Once upon a time, in a social network far, far, away, there was this really cool Mac app developer. He (she, it, they) created Tweetie for Mac.
It quickly spread throughout the land as the favored way to use Twitter. The Twitter gods so loved the Tweetie for Mac developer that they brought him (he, she, it) back to Twitterland. Tweetie is now Twitter 2 for Mac and it sucks.
Pardon My French, Mi Amigo!
Alright, I get it. Nothing improves without change. Tweetie, easily the most beloved Twitter app for Mac users (in the Kingdom of Kayhill, for sure), has changed. Twitter is infested with the iOS flu of 2010. Long live Tweetie for Mac. We hardly knew ye.
A bunch of new features does not an improvement make, Twitter gods!
Change is not necessarily improvement, you know?
Does any productive member of society or member of a lame social network without a business model really, truly, deeply need a live, streaming feed of tweets? Really?
Was there a vote on that? How about a recount? Alright, there’s support for lists, I’ll give you that one. But retweets are in my tweet work flow. I’m not following that person. Make them go away. They’re in my stream. Did the Twitter for Mac developers forget that developing iPhone apps on the Mac doesn’t mean that a Mac app has to look just like an iPhone app?
Interface, Easter Egg, And Window Swooshes
Honestly, I thought I downloaded a broken Twitter app. The interface looked broken. It felt broken. It worked broken. Therefore, I believed the duck to be broken. Where’s the title bar to drag it around the screen?
Seriously. Where’s the freakin’ title bar. Some designer is experimenting with my eyes and sense of Mac user interface appropriateness. Where’s the Red, Yellow, Green buttons? Who turned out their lights? Why does Twitter for Mac behave like Twitter for iOS?
What are those funky little blue lights beside my Twitter avatars? It’s like a little Christmas tree light bulb fell into the Twilight Zone, or was partially covered by a mudslide. I can see it. But it’s somewhere else. Squint closely and you can see the image of Rod Serling.
A New Age Begins
Are we entering the new age of Mac app design where standards and guidelines don’t apply? Have we begun the era of anything goes (so long as it’s animated)?
Didn’t animation die with Walt Disney? Why does everything I click have to be animated, swooshing from here to there, left and right, and back again. I don’t need to be entertained. I’m not an iCarly groupie. I don’t need to be captivated by swooshing motions like my kids are hypnotized by Sponge Bob Square Pants and his wet friends (although I find that to be handy).
If you’re going to animate, give me animation sounds, too. Then, let me turn them off, so I can feel as if I’ve gained some sense of control over all these wacky Picasso-meets-iOS design changes.
Hey, I used to be able to retweet a tweet from one Twitter account to another with simple right click. Where’s that now? Some of us have a public Twitter account, a business Twitter account, and a private Twitter account.**
What’s the deal with the Easter Egg for MacHeist bundle buyers? It’s not like they should be rewarded for buying Tweetie on the cheap. I paid full price. What do I get? A growing pile of complex features that suck away my time faster than 30-minutes of Sarah Palin’s Alaska, and a colorless, lifeless, marble icon in the Dock. And even it doesn’t do anything. Reanimate it already.
One Good Thing. Alright, Maybe Two
OK, it’s not all bad, despite the lack of usable-by-human-tweeter functionality. No more clicking to get a URL shortened? I like that. It could grow on me. Can I choose the service? Lists are good. Did I mention that?
Oh, and those keyboard commands? Nice touch. One right keyboard arrow and the tweeted link hits a page in Safari. That’s good. The right-click stuff is handy, too. It’s just not always the right stuff.
**Alright, I see it now. Select retweet, then click the Twitter avatar (photo, icon, et al) in the floating tweet window and get the multiple Twitter accounts from which to retweet. Whose idea was it to put it over there?
Maybe Twitter for Mac could be allowed to stay in the yard and play for awhile. And it was a good (and free) way to try out the Mac App Store. But I’m keeping Tweetie around for awhile because someone has upset my experienced and well honed sense of Mac design appropriateness, all in the name of progress (or, as the result of a reaction to some medication).