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Bear

A beautiful, flexible writing app for notes and prose

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Matteo Rattotti@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
Hey everyone! We just released Bear beta 2 with a ​*lot*​ of new features and changes based on your feedback. Check out all the details on our blog, and if you haven't signed up to check out Bear yet, you can do that on the homepage: http://www.bear-writer.com/blog/... Thanks again for all your enthusiasm, questions, and help with testing Bear for iOS and Mac!
Would you recommend Bear to a friend?
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Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
Hi everyone! We're Shiny Frog from Italy and we love to make beautiful, useful apps. We created Bear because we wanted a beautiful way to write, easily organize our notes, and publish or share in various ways. This has been a labor of love for nearly two years, and we're releasing the beta today because we'd love to hear what you think! To try Bear, please visit our beta site linked above and enter your email address so we can register you on TestFlight. The Shiny Frog team is myself, Matteo Rattotti, Konstantin Erokhin, and Danilo Bonardi. Comment here with any questions or feedback and we'll do our best to respond!
Cesare D. Forelli@cdf1982 · Indie developer
@matteorattotti Congrats Matteo and all the team for shipping Bear! I've been using the beta and I love your unique approach and design, and sync between devices is lightning fast and absolutely reliable. I wanted to leave Evernote for a while, and Bear is the multi-platform solution I was waiting for!
babygau ヽ(ヅ)ノ@babygau · Indie Developer
@matteorattotti Are you planning to work on Evernote Sync?
Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
@babygau no, but we have an Evernote importer :)
Halyna Zhyrko@galeriks · Growth hacker/Marketer
@matteorattotti Any chance it will be available soon for Android users? :)
Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
@galeriks at the moment we have no plan for Android, but if the app will go really well we might consider.
Matt Aunger@matt_aunger · Community at Pop Products
@matteorattotti Congrats. Super excited to give this a try! Any plans for integrations with blogging platforms? As it's all markdown, I can see a lot of potential for say, a Ghost integration.
Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
@matt_aunger we thought about it, and it could be a future evolution of Bear, but as now we'd like to keep things simple and focus on the core of the app :)
Matt Aunger@matt_aunger · Community at Pop Products
@matteorattotti Makes sense! Don't want too much feature creep in the early stages :)
babygau ヽ(ヅ)ノ@babygau · Indie Developer
@matteorattotti how about an Evernote exporter if I change my mind?
Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
@babygau Bear keep everything in plain text so you opt-out without problem, as for Evernote Bear can export all your note in html and Evernote will happily import them :)
@matteorattotti Congrats on Bear! Looks very nice. Would love to see a web and Windows version for those who want to use it at work with no Macs.
Antonio Rotolo@antorotolo · CEO @ Ludwig
@matteorattotti Congrats guys, very cool and definitely worth a try. I'm really looking forward to it. Plus, perfect timing because I was looking for an alternative to Evernote!
Hans van Gent@jcvangent
@matteorattotti @babygau At a first glance it looks really beautiful, although I'm addicted to my Evernote ;-) There are alternatives to Evernote like Alternote, which give a more beautiful experience but still keep Evernote as the core for all its data. Would be really interesting to have that feature set in this as well, just so I can store everything in the same place I've been storing it for years and years. I can understand that you're keeping the focus right now, but is this something you won't consider somewhere in the future as well? On a different "note" ;-) Any info about pricing model?
monirom@monirom
@jcvangent @matteorattotti @babygau me too. when you have 5,000+ notes migrating would be a pain. I use Evernote as a storage option for my Icon/UI kits too. Preview Images of contents and then an embedded zip file within the note. Does Bear support zip files? Also pricing would be helpful.
@matteorattotti @galeriks +1 for Android! i just signed up for the beta. I use Evernote a lot and they just haven't evolved. Looks like you guys are doing some cool stuff.
babygau ヽ(ヅ)ノ@babygau · Indie Developer
@matteorattotti One more question. I'm wondering if you support Vim/Emacs keybinding while editing?
Damion Alexander@nostradamion
@matteorattotti Any idea when the beta will be available?
Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
@nostradamion we'll start sending the first batch in a few hours :)
Tigran Hakobyan@tigranhakobian · Entrepreneur, Co-founder/CMO @ inapptics
@matteorattotti Congrats on being featured on PH! It's interesting to know which mobile analytics tool do you use or planning to use to track your app usage? I'd suggest trying http://inapptics.com/ to see how people actually use your app. Have a look, I bet you'll like it ;)
Jonathan Simcoe@jdsimcoe · Designer. Jesus lover. Family man.
@matteorattotti How can we ensure that Bear won't decay like some of your others app (e.g. Pixa)? I'm super jazzed about Bear but I want to make sure you guys plan on supporting it for the long haul.
