Monday, March 29, 2010
In the past few days, I've heard of a two reMail-like apps getting approved on the App Store: OneMail and fwdMail. Both are $0.99 (reMail used to be free, but you had to spend $4.98 via in-app purchases for the functionality that's in the open source release).
fwdMail ($0.99) is most like reMail: While some artwork has been changed, it looks like the code wasn't.
OneMail ($0.99 intro pricing) seems to have put in a lot more work: reMail was completely re-themed, and the navigation flow was cleaned up. There are still some minor issued with the new navbar on my iPhone 3G, but overall OneMail is nice. In particular, the developer added landscape viewing of emails, which was a much-requested feature.
If you're a developer that's doing something interesting with reMail, please reach out to me and let me know.
This is not an endorsement of OneMail or fwdMail by myself or my employer, just some information for my readers.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
If you see someone every day, you'll see how those ideas are generated step by step. It's easier to look insightful in intervals.
-- Thanks to Immad for pointing this out
Friday, March 19, 2010
One of the best talks was by Clay Shirky, who I have a huge braincrush on.
His best point was that abundance breaks more things than scarcity. Humans have been trained for tens of thousands of years to deal with scarcity: We put on a price on scarce items, we manage their distribution, and if they're necessary for life or safety, we've established political systems to make sure they're provided.
But now we're overwhelmed. Yes, atoms are getting cheaper and we all own much more stuff than we used to. But the real flood comes in bits and bytes. Our brains were just not made to handle all of it. I wonder if humans will evolve first, or technologies to manage the overload.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Friday, March 05, 2010
Last month, we announced reMail's acquisition by Google. Since we'll be focusing on other projects at Google, we also decided to remove reMail from the App Store. Existing users were able to keep using it because reMail is a client-only application. Our announcement caused a lot of interest in reMail's product, and we looked at a number of options to make it available in some form. We decided that the best option was to open source the code, which is now available on Google Code as remail-iphone under the Apache 2.0 License.
As someone who is passionate about mobile email, my hope is that developers interested in making email-related apps can use reMail code as a starting point. Part of the reason email apps are hard is because you have to pay the tax of figuring out how to download email via IMAP, parse MIME messages, handle attachments, and store data. reMail has already solved these problems. If you have a great mobile email idea, I hope you will find reMail's source code helpful in your quest.
I put some effort into documenting the source code so you can get started on your ideas quickly. If you like reMail and want to improve it, I have also listed some potential projects with implementation tips. Most of these projects are features that users have requested in the past. I encourage you to contribute improvements back to the project. I've also created the group remail-iphone on Google Groups, which is a great place to ask questions. Best of luck with your projects!
As someone who is passionate about mobile email, my hope is that developers interested in making email-related apps can use reMail code as a starting point. Good luck with your projects!
Google Code: remail-iphone