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Popular writing app Ulysses received its eighteenth major update today, adding some notable new features and bringing full mouse and trackpad support on iPadOS.

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As mentioned, version 19 of Ulysses adds native support for Apple's new iPad mouse and trackpad features, which were announced on March 24 as part of iPadOS 13.4.

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What that means in practice is that the round cursor changes shape or shifts out the way as it moves across different interactive elements in the Ulysses interface. The cursor will also turn into an "I-beam" over text for the purpose of editing.

Meanwhile, Ulysses users now have the ability to indicate selected texts or notes as "material," or things they've written or collected in the app that aren't meant to be part of a final text.

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Thanks to a visual marker, material "sheets," as they're called in the Ulysses terminology, are easy to recognize. By default, content marked as material is excluded from export and statistics.

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In Ulysses 19, the developers have also improved the compatibility of Ulysses keywords in Markdown files. They can now be written out at the end of a text and marked with a hash. This allows Markdown editors such as Bear Notes or iA Writer to interpret them as keywords as well. Conversely, Ulysses will now recognize keywords in Markdown files and make them usable in the app.

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Elsewhere on iPad and iPhone, Ulysses 19 adds the ability to embed external folders from locations in the Files app, such as cloud storage providers or Git clients, and edit the contained files with Ulysses. Users also now have the option to export single backups of their text libraries and import them back into Ulysses.

Other additions and improvements in this version include new search filter criteria such as "has goal," "has note attachment" or "is material," a new editor font called SF Mono, improved initial download performance when syncing with Dropbox, and a new toilet paper group icon.

Coinciding with the release of Ulysses 19, the developers are set to open a beta program for Ulysses 20. "We're working on a few awesome new features that need thorough testing, at best with a large number of participants," said Marcus Fehn, Ulysses' creative head of development.
Ulysses can be downloaded for free on the App Store and the Mac App Store, with version 19 rolling out to existing users today. After a 14-day trial period, a subscription is required to unlock the app on all devices. A monthly subscription costs $4.99, while a yearly subscription is $39.99.

Students can use Ulysses at a discounted price of $11.99 per six months. The discount is granted from within the app. Ulysses is also included in Setapp, the subscription-based service for Mac applications created by MacPaw.

Article Link: Ulysses 19 Brings Material Sheets, Mouse Support on iPad, Keywords in Markdown Files, and More
 
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sfwalter

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Jan 6, 2004
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I am still waiting for table support. From the list on their beta page it doesn’t sound like it’s coming anytime soon.
 
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phenste

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Sep 16, 2012
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I am still waiting for table support. From the list on their beta page it doesn’t sound like it’s coming anytime soon.
I’ve always heard great things about this app but never used it…does it really not support tables?
(Rhetorical q, I know. That’s just wild to me.)
 
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sfwalter

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Jan 6, 2004
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I’ve always heard great things about this app but never used it…does it really not support tables?
(Rhetorical q, I know. That’s just wild to me.)

Nope. Its great otherwise. I also use it to store code snippets. Alot of the Markdown based editors don't support tables. They have said they need to rewrite their rendering engine to support tables. They've been talking about table support for quite awhile now
 
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MasterHowl

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Oct 3, 2010
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Ulysses is perhaps my favourite non-Apple app. Both their macOS version and iOS/iPadOS versions are fantastic and seamlessly integrate. It feels like an "Apple app" if that makes sense?
Back in January I finished writing a 135k word manuscript in Ulysses (my first book). It's due to be published and available to buy in August. So exciting. Ulysses made the writing process a total joy. Their app is a delight to use.
 
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travelsheep

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May 30, 2013
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The people who pay the subscription will be delighted!

I, on the other side, I'm still happy with my one-time purchase of the 2.8.2. version. I don't have to continue to spend money and yet I still can read and edit my old files in Ulysses, and create new ones too! Go figure ;-)
 
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naturalstar

macrumors demi-goddess
Mar 9, 2012
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Ha. Coincidentally, I’ve just rediscovered Ulysses. Unfortunately when I restored my purchase, it gave me the subscription version - everything is a subscription now - so I need to see if it’s worth it, but it is highly praised by writers and looks like it will give me helpful features.
 
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anakin44011

macrumors newbie
Jan 6, 2004
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The people who pay the subscription will be delighted!

I, on the other side, I'm still happy with my one-time purchase of the 2.8.2. version. I don't have to continue to spend money and yet I still can read and edit my old files in Ulysses, and create new ones too! Go figure ;-)

The people who pay for subscriptions are delighted to know that this software is not only still being developed, but will likely still exist five or 10 years from now rather than becoming another one of the many promising applications that got abandoned when compatibility with various operating system updates broke their code.

$40/year for a piece of software that I use and rely upon every day? Hell yes!

YMWV
 
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Janichsan

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Oct 23, 2006
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Back in January I finished writing a 135k word manuscript in Ulysses (my first book). It's due to be published and available to buy in August. So exciting. Ulysses made the writing process a total joy. Their app is a delight to use.
Now you have to name its title as well and tell us where to get it. 😜
 
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MacHiavelli

macrumors 65816
May 17, 2007
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new york
The people who pay for subscriptions are delighted to know that this software is not only still being developed, but will likely still exist five or 10 years from now rather than becoming another one of the many promising applications that got abandoned when compatibility with various operating system updates broke their code.

$40/year for a piece of software that I use and rely upon every day? Hell yes!

