Friday, December 17, 2010

Cast Away 2.9.7 released and other news from WBC

Happy Holidays everyone!

Cast Away 2.9.7 has been released. It fixes a problem which could have caused Cast Away to get stuck in testing mode if not properly quit. Please see the version history for details.

We here at WBC have been very busy the last couple of months, but promise a number of updates to follow in the next several weeks.

We've updated all the alternate download links on this site, which had expired due to changes over at Apple's MobileMe. If you encounter other dead links, please report them, as one kind visitor did.

Speaking of changes at MobileMe, as many Mac users know, Apple's making a big push to get people to update to the new MobileMe Calendar system. If things work as you like them now, we'd recommend not being too hasty about this. it involves some major changes under the hood, and you might find compatibility problems.

We are aware that OmniGrowl is not fully compatible with with the new Calendar system. Making it so is a short-term priority, and we're working on it. We appreciate your patience.

There are other changes in the works that will affect OmniGrowl as well. Today it was leaked that Yahoo plans to "sunset" or "merge" a number of its services, included Upcoming. OmniGrowl provides local event notifications using Upcoming. So if it turns out to be true — and it's still too early to tell what will happen with Upcoming — either that feature will disappear or we'll need to find a comparable substitute. Suggestions are very welcome.

As for iDupe, we're working on some issues related to NAS volumes. If you use iDupe and have your music on a NAS volume formatted as FAT32 or NTSF, we'd like to hear from you about testing.

As for ThinkArch, we are waiting on MicroSoft to fix some issues involving Outlook 2011 to begin making ThinkArch compatible with Outlook. As it stands so far, it's simply not possible due to the limitations.

Finally, some of you may be wondering if we have any plans for the Mac App Store. Frankly, we haven't decided at this point. Our model is an old-school shareware model, where software is priced cheaply and people pay when they're happy. That's quite far from what we understand the Mac App Store model will be: focused on impulse buying and quite a controlled user experience. And of course given fees paid to Apple, prices would have to go up quite a lot. We invite your comments.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

OmniGrowl 4.0.6 and WBC iTunes Scripts Collection Updates

OmniGrowl 4.0.6 has just been released. It fixes AMG artist biography notifications.

We are aware of some potential issues with the new MobileMe calendar (introduced within the last few weeks). In order to get them resolved, we have added some extra logging related to calendars in this version. So if you are using the new MobileMe calendar and OmniGrowl and are experiencing any issues, please send your logs to support. (You can access your logs from the help menu, or with cmd-L. Only the first part where it lists your calendars by name and type is needed.)

We've also just released a major update to our WBC iTunes Scripts Collection.

It's the first big update in a while, so it gets a 1.9 version number. Since it doesn't have it's own version history page, here are the main changes made:

  • Added several brand new tagging scripts (Compilationify, Discsettify, Consolidate Artists, and Yearify) to the Grab-Bag.
  • Added a few brand new miscellaneous scripts (including Find Artwork Multi-Search and Reveal All) to the Grab-Bag.
  • Added a couple more switch tagging scripts
  • Updated all scripts to working condition, or designated them as legacy scripts.
  • Removed some hopelessly out of date scripts entirely.
  • Removed iTunes version checking (which caused scripts not to work on iTunes 10+) on some scripts.
  • Various other minor changes to scripts.
  • Updated info documents.
  • Updated links in these info documents.

The new scripts are pretty handy for tagging. We hope you'll try them out.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Another update hat-trick: iDupe, Cast Away, and OmniGrowl

Updates to iDupe, Cast Away, and OmniGrowl have been released.

iDupe 2.8.5 fixes an issue with deep clean mode.

Many performance updates have been made to Cast Away 2.9.6, including fixes for the archive logs and time out issues when iTunes is unresponsive when Cast Away is launched.

OmniGrowl 4.0.5 fixes some bugs, and introduces a much-requested option to customize the iTunes track change full notification descriptions.

Remember that OmniGrowl is still on special for one more day as part of theMacBundles September bundle. Act fast!

The links above are to version history details.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Customer demands refund after realizing he could have stolen iDupe

One of the more difficult things we have to do here at WBC is handle refund requests.

It's a dilemma for us, because most of our products don't require registration codes. We rely on an honor system and value the true spirit of shareware, which originally meant that customers paid when they were happy with the product, and continued to use it.

