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Usually more extended thoughts by Michael Camilleri.

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Switching to 1Writer

One of the things that prompted me to start blogging again was finding a workflow that made it easy to post to Jekyll from my phone. Editorial has been a key component of that. Together with Working Copy, Editorial’s powerful scripting support made it possible to take a plain Markdown document and with a few taps have a file formatted for Jekyll pushed to a remote Git repository (that then called a post-commit hook that updated my blog’s local repository and rebuilt the site).

Unfortunately, Editorial no longer seems to be actively maintained.1 It’s never been updated to support the larger displays on the iPhone X family of devices and, as a consequence, you have ugly letterboxing at the top and bottom of the screen when using on a larger phone.

Obviously that’s gross and an alternative was required. I quickly settled on 1Writer. Key points for me: (1) supports larger screen phones; (2) powerful scripting support (in JavaScript no less, a language that I’m semi-competent in!); and (3) one-time payment.2 It’s not as powerful as Editorial but it’s robust enough to get the job pretty much done.

So far I’ve written custom footnote, reference link and Jekyll frontmatter actions. Those links are to the respective GitHub Gists; I intend to share them through 1Writer’s Action Directory once I’m a little more confident they’re working correctly. ✺

  1. It’s a little bit unclear. The last update to the app was on 29 June 2017 but the developer is active on Twitter and there was a long delay between some of the previous releases so maybe an update is coming eventually.

  2. I’m a bit torn on this. On the one hand, subscription pricing means that developers have a financial incentive to keep their apps updated. On the other, it’s really nice not to have another recurring payment.