Ulysses adds trackpad and mouse support; also external folders, keywords and more

Full Ulysses trackpad and mouse support has arrived in the latest update to the markdown writing app. MacStories Ryan Christoffel has been using it and is impressed.

Ulysses has done a great job implementing the new iPadOS cursor, offering the full range of behaviors you would expect. Hover over buttons and the cursor snaps to them; right-click on a sheet or group to open a context menu containing all sorts of actions; swiping left and right on a trackpad with two fingers provides a fast, easy way to open and close the app’s various panes. I can’t think of anything I would change …

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External folder support means that, for the first time, editing external files is trouble-free.

The app has long offered the ability to open external files, but whenever I’ve tried that, it would always mess up the Markdown syntax for links in the files I opened, making it impossible to use. I was afraid the same problem would plague the new external folders feature, but I’m delighted to report that’s not the case […]

My use case is editing colleagues’ draft articles, which are stored in Working Copy via shared Git repositories. Now, I can access those files and make my edits directly from Ulysses. Solving my prior issue with third-party files is a toggle in the setup process for the external folder: the Create Reference Links option is what caused link syntax to be changed in external files. Switching that option off for all the external folders I set up solved the matter, and enabled me to use Ulysses not only for my own writing, but also for making edits to the drafts of my teammates stored in Working Copy.

You can also now edit files stored in Files via iCloud Drive.

Christoffel goes into detail on this, as well as a much more effective way to work with research materials.

Keyword support via hashtags is implemented in a format that makes it compatible with other writing apps, like iA Writer and Bear.

Full-scale Ulysses trackpad support is the headline news here, but the full list of changes is found below, including a whimsical one at the end:

  • You can now use mice and trackpads on iPad (requires iPadOS 13.4).
  • We added support for external folders via the Files app (requires iOS/iPadOS 13.4).
  • You can now mark sheets as “material” to exclude them from export and statistics.
  • You can now add keywords to Markdown files.
  • We added new filter criteria such as “has goal“, “has note attachment” or “is material”.
  • You can now export and import your backups.
  • The WordPress preview now uses the Twenty Twenty theme.
  • The Ghost preview now also uses the latest theme.
  • Added SF Mono to the list of editor fonts.
  • Improved initial download performance when syncing with Dropbox.
  • Added a toilet paper group icon for your convenience.

Ulysses has also revealed what we can expect in the next major update:

  • New Attachments
  • New Navigator
  • Advanced Text Check
  • New Dashboard
  • Revised Interface

I recommend reading the excellent MacStories coverage here.

Ulysses is a freemium app on the App Store. Unlocking all the functionality requires a subscription, ranging from $4.99 for a month to $39.99 for a year.

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Avatar for Ben Lovejoy Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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