release.

What’s new:

  • Expiration date shifted to March 1
  • added Help (yep, finally…)
  • navigation history is no longer reset after using in-app deletion
  • Blu-ray discs should now be detected correctly
  • fixed bug with showing keyboard focus on some Macs
  • fixed bug with missing visual feedback for drag and drop on some machines
  • lots of tweaks and fixes

The Mac App Store version of DaisyDisk 2.05 has been submitted to Apple for approval.

Tags: Updates

Jan 6, 2011

DaisyDisk 2 debuts in Mac App Store

DaisyDisk 2 debuts in Mac App Store and is available for purchase right now (direct link).

Now a small FAQ:

– When the “stand-alone” version of DaisyDisk 2 becomes available?

We hope to finish everything in a few weeks. There’s still some work to be done.

– I own a license for DaisyDisk 1, but it is not shown in the Mac App Store

The Mac App Store has its own mechanism of registration and updates for apps, so it does not recognize the previously bought DaisyDisk licenses. The only way to make DaisyDisk managed by the App Store is to buy it again via the App Store.

Note: DaisyDisk may appear “Installed” in the Mac App Store, but the app will still not be managed by the App Store (updates, sharing the license across your Macs) unless the app was bought via the Mac App Store.

– I own a license for DaisyDisk 1, how can I get the discounted upgrade?

The discounted upgrade will be available only as a stand-alone app and not as a Mac App Store app. You’ll be able to upgrade to DaisyDisk 2 once it’s available on our site. The upgrade policy remains the same: $9,95 unless your license key was issued before October 15, 2009 or after September 1, 2010. Otherwise free of charge.

– Can I upgrade from a license for DaisyDisk 1 to version 2 for the Mac App Store?

The only way to do it is to buy the app via the Mac App Store at the full price. You cannot get a discounted upgrade from your DaisyDisk 1 to Mac App Store version 2, it’s technically impossible.

– What’s the difference between the MAS and “stand-alone” versions?

The App Store version does not support scanning as administrator: the feature was removed to comply with Apple’s app submission policy. The MAS version does not support OS X 10.5 (no luck for PPC users) and update/registration mechanisms are changed to ones provided by Apple. Future versions may differ even more, a lot depends on Apple.

– If I buy the App Store version of DaisyDisk right now, will I be able to exchange it for the “stand-alone” version later?

Very likely. We can probably just create a new stand-alone license for you. Note that the reverse exchange is not technically possible.

Tags: Announce, Updates

Dec 22, 2010

DaisyDisk state of the union

First of all, we’d like to thank all those people who supported us throughout the year. Users, bloggers, testers, contributors… You really helped us make a better product.

This year we’ve got a significant increase of our user base. It’s been interesting to learn that DaisyDisk is popular among photographers, designers, system administrators and Apple staff. Some people are even using it for taming multi-terabate data storages.

At the beginning of the year we released DaisyDisk 1.5, a significant update with lots of changes. Many of these improvements have been inherited from the early version of DaisyDisk 2 engine we’ve been working on then. DaisyDisk 1.5.3 is fast and rock solid. It’s also the last release of DaisyDisk 1.x: we need to move on and concentrate our efforts on DaisyDisk 2.

DaisyDisk 2 has been in development for a year and is now available for public beta testing. The “beta” is a release quality product which mostly lacks registration and some stuff tied to upgrade/purchase infrastructure. Once this work is finished, DaisyDisk 2 will be available for download to all users.

The Mac App Store version of DaisyDisk 2 has recently been submitted to Apple for review and if everything goes as expected, it should be available in early 2011.

With the success DaisyDisk has, there’s no wonder it’s been actively ripped off (these folks even copy portions of our site :)): The first DaisyDisk’s “version” is designed for Windows and emerged this summer. The second knock-off, by a Belarusian plagiarist, has just entered beta. Bear in mind we’re not affiliated with any of these “products” and not responsible for their inferior “quality” (i.e. the lack of it).

So, what’s next? In the beginning of 2011 we are to release DaisyDisk 2.0 and start working on updates which you’ll really love. Our basic principle “quality over quantity and user experience over features” has not changed, but rest assured we have some great ideas.

We also plan to expand our product line. Our next application will work on iOS devices (spoiler: this won’t be DaisyDisk for iPhone/iPad/iwhateverelse…) and it is a… well… we’ll let you known details when the time is right :)

Thanks for your patience and have good holidays!

Stay tuned.

Yours truly DaisyDisk Team members.

Tags: Announce, History

Dec 16, 2010

Do great artists steal?

Picasso’s quote is often misunderstood :)

DaisyDisk 1.5 vs rip-off

DaisyDisk 1.5 and 2.0 beta vs a rip-off

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