Weekly Progress: 2 September 2018

Geez, it’s already September. My, how time does fly…

I had originally announced that Beta 0.6 would come out in July. Obviously, that was before I lost my main development machine, but now that I’m working from a backup device, I can begin to plan for when this beta release will be. I’ll share more of my thoughts on that down below.

For now, I actually have a few other exciting things to talk about!

Customize Toolbar

At long last, it is here!

2018-09-02 - Copy

This is the new, fancy Customize Toolbar dialog!

You can take any* menu item and put it onto the toolbar. You can decide whether to show the text on the menu item, and what that text should be. You can add separators, move things around, and take off anything you don’t want.

I tried my best to add as many flexibility options as possible. Customizability is key, and here we give you a lot to customize! This was something I’ve been wanting to add since the very beginning of the project, and I’m so happy it’s finally here. I’d say it took a lot of work, but a good majority of the coding took place in one night, and it went off without a hitch. Everything after that has been cosmetic improvements and small bug fixes.

I look forward to seeing you all being able to utilize it once the next beta comes out.

(* Any menu item that currently doesn’t have a function will disappear from the toolbar after you add it. As we get closer to 1.0, more menu items will be given functions, and will thus be able to be added.)

As I’ve mentioned in a previous progress post: if you manually customized your toolbar in Shine 0.5.3 or earlier, your customizations will disappear with 0.6, because I needed to change how the XML file was laid out. After this, we should be good, though. 🙂

Shine Monitor

One thing you may have noticed in some of the previous change logs is a note about how Shine and Shine Monitor aren’t on speaking terms right now. Well…

It seems the therapy sessions have started to make a breakthrough! We’ve determined that a change in Shine Monitor’s personality has made it really hard for Shine Monitor to talk well to other programs, such as Shine. Shine Monitor believed it was still talking with Shine, even after Shine stopped listening to it.

We’re working on a resolution for the two friends so that they can start to get along again soon. Once that happens, we can start to see some cool things come out of their friendship!

Other Changes

As always, there’s been some other work that’s not noteworthy enough to get its own section. Here, I’ll list them off:

  • Moved some options to the new Accessibility page
  • Made some small (as in imperceptible) tweaks to the Options window’s layout
  • Began making improvements to how Shine handles updates
  • A tiny bit more work on extension support. This time, it’s visible work though!

0.6 Beta

So, now let’s talk about the future a little bit, shall we?

0.6 Beta is the next big release for Shine. It feels like it’s been quite a while since the 0.5.3 release, and it honestly kind of stinks because there’s been a lot of improvements made since then. I’m excited to share them with you all.

The biggest thing for 0.6 Beta, though, is of course the Nova system. I’ve talked about it for months now. I’ve done a lot of planning and thinking with the Nova system… and I still haven’t gotten started with it yet.

The biggest part is that this is just my backup machine I’m on here. And frankly, it isn’t fun to develop on this. Developing UI and such for Shine has been a bit of a pain, to be honest; luckily, the Nova system will be more behind-the-scenes than UI, but it still won’t be fun.

Other reasons include that I’ve been really busy and tired from my main job (and so it’s been hard to find the motivation at home to work on the Nova system), and I’ve been more interested/focused on various other features for Shine right now (such as all of the above).

Work on the Nova system will begin shortly though. I’ve mentioned before that I have a fully-laid-out plan and specs for how to set up the Nova system, and so honestly, it’s just a matter of getting it done.

The other two big features for 0.6 Beta are attachment support and iCalendar support. I’ve been debating about simply pushing both of those to a later 0.6.1 release (especially since I don’t feel like reading the iCalendar specs document on this not-made-for-reading TV screen). I’ll share where my thoughts are with this in the near future.

For now, though, beyond implementing the Nova system and improving Shine’s update and install process, there’s not really much anything else needed for 0.6 Beta.

I’m honestly pretty hesitant to give a release date for 0.6 Beta right now, since I feel I need to get further with developing the Nova system to know for sure… but I am certainly aiming to stick to that end-of-October deadline I mentioned previously. Things may change and I may have to push it back a bit, but for now, that’s what I’m aiming for.

I’ll keep you updated, as I do semi-weekly, on how this will come along. For now, though, that is my thoughts.

Until next time,

Jayke

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