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Writers' Talk With Guest Wil Shipley
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wilshipleyatomni: One problem with generating PDF from pages is most pages don't separate out nicely into printer-sized pages.



wilshipleyatomni: People make their pages 22" high and 8" wide, and so full of tables that there's no algorithm in the world that could do intelligent page breaks.

OReillyMac: That's true from my experience too ... but I still like the functionality.

alanosx: One major step forward using pdf...

alanosx: is that in order to make text appear attractive...

alanosx: we always had to use gif based text...which of course limited our file sizes...and restricted us...

alanosx: by putting more burden on the PC and less on downloads...

alanosx: we get beautiful text that can reflect what we want to get across.

alanosx: now we don't have to trade-off quality for size, scaling down isn't necessary anymore.

wilshipleyatomni: Yes, we're having to re-educate even our own web people here. Since most of our customers are on OS X, and

wilshipleyatomni: we have a TON of built-in, gorgeous fonts on OS X, we don't really need to make the big GIF headers any more.

wilshipleyatomni: Which is great not only from a load-time point of view, but also being able to quickly change the content on your site.

OReillyMac: I'll tell you though ... when people look at pages on my OmniWeb browser, they're impressed. And the typography has a lot to do with that.

alanosx: I agree.

alanosx: I was astonished.

OReillyMac: And the PDFs look great too, even with the funky breaks

wilshipleyatomni: That's awesome to hear!

alanosx: You know what shocked me the most with OMNIWEB?

wilshipleyatomni: But IE is going to catch up to this in a couple of releases.

wilshipleyatomni: Well, assuming they don't all quit and go home. :)

OReillyMac: That leads to my next question ...

alanosx: Is that your interface design is so professional...I was so impressed.

wilshipleyatomni: (shock?)

wilshipleyatomni: Thanks! I hired Rick Roe after seeing his work on the web... he runs icons.cx.

OReillyMac: Before I ask my next question, I have to agree with Alan here about the interface design.

alanosx: It looks and feels like a million dollar program.

wilshipleyatomni: He's a nut, in the best way. When I found him he was making replacement icons for IE and Adobe Photoshop and other apps, just for fun.

wilshipleyatomni: And they looked 10x better!

wilshipleyatomni: I wrote him the same day and said, "Come work for me."

wilshipleyatomni: I honestly think he's the best UI and icon guy in the business right now.

OReillyMac: Seems to me there's a window for "new" developer teams that can get apps out the door in Cocoa. Do you think you can be the "other" browser?

wilshipleyatomni: I think we already are the "other" browser.

OReillyMac: And make money?

wilshipleyatomni: We distribute OmniWeb through three different methods, two of which we can't track.

wilshipleyatomni: But the one we can, we had about 150,000 downloads of the RC1 release.

wilshipleyatomni: In a couple of weeks.

OReillyMac: RC1?

wilshipleyatomni: (Release candidate 1)

OReillyMac: Ah!

wilshipleyatomni: That's not including the people who went to Apple's site and saw us on the downloads page -- we can't track those.

wilshipleyatomni: Or the people who grabbed it off their iDisk.

wilshipleyatomni: So, I think we have about 300,000 people actively using OmniWeb right now.

wilshipleyatomni: This is on an OS that's sold maybe 500,000 copies.

wilshipleyatomni: That is AWESOME market penetration.

OReillyMac: Alan, what do you think about this?

alanosx: Well...what I think is....that Mac users have high standards...

alanosx: and that people are always looking for the MS alternative...and...

alanosx: people always recognize quality...for example...

alanosx: if you released your browser...and it looked like you invested a weekend of time and $100 in materials...people...especially mac people...

alanosx: will turn their heads...but...

alanosx: you've made a piece of software that looks better and in many respects works better than a company...

alanosx: that has invested perhaps billions to push their product...and you've already begun to catch on.

alanosx: mostly by word of mouth.

alanosx: that says a lot.

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