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Macatak's Posts
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Macatak commented on 23 Oct 2013
I echo the negative sentiments here regarding Parallels' upgrade policy and shafting loyal users. Greedy is an understatement.

Then again, so is VMware Fusion.
[Version 9.0.23136]


Macatak reviewed on 15 Oct 2012
Has potential. Amazing range of presets.
Some observations (if developers read these things):
- when app first launches and you choose an image, it opens image with the presets selector, with no obvious way to just get to the plain image and then work with it
- if you close that window and open a subsequent image, it opens to an editing space; this is my expected behaviour; however, opens half-way off the screen! need to reposition window
- then you can add filters
- this initial launch behaviour can be modified in Preferences, to open a new blank project by default and show the Library; to me, this should be the default behaviour, but obviously the developers do not, so fine, but at least make it clear, perhaps with a button at the top, how to open the plain photo in a workspace
- when viewing the Library, it is not clear how to apply the effects; for example, when applying a frame design, you'd think double-clicking would add the texture, wood let's say, but it does not; you have to drag the texture on to the palette, but holy cow, the Library is positioned over top of that filter dialog, so you have to move it; I am working on a MacBook Pro, so clearly the screen real estate is a factor, but I don't like that design; make the toolbars/palettes/libraries/presets/whatever all snap as docked screens on the side or bottom by default, resizing the centre image workspace, so that then they can be undocked as a user chooses, so as to clearly present to the user the options available
- look at apps such as opens with a default set of toolbars and palettes (floating mind you, but still visible!), that are easily customisable, but right from the get-go you have access to the core functions of the app; that's the paradigm folks are used to, IMHO
- some windows do not focus properly; oddly, the About window shows up behind the Library; I am not a programmer, but that surely is not how something like that should work
- if you have a workspace open and want to see Presets, you have to use a keyboard shortcut or choose a menu option; once the Presets screen opens, there is no (obvious) way to get back to the other screen
- right now, the app is a bit haphazard in its design layout, with odd window behaviours and some aspects not terribly intuitive
- you could avoid much of this by making the first Preset as 'none' or something suitable
- this is just my opinion!
- at version 6, I am somewhat surprised these elements still exist
- I see some of these issues, interestingly, are addressed in the Neatberry online FAQ; my view is if the issue has to be addressed in an FAQ, it needs to be changed in the app as a default behaviour, generally, or that function revisited and revised to make it more intuitive
- add comprehensive watermarking tools and PhotoStyler has the potential to be the ultimate styler app
[Version 6.5.1]

Macatak commented on 13 Oct 2012
Not ready for prime time. Has potential though. Do like that it supports PSD. And tons of decent templates.
Biggest issues:
- no ability to save work-in-progress, including reference to assets, for resuming task later, so it's a one-time only effort to create a collage; that is a total deal-breaker and I will not be using Choco until it addresses this glaring omission
- no obvious ability to 'shake' up a collage to automatically fit new frames, or to randomise frames, as though throwing down images and see where they land
- should be able to point to a folder of images and have them automatically fill the frames in a random manner, then be able to swap them around
I keep attempting to find Mac replacements for Windows apps, as I am a tweener currently moving from Windows to Mac, and wish Mac developers would look to the established Windows apps that do things such as this extremely well. I suggest you look at LumaPix FotoFusion. They have it right. Most unfortunately they don't, as yet, have a Mac version (though they have attempted it with a Wine-like deployment, which absolutely sucks).
So, for now, Choco (not sure what the significance is of the name, but hardly intuitive for the task it does, so perhaps a re-think on that too) is not up to par. It's at version 1, so hopefully the developers are keen to make it the best collage app around, and listen.
So long for now. I'll get my chocolate (collage) fix elsewhere for now.
Thank you. All the best...
[Version 1.0]

1 Reply


Macatak replied on 20 Sep 2013
Revisited Choco 2.1. A few improvements. When I closed the app without saving the current collage, Choco did not ask if I wanted to save the creation. Seems an odd behaviour.

