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Cathode is a graphically-rich, vintage terminal.

Bask in the glow of over-bright phosphors that flash on and slowly fade away. Customize the screen's curvature, colors, and transparency. Slow the bit-rate to a crawl. Watch the strange dance of beam desyncs and shifting colors. Turn up the noise, jitter, and flicker to add a realistic warmth. Immerse yourself in full-screen mode.

What's New

Version 2.1.3:
  • Fixed a selection bug that was occurring with some multi-monitor setups.


  • OS X 10.7 or later

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Cathode User Discussion

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P=NP Member IconComment+57

Download reads 2.1.2 when title states 2.1.3.

Reply0 replies
Version 2.1.3
El-Duderino Member IconComment+41

One aspect of Cathode that could still definitely be improved is the "Environment".

For starters, there appears to be a bug so any picture you drag to the Environment window is NOT saved/remembered the next time you open Cathode. (In the previous version, no picture other than the default one would appear at all.)

But the main issue is to do with not being able to control the prominence of the background image, the 'reflection'. Basically, if you want to keep the screen fairly dark (transparency very low or zero), as I imagine many would, there is no way to make the "reflection" beneath more conspicuous. Unless you spoil the setting by cranking up the brightness which doesn't look nice. There ought to be some sort of more straightforward opacity control so that the user can have the image's visibility dialled up or down in prominence to taste, independent of "lighting" control.

Also, and I've said it before so why not again, support for the following in future updates would be nice too:

- Special characters (or at least some as would be supported in the regular Terminal)

- Tabs (impure I know) and Vertical Split Panes

- Window appears in the position you last had it (and probably always have it!) and not just that default center

- If there can be reflections, perhaps there could be animated backgrounds (.qtz, .saver files etc)

Reply0 replies
Version 2.0.1
El-Duderino Member IconComment+41

The issue preventing smaller scale has been properly fixed in 1.8.0, which is good of the developer.

Only other suggestions for future updates that come to mind would be:

- tabs and split panes (and even perhaps some sort of slide drawer feature as in TotalTerminal), even though this may be considered by some as alien to the old school aesthetic of it
- a way to have a screensaver / quartz composition of choice faintly in the background
- have Cathode remember the last size and position of the Terminal you were working on rather than just defaulting to centre on every reopen
- also, and I just noticed this, to have option of all effects in Cathode continuing even when another App has focus (at present it freezes these, i.e. flickering, blinking etc, when not in focus)

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Version 1.8.0
El-Duderino Member IconComment+41

Another version - 1.7.0.

I acknowledge the addition of a scale feature. But the minimum font size is still too big. It is still bigger than the font size one would set on a regular terminal. On my favourite font Viti particularly, there is only 10. And Font size = "10" in this case is is nothing like "10" on any other well-known Mac application, like TextEdit or the Finder or anything really. "10" in Cathode is much bigger. Yes you can make the font size HUGE now, with the scale feature, but why in practice would you want that to actually work with... so the same problem remains you can only make Viti, 10 smaller by increasing the border, curvature, which means sacrificing that space and defeating the benefit of the smallness...

It would be so simple just to make the minimum font or scale smaller so don't really get the development difficulty here. Maybe eventually it's going to be addressed, hope so.

Minimum setting of scale still too large to be optimal.

Also, at risk of sounding impure of concept, tabs would be a cool feature.

Reply0 replies
Version 1.7.0
El-Duderino Member IconComment+41

Another update but update still doesn't fix the issue of the only way to get a font smaller is to make border bigger thereby losing the space you would have otherwise gained

Reply0 replies
Version 1.5.0
El-Duderino Member IconComment+41

Its a sweet thing as everyone says, but Dev, if you're reading, can we have *smaller* font sizes in the next update (like as in as small as the regular terminal)- really would make it more handy !

(Also perhaps an easier way to impose a very subtle faux-reflection image.)

Reply1 reply
Version 1.2.0

Just to clarify I mean a smaller size for the Viti font. (Although the other typefaces that are smaller seem to come at the expense of less typing space due to larger borders..)

Hal Itosis Member IconReview+37
Hal Itosis

Visually stunning. Only complaint (so far): it constantly uses around 28% CPU on my 2010 Core i7 MBP. Enough of a load to have the fan audibly ramp up, and the left rear corner get uncomfortably warm for regular (all day) usage.

Can we cut back on the clock somehow?


Reply0 replies
Version 1.2.0
ylluminate Member IconReview+286

This is a really fun toy! I can't say that I'm going to take the plunge to buy it, but it is a great novelty. Not as functional as I would need it to be to replace Terminal or iTerm, but great job guys nonetheless!

Reply0 replies
Version 1.2.0
Ecdltf Member IconReview+24

Great, simply great fun!

Reply0 replies
Version 0.9.4
Dylan-Mc Member IconReview+84

There is nothing like playing a shell game like Nethack or one of the Infocom emulators on an 80's style TTY emulator. GL Terminal was very good, but is now unsupported, and acts kind of wonky at times.

It's wonderful to see this polished application. It has a wonderful set of controls to customize appearance -- all of the retro TTY goodness you desire is available. It's a fine price for a stable piece of software!

Reply0 replies
Version 0.9.4
user icon+84
Version 1.2.0
user icon+0
Version 0.9.9
> 4 6


Current Version (2.x)


Downloads 8,424
Version Downloads 222
Type Utilities / System
License Demo
Date 07 Jun 2014
Platform Intel 64 / OS X
Price $10.00
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