Update on 0.7.6 release

It has been back and forth with the Mac App Store to get Owl published. In short, some of the libraries that Owl uses are not currently compliant with the Mac App Store, so the app cannot currently be published.


For this new version of Owl, we upgraded from using Qt 5.4 to the latest released, Qt 5.8. In this upgrade, Qt replaced one of the modules we were using with another “better” version. For those interested, this change was from using QtWebKit to using QtWebEngine. Unfortunately, QtWebEngine uses private APIs that are blocked with code signed apps that do not allow them function properly in sandbox mode.

What now?

We will be uploading download’able versions of Owl 0.7.6 soon. This way users will still be able to use the new features and give us feedback on the product. As for Mac App Store, we will continue to work with Qt in order to get their modules compliant.

Another option may be to rewrite the portion of Owl that uses QtWebEngine to use something else that would be compliant with the Mac App Store. This option is being explored but as of now no decision has been made.

Image overlay

Another new feature we’ve been working on for the upcoming Owl release is a new way to view images within Owl. The goal of this feature is to make sure that all images are clickable and that when clicked they show up in a transparent overlay. We have made a lot of progress with this feature in the past couple days and here is what it looks like:

You can see here that the image take up the entire app window. Future versions will have “Copy Image Url” and “Save Image As” options in this window.

User avatars

Here is a screenshot of Owl showing user avatars. This is another feature that will be in the next release.

Owl running on CentOS

One of the several things we’ve been working on is getting Owl to work on Linux.After some effort we finally have a working build for CentOS. The UI still needs to be tweaked and updated but the fact that it’s building and running is a significant milestone as we are now able to target all three major desktop platforms!

What is interesting about this is that the UI looks very similar to how the UI looks on Windows. I can see that some of the issues faced on Windows will also need to be addressed on CentOS. For example the dramatically different font sizes in the thread and post panes.

Redesign of thread list

The thread list has been completely refactored.

The post list is next!


November Update

There is still some work to be done on 0.7.6 before it’s ready for release. We completely refactored the HTTP call system to use CURL instead of Qt’s network libraries. This has proven to be significantly faster and also fit in better to the overall architecture of Owl’s design.

We have also release part of the code as an open source project as part of OwlConsole, a terminal program that offers the same functionality as Owl. The source code is viewable here: https://github.com/lulzapps/OwlConsole

We hope to have the new version of Owl released before the end of the year and we appreciate your patience!

Showing some usage of OwlConsole

As we announced last week, we at working on a command like interface for Owl. Here is a small preview of it in action.

GitHub, OwlConsole and Version 0.7.6

With the new version of Owl we will be referring to it as “OwlReader” and we are also working on a new application, OwlConsole. This app is a console application that will enable users to navigate message boards through the command line.

Screen Shot 2016-08-16 at 13.52.09

This screenshot shows some basic functionality such as logging into a board, listing the forums and listing the threads in a forum.

We hope to release OwlReader 0.7.6 and OwlConsole 0.1.0 at the same time. Look for a late September release.

Another update on 0.7.6

The refactoring of our network code has been mostly finished. We have a few minor enhancements and bug fixes top make but the majority of the work is done!

We are also planning to do a significant refactor of our configuration system (Issue #163). We hope to have all of this work wrapped up in July and release a new version!

2,000 Commits

Today we hit a milestone of 2,000 commits into our code repository system. Woo!

The next version of Owl will include significant refactoring not just of the networking subsystem but also of the memory management. Most of these changes should be transparent to the user except for a significant increase in performance.

We are confident in saying that the next version will be released some time in July. Stay tuned for an exact date!