Alternate Option
Thoughts from me.
Tuesday, May 10, 2005 7:58 pm
Spotlight: DevonThink killer
Spotlight continues to surprise me. I exported my DevonThink data out of that program’s database, into actual files. DevonThink had been one of my most-used programs, and also one of the more expensive downloadable software I have bought.

I used it to store all my PDF files and text documents. DevonThink stores all this in a monolithic database, hence text-searching was fast, and this was probably the killer feature. Over time, as a database grew, launching it at startup began to take ages. Slug city.

My previous text storage programs included IdeaKeeper in OS 9 (both now defunct). I then moved to MacJournal, which at the time was free. After a stint with VoodooPad Lite, I tried, and then bought DevonThink. Now, DevonThing’s era is over.

Over the years, there has been disquiet about Apple’s inclusion of shareware functionality into its operating system. The kill-list now includes:
Watson
LiteSwitch
Konfabulator (looks on the site like v2 is showing up real soon now)
Not to mention the countless email programs, and browsers whose features overlapped with Mail.app and Safari.app.

Some of those moves have been more controversial than others, and most have been discussed ad nauseam elsewhere. I think the saddest story is that of Watson. Previously a software that I used daily. I don’t have any evidence at hand, that Apple’s re-tooling of Sherlock directly caused Watson’s demise—that could easily have been due to other developer-related reasons, and moreover Karelia would need to be committed enough to continually keep their lookup APIs updated. Be that as it may, Watson is all but gone now. Worse, now Apple’s Sherlock looks like it’s gone and tripped into the “neglected” bin. At least its link points to a defunct Jaguar site.

http://www.apple.com/sherlock/

I don’t quite think that DevonThink fits right into this category. Still, it is quite sad… I was looking forward to DevonThink Pro a while ago. Now… I have a prediction that I won’t even notice when it is released.

Meanwhile, my Spotlight searches are revealing notes which I forgot I even made years ago, so now I’m glad.

[posted with ecto]

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