First thing I noticed was that it was fairly slow at updating the info (admittedly though, I've got a little under 2000 friends) and so at first I thought, because it was a demo, all it listed was the names and profile links of people on my friends list. Then I noticed the little "1 of xx selected" at
the bottom, which was slowly going up.
Suggestion #1 - Make some kind of a universal status bar to let you know it's doing SOMETHING and/or how close to complete it is. Even just the standard OS X spinny thing at the top of the window or something would be sufficient.
After running for about 15 minutes, it has only provided the info and photos for about 1/3 of my listed friends. The rest are simply filled with "Not Found" tags. That seems pretty slow. Of course it is a fair amount of data to go through, and given that it saves it locally I suppose it should only be a major one time update. It was about this point that I figured out there was a Tasks and Connections set of windows to let you know what it was doing. Finally! Some status bars to let me know it's doing SOMETHING.
Suggestion #2: Given the fact that the GUI has some great similarities to Apps like iPhoto, it might make more sense to add toolbar buttons at the bottom and have these two windows pop up in the bottom left corner a la the Calendar, Info and Keywords buttons in iPhoto.
I shut down and restart the program to see if it would auto update and it didn't. After a minute or so of waiting to see if anything would happen, I hit the home button and after a few seconds it started synchronizing again.
Suggestion #3 (and 3b): If not outright making it auto sync on startup, at least put the option under the Preferences pane. The Home button itself seems to be poorly named. Generally (at least as far as I'm concerned) it's related to web browsers, and returning you to your starting position. Since there's only one view (as far as I can tell) there isn't a new view to return to, or a real starting position as such. Maybe rename it the Log In or Update button so it makes more sense to first time users.
The overall look and feel of the program is really nice (for people who like iApps) with a few minor exceptions.
1. the group creation method is pretty poor. Once again it would benefit from options similar to iPhoto, iTunes, etc. ie. Make a File > New Group option. Had I not read about it on the website I wouldn't have even known it was possible to create groups. To be honest, though the filters are pretty good to begin with, custom groups does a lot to bump up the functionality and value of this program.
2. Listing the raw URL to Show Profile, Show Friends, Send Message, etc. is pretty ugly for an otherwise attractive application. And further is simply reinforces the idea that this is nothing more than a fancy local GUI for MySpace. Maybe create a button, or link the title text itself.
Overall, while it has some great features for browsing/organizing large friends lists, such as the filters and groups, and it's also very convenient to be able to send messages and update your friends requests from one window, this program didn't really blow me away with what it could do. That combined with the fact that everything you can do through the program you can also do for free from the MySpace website (in, I would estimate, about twice the time) and especially the fact that a heck of a lot of programs designed with similar ideas (such as local LiveJournal updating clients) are freeware, makes a $30 price tag a bit steep for me. Granted convenience stores can double their markup based on the convenience factor, but in my opinion double the markup on "free" is closer to $10 without the benefit of some serious added features. (such as cross site support, maybe update friendster, tardcore, myspace and more all in one?) As donationware I'd love this program, as is I'll stick to the old fashioned way of being a trendy nerd.
Incidentally, I've left the program and this review open for about half an hour now and it's STILL got about 800 friends to update on my list. For those with 10 000 page friends lists (who would most benefit from a program like this) you're probably looking at a day long initial setup process!