YMWV

Ulysses makes less than $30,000 per month. It then has overheads to pay: staff, tax, insurance, hardware, software, etc.

$30,000 per month is fine for one guy sitting in his boxers at home and making a little app for fun. It isn't enough for a meaningful long-term business.

So will your $40 per year mean that Ulysses will still be around in 10 years? 5 years even? Probably not, but you can use it while it lasts.
 
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MasterHowl

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Oct 3, 2010
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Ulysses makes less than $30,000 per month. It then has overheads to pay: staff, tax, insurance, hardware, software, etc.

$30,000 per month is fine for one guy sitting in his boxers at home and making a little app for fun. It isn't enough for a meaningful long-term business.

So will your $40 per month mean that Ulysses will still be around in 10 years? Probably not, but you can use it while it lasts.
Genuine question (not trying to be snarky) – do you have a source for that figure?
 
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artfossil

macrumors 68000
Oct 5, 2015
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You had me until I read subscription. This isn't f Office or Photoshop. Won't pay $5 every month. Sorry.
No need to be sorry if you have no need for Ulysses. :)

I use Office a couple of times a month at most. Same with Photoshop as both have better alternatives for me.

I use Ulysses every day and can't imagine my creative life without it. I pay $2.50 a month (29.99 a year). It's a bargain for an elegant and powerful app that's a joy to use, has great support, and is continually getting better.
 
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The Cappy

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Nov 9, 2015
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Dunwich Fish Market
Ha. Coincidentally, I’ve just rediscovered Ulysses. Unfortunately when I restored my purchase, it gave me the subscription version - everything is a subscription now - so I need to see if it’s worth it, but it is highly praised by writers and looks like it will give me helpful features.
You can still download the old version, I think.
 
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SgtPepper12

macrumors 6502a
Feb 1, 2011
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Germany
You had me until I read subscription. This isn't f Office or Photoshop. Won't pay $5 every month. Sorry.
Agreed. It's an awfully shameless price too. Good for the developers that some people have zero sense of when they are being ripped off. This is a clear case of that.
 
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The Cappy

macrumors 6502
Nov 9, 2015
443
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Dunwich Fish Market
You had me until I read subscription. This isn't f Office or Photoshop. Won't pay $5 every month. Sorry.
Why exactly is Office or Photoshop magically worth a subscription but Ulysses isn't? Office has competitors that are pretty decent and do mostly the same, Photoshop has absolutely outstanding competitors. Ulysses is a terrific app if you want to write. If you're actually using it, it's worth it. And $40 a year is a lot cheaper than Microsoft's $69 or $99 a year.
[automerge]1588093108[/automerge]
Agreed. It's an awfully shameless price too. Good for the developers that some people have zero sense of when they are being ripped off. This is a clear case of that.
Because...? Because for a 1-time payment, the developers are supposed to keep working for free, forever? This nonsense is the reason why we can't get pro-level apps on the App Store. It's not like Ulysses has stagnated. They're continuing to develop it. You have absolutely no idea what the user base is, and probably don't have a grown-up's knowledge of paying overhead of an office, then going home and paying rent for a home and trying to support a family. I seriously doubt that the devs are living in opulence over my paltry subscription fee.
 
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JediStarWars

macrumors regular
Oct 26, 2015
102
299
Long time Ulysses user. It's a great app.

I've got to say though, subscription models suck. I would happily pay $49 or $99 for a lifetime, one-time license (even if it's the same version and does not include future updates as long as the version I have continues to work...) because people cannot progress financially in life if everything becomes a subscription model.

Because of this, I have since migrated back to Apple Notes. It's surprisingly good and accomplishes everything I need a writing and document repository app to do. The fact that it's reliable, consistent, and cross-platform across the Mac OS/iOS platforms makes it a no-brainer when switching. You can even export everything from Ulysses to Notes. It's a slow, manual process, but worth sucking up as a one time hit if you're committed to switching.

I've used Ulysses, Bear, and everything in-between. The Apple Notes app is severely under appreciated.
 
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CarlJ

macrumors 603
Feb 23, 2004
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San Diego, CA, USA
Agreed. It's an awfully shameless price too. Good for the developers that some people have zero sense of when they are being ripped off. This is a clear case of that.
Who is being ripped off? Ulysses is a seriously nice app for writing lengthy manuscripts. And if you're using it for that, day-in and day-out, $5/mo is a quite reasonable price.

There seem to be a lot of people these days who feel entitled to high quality software for pennies, but wouldn't be willing to do their job for pennies an hour. Really good software takes a lot of time and effort (and skill) to write and to maintain and update. If the app isn't for you, fine, but when you start throwing around phrases like "awfully shameless" and "ripped off", and asserting that anyone who buys it has zero sense, you sound pretty ignorant and self-entitled. I read your comment as a condemnation of you, not of the developers or their customers.

What subscriptions have done, unfortunately, is cause apps to cast off a lot of casual users. Something like Ulysses is good enough and interesting enough for me to pay $20 or so, upfront, in order to experiment with (in fact, I did just that, years ago), but not useful enough to me to pay $5/mo every month going forward. I recognize that it's very well written and complex software, and worth the price if you really need what it does. Unfortunately, I don't need it that much.
 
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naturalstar

macrumors demi-goddess
Mar 9, 2012
2,054
2,768
You can still download the old version, I think.

I may look into it, but since it’s been so long, I’m looking at other apps as well. I remember when I thought Scrivener was too much, but at least it’s a one time payment, for now, anyway.
 
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