Often these requests come from Windows users who fail to read the rather obvious Mac-only system requirements (which are stated in red next to an Apple logo, right under the Buy and downloads buttons). It doesn't give us any joy to stick to a consistent policy on refunds in such cases.

We also know that plenty of Mac users abuse this honor system by never paying. But we even hear from people who want a refund when they realize they could have gotten away with not paying!

This exchange on the PayPal dispute system is so telling, and so tragic, that we can't resist posting it, slightly edited, with names changed to protect the "innocent."

From Buyer - John
9/6/2010 23:44 EDT
Have not received software key.
From Seller - Loren
9/7/2010 01:04 EDT
A registration email with the subject "Thanks from WBC" was sent at 11:41 PM EST on 9/6. Check your spam filters, or maybe just wait a little. There is no registration key...
From Buyer - John
9/7/2010 08:30 EDT
Then what exactly are you selling? Either issue a refund or I'll escalate this to a Paypal claim.
From Seller - Loren
9/7/2010 16:55 EDT
We are selling shareware software on an honor system. It is paid software, you indicate you paid by checking a box. I fail to understand your issue.
For details on this
please see this in our FAQ.
[Complete information on our refund policy and approach to shareware is given in our
This was the original principle of shareware before most products started requiring codes like boxed commercial software.
From Buyer - John
9/7/2010 18:15 EDT
My issue is you're not selling a product. It's unclear on your website that you can actually use the software without even paying for it. My ultimatum still remains.
From Seller - Loren
9/8/2010 09:01 EDT
It's perfectly clear that we're selling a product and the link above explains what shareware is. Your argument is basically the same as saying if you buy something at a store and later realize you could have shop-lifted it without getting caught, you should get a refund. I'm sorry but not only is your logic offensive, but your "ultimatum" is meaningless. People like you are the reason most developers have to implement highly restrictive copy protection measures. So much for the principle of an honor system. Sigh.

iDupe 2.8.4 improves iTunes 10 and Tiger+Intel compatibility

iDupe 2.8.4 improves compatibility with iTunes 10 and also with system running Tiger on intel Macs. For details please see the version history.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Pick up OmniGrowl for a Song as part of the September bundle at TheMacBundles

We've long felt that OmniGrowl is one of the most useful products available for the Mac, but that it really needs more exposure. If more people had a chance to try it, they'll wonder how they managed their daily workflow without it.

For that reason, we are partnering with
TheMacBundles, which is including OmniGrowl in its September bundle.

For just $49.95 you can pick up OmniGrowl along with 14 other useful Mac applications at an 85% discount off their total retail values. In other words, these apps are a steal at about 3 bucks each. Or you can "Build Your Own Bundle" and include OmniGrowl in your custom bundle. Strike while the iron is hot!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

OmniGrowl 4.0.4 released

OmniGrowl 4.0.4 has been released. It primarily fixes overly frequent 4info notifications due to 4info site changes. Please see the version history for details.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

iGotta MP3 Collection, back from the dead

Years ago WBC released a FileMaker database to import from iTunes, called iGotta MP3 Collection. Apparently it's been broken for some unknown time since iTunes' export file format changed. That was probably with iTunes 9 or some time after that. Anyway, we've updated iGotta MP3 to work with iTunes 9.2.x at least. It's been tested with iTunes 9.2.1 and FileMaker 11. The only caveat is now when importing (always from the scripts menu) you must manually select Tab-Separated Text File from the show menu. Download it here.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Update Hat-Trick: DevonSync, OmniGrowl, iDupe

Releases for three WBC products are now available.

A long-overdue update for DevonSync (1.4) verifies Snow Leopard compatibility, adds the ability to select particular DEVONthink databases, and introduces other minor features and fixes.

OmniGrowl 4.0.3 improves notifications for network status changes such as dropped connections and fixes MacZot formatting.

iDupe 2.8.3 restores compatibility with Tiger Intel systems.

Friday, May 14, 2010

OmniGrowl 4.0.2 released

OmniGrowl 4.0.2 has just been released. This is mainly a maintenance release.

It fixes a bug that prevented validating the Yahoo Upcoming API key on 10.5 intel machines and possibly other system configurations. (Version 4.0 did not have this bug on most configurations.)