J. Alexander Curtis@_jacurtis · Co-Founder, Yagi Telecom
I have to admit I sort of rolled my eyes when I saw "another notetaking app" on product hunt. But after giving it a look I have to admit now that i am really excited to try it out. It might just be the app I have been looking for. Currently I am using Evernote, but it is by no means an ideal solution. I like that its cross platform and integrates with everything. However the rest of it, to me at least, is a terrible experience. Evernote feels clunky at times for such a basic thing, and organization tools are available (tags, folders, etc) but the UI doesn't implement them very well. They have a good search which is what I have found that I need to rely on most often when searching for a note. I would love to turn this upside down and find something that works. I really like the idea of markdown and I love the design and simplicity with how it appears to be implimented. Last thought: The variation of Markdown you are using is slightly concerning. Just because it strays from the norm. For example in traditional markdown you would add an asterix around *italics* and double asterix around **bold**. However in your implementation a single Asterix will cause bold and not italics, which is confusing for someone used to traditional markdown. Also in traditional markdown a single underscore would also make text italics while in your version it will make it underlined. I am not sure if this is a problem or not. I would have to try the app. While I will be honest that if we were redo-ing the markdown spec today I would give you two thumbs up for your version (it is more intuitive) but my concern is that I will have to remember that I am using the Bear Markdown which is different than traditional markdown. I fear it will cause me to make errors in Bear or errors in other markdown apps that i use because I have to consciously remember which version I am using and remember two syntaxes. While the traditional markdown is seemingly inferior to your version of markdown, I would still lean towards using it because it is consistent across other markdown apps. Maybe you can have an option in settings that would allow you to switch between the two version. I am excited to try the beta and maybe after trying it for a while I will realize that this markdown issue isn't a problem. I just bring it up as an initial concern. Best of luck with the release and the beta!
Andrew Wooldridge@triptych · WebDev
@_jacurtis I agree - hopefully you offer configuration options to allow folks to use standard markdown as well.
Belle Beth Cooper@bellebcooper · Co-founder, exist.io
@_jacurtis I've definitely noticed this when using the beta. I use Markdown constantly, for everything, so I'm a lot slower at doing any markup in Bear because I have to remember the different syntax.
Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
@_jacurtis we are aware of the concerns about the Markdown variations, we discussed a lot about this, and we still have doubts. But this is the first public beta, things can be changed :) We really want a lot of feedback about our variations, and if they are a problem we'll change them (we'll try to not be stubborn about this). I really like the @_jacurtis comment, because it highlight the problem, but it keep the door open to the new possibilities, I'm pretty sure that with this mindset we can make something beautiful <3 Thanks again for all the support!
Wagner Bonfiglio@lamagrabr · CTO, Já Entendi
Windows/Android versions please, I really need to use your great app!
Simon Keane@keanetweets · Product Designer, Starling Bank
Any ETA on the beta launch? 😄
Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
@keanetweets a day or two, we're 99% ready :)
Simon Keane@keanetweets · Product Designer, Starling Bank
@matteorattotti Awesome, looking forward to trying it out! :)
Ernie Smith@shortformernie · Editor, Tedium; journalist
Hey, why the nonstandardized implementation of Markdown? The bold and italics in particular is not how that tends to be used in most apps.
Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
@shortformernie Hey! The standard Markdown has many limitations and in particular bold and italic are non-intuitive/mnemonic, we tried to come up with a variant that's more user friendly and that allows us to implement new features with ease. However, we'll listen to our users feedback and we'll try to take the best direction :)
Ernie Smith@shortformernie · Editor, Tedium; journalist
@matteorattotti For me, it's a literal "I won't use it" thing. I worry it would introduce a compatibility issue with the other Markdown files I use and messes with the muscle memory. I wouldn't be able to copy and paste my words from this into Ghost, for example. New ideas are welcome to the Markdown spec (the approach certainly isn't terrible), but I think you should put this decision in the hands of users. At this juncture, it's almost like messing with the HTML standard. Not trying to be a wet blanket here, but that immediately stood out to me as a potential problem.
Seb Jachec@iamsebj · Studying, coding, designing, gaming.
@matteorattotti @shortformernie Seems like this just makes notes partially incompatible if you export them elsewhere. Having to spend time going through and changing bold and italics to the syntax that's accepted on most sites and in most apps isn't fun. Almost goes against the "no lock-in" data storage philosophy too.
Matteo Rattotti
Maker
@matteorattotti · Shiny Frog
@iamsebj @shortformernie We have a markdown importer/exporter, so you don't need to do this by hand. I get that's not ideal and we might change direction at some point, but as now we really want to try this approach. We don't want to exclude the Markdown users, but we want to improve everyone else experience. The public beta is made to highlight this kind of problems, we'll change course if our users feel that this is a big mistake :)
Andrew Wooldridge@triptych · WebDev
@matteorattotti @shortformernie folks are learning markdown so they can use it across apps. if you are going to offer a non-standard markdown, please at least have an option for folks to use the standard instead. As they've already gotten that habit :)
Ernie Smith@shortformernie · Editor, Tedium; journalist
@triptych @matteorattotti I think that nails my concern here. I think if you offer users the option—so it can be turned on or ignored at will—you'll make everyone happier. But take your time and see how usage shakes out. Cheers!
@shortformernie @triptych @matteorattotti I definitely agree with this. Non-standard markdown would be a serious mood killer and a strong reason to stick with Ulysses.