Developer: on the opening splash screen, "it's features" should be spelled "its". As well, spread the "world" or spread the "word"?
Macatak commented on 08 Oct 2012
Hugely overpriced, rather underwhelmed. Looking for a Mac replacement for CorelDRAW. EazyDraw is just a 'cheezy' wannabe knock-off, with hard-to-take-seriously candyland-looking icons. More importantly it failed some simple, basic, but critical tests for text and object manipulation, and I abandoned EazyDraw within minutes as a result. Developers, look at CorelDRAW if you want a litmus test for how your product should function. There's a reason CD has been a standard in the business for over two decades. So I am sticking with Fusion on my Mac to run must-have Windows apps such as CorelDRAW, WordPerfect, FinePrint, ACDSee and Quicken. Nothing native to Mac even comes close. Yet.
[Version 5.2.3]

Macatak commented on 04 Aug 2012
Cool app. From free to $10 is a steep value judgement. I'd bet the developer would convert a lot more users to buyers (supporters!) at half that price, if only to access the convenience of managing the app via MAS. Just a thought.
[Version 3.5.6b1]

Macatak commented on 22 Jul 2012
Excellent software. Pricing is a big jump, and a surprise, and as a value proposition, I believe donationware developers would convert a lot more users to purchasers with introductory pricing of at least half off. In retrospect a user could have donated $5, $10, $20 and had the software. It would also have generated user goodwill to have a phase-in period. I respect developers who approach these decisions creatively. Following the crowd is so yesterday. Great stuff though. Thanks Bombich.
[Version 3.5]


Macatak reviewed on 25 May 2012
Oh drat, just when it was looking good. Great tool when it works. Unfortunately, Weather Vane hangs the whole startup if it cannot connect to a server, and that is proving to be highly unreliable. So, again, goodbye Weather Vane.
[Version 2.3.2]

Macatak commented on 21 May 2012
Miracles...after a few months of being weatherless and checking back here on a whim and seeing Weather Vane still listed, I've tried it again and it's working! For now? Thank you.
[Version 2.3.2]

Macatak commented on 12 Nov 2011
Goodbye Weather Vane. Thanks Spike.
[Version 2.3.2]

Macatak commented on 23 Nov 2010
Nice app. Thanks. Is it typical to end up with larger files? I unlocked and combined nine files that were each 1MB. The final size was 75MB, and even when I did a Reduce File Size it still came out to 44MB. I am guessing it may be due to the unlocked PDF being converted to images, rather than retaining the text of the originals, an unfortunate casualty of this convenience. :(
[Version 1.2.2]

1 Reply


Macatak replied on 26 Nov 2010
Thanks for the response. The file does have printing disallowed, as well as many of the other security options. Using the settings as you've outlined, after processing it says Method 1 failed and the pages are all blank. Brute force is the only way this one works.
Macatak had trouble on 06 Nov 2011
WV has pooched, again. Displaying "Fetching forecast" and "null,null", the same as last time the feed was disabled by a data provider. Deleting preferences had no effect, and issue exists on three different networks, so assuming it is not a localised issue.
[Version 2.3.2]

Macatak had trouble on 04 Jan 2011
Great app, thank you. Since the update, the dialog box now says 'move button' and 'leave button' instead of 'leave files' and 'move files' and a bunch of other code gibberish. Anyone else seeing that?
[Version 1.1.6]

1 Reply


Macatak replied on 11 Jan 2011
I've downgraded to 1.1.5, available from the developer's releases page. Works fine. Hope the issue will be addressed, but so far there hasn't even been any acknowledgment from the developer about the problem.
Macatak had trouble on 17 Dec 2010
2.3.2 - hover details is not working, and clicking on a day's weather is not loading the Web page, as I believe it used to on versions prior to the change to The Weather Channel feed. Intel iMac, Snow Leopard.
[Version 2.3.2]

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