OmniGrowl is now 64-bit compatible. Macs that are 64-bit capable now require OS X 10.5 or higher. However OmniGrowl remains compatible with Tiger on older Macs.

If using GeekTool integration, a redundant geeklet refresh (which generated excess system logging) has been eliminated. This requires GeekTool 3.0 final.

Please see the version history.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

OmniGrowl 4 is here! Hold on to your socks!

After weeks of dedicated work, OmniGrowl 4.0 is finally here! We're really excited about this release and hope you will find out why.

It adds so many new features and enhancements that we can only highlight a few major ones:
  • Local event notifications powered by Yahoo Upcoming
  • OmniGrowl can run optionally as a normal application in the dock with menus
  • Easily show iTunes artwork on the desktop with integrated GeekTool support
  • Integrated music controls to add found artwork to iTunes
  • Revamped concert notifications with images
  • 4info searches can search by set, and each search term can have a custom image
  • More images overall
  • Auto-fill presets for twitter, Netflix, and facebook
Please note that OmniGrowl 4 is a $6 paid update if you bought it before January 1, 2010.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

How OmniGrowl can help you improve your iTunes artwork

Have you ever wanted to improve your iTunes album artwork, but haven't wanted to spend hours (or days depending on the size of your collection) working on it in a dedicated way?

Have you wanted to see album cover artwork while listening to iTunes without disrupting your normal workflow by switching to iTunes or even having the iTunes window take up any space?

Then you may be interested in taking just a little time to set up OmniGrowl and GeekTool 3 and some hot keys for scripts included with OmniGrowl.

OmniGrowl 4 significantly improves the tools that make this possible. Imagine this workflow:

Album artwork is displayed on your desktop. An unobtrusive character in the track info indicates whether the artwork was downloaded from the internet or is already in iTunes. You can glance at it, and if it came from the internet, with a key press you can add that artwork to the album currently playing. You continue your work, enjoying your music, and over time improve the artwork in your collection.

This works especially nicely if you have a secondary monitor, so you can see the album art without losing screen real estate for it.

Although setting this up takes a little time, it's very easy to do. Basically you have to:

• install GeekTool 3
• create 2 "geeklets": an image geeklet called "itunes art" and a shell geeklet called "itunes info"
• enable GeekTool support in OmniGrowl
• optional: install your choice of several hot keys programs and attach a few scripts to hot keys
• run OmniGrowl as usual and enjoy!

Please read OmniGrowl as an iTunes artwork suite for more information.

Note: As OmniGrowl 4 makes this even easier than before, this blog entry has been updated on May 5, 2010 in anticipation of the release of OmnIGrowl 4.0.

Monday, April 12, 2010

OmniGrowl 3.9 released, focusing on iTunes artwork

OmniGrowl 3.9 has been released. Changes focus on iTunes artwork. Better quality images are downloaded from discogs. Additions and improvements to Immediate Actions and plugins and other tweaks make Omnigrowl play even nicer with GeekTool 3. With some set-up, the changes make OmniGrowl a more useful tool to relatively passively set missing artwork in iTunes. In addition, the documentation has been revised and reorganized, and moved entirely online. As always, please see the version history for details.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Update Hat-Trick: iDupe, Omnigrowl, and Cast Away

This weekend, WBC released updates to three of our products:

iDupe has been updated to version 2.8.2. The update focuses on special handling for lossless media files and improved fuzzy matching.

OmniGrowl has been updated to version 3.8.2. This update validated the RSS presets and fixed any outdated ones. It also adds the ability to turn off power status checking.

Cast Away has been updated to version 2.9.5. It focuses mainly on bug fixes and improving troubleshooting.

Please see each of the linked version history pages for more details.

Thursday, February 25, 2010


We will be on holiday from February 26 through March 7. Answers to support emails will likely be delayed during this period. Our apologies for any inconvenience.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

OmniGrowl 3.8 released

OmniGrowl 3.8 focuses on updates to Yahoo Weather, and adds a couple other new features. Please see the version history for details.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

CaliBrate 1.7.4 released

CaliBrate 1.7.4 adds features related to multiple alarms. You can now search for events with at least X alarms, either all alarms or particular types of alarms. When adding alarms, it is now optional whether or not to clear alarms of the same type first. The event drawer now provides better status information on the number of alarms for an event. Please see the version history for details.