I removed FoldingText from the Mac App Store last week.
The download at www.foldingtext.com is still there, and requires a license, but I’ve changed the license price to $0. I’m in the process of trying to decide what to do next with the project.
I created FoldingText 1 over 2009-2014 time period together with Mutahhir as main other developer. Goal was plain text productivity platform. Over time markdown became a core component and complexity grew and I started to think maybe this wasn’t turning out to be the project that I was originally trying to build.
In 2014 Hog Bay Software sales weren’t enough to sustain all 4 developers and had to shrink back to just me. Soon afterward I wrapped up a bunch of work that we’d done into FoldingText 2. At this point I wanted project to work for existing users, but I wasn’t using it myself. My efforts were redirected to building TaskPaper 3. TaskPaper’s a less ambitious project, but I think simpler and more in line with my own goals.
Mutahhir decide to come back to create FoldingText 2.1 and 2.2 as a side project (he had/has another full-time job because FoldingText’s not been making enough to support a full-time developer). He added a number of features including the outline view and did lots of smaller updates and code cleanup.
Sales still weren’t sustainable. Since the incremental changes Mutahhir was making weren’t helping sales Mutahhir decided to take it in different and riskier direction that he was interested in exploring. I wasn’t terribly excited by the idea, but I was/am grateful that Mutahhir was still willing to put energy into the project, trying to move it forward.
Mutahhir put a lot of time and effort into this route, but unfortunately this new take on FoldingText was too much of a departure from the original app. After posting the firsts preview release the reaction was that very few existing FoldingText users thought they could make use of FoldingText in this new form. It just wasn’t what they wanted or could use.
Mutahhir continued to think about fixes and alternative packagings, but at this point I think the project switched from an interesting possibility into a burden for him. After a few tries at this and that he’s made the decision that it’s just not worth the time and effort to try to bring FoldingText to a new sustainable phase. I understand completely.
I’m sorry it didn’t work out, but I really want to thank Mutahhir for all his work trying to make FoldingText work. It was a lot of time and effort without much reward the last few years. Thank you for the effort!
Mutahhir’s transferred responsibility for FoldingText back to me.
Ideally, I’d like to see the project continue to move forward so that existing users can keep using it. But it’s not financially sustainable right now, and I need to put all of my time into WriteRoom and TaskPaper.
The two scenarios that I can imagine are I find someone else to take over the project, or I open source the code and hope for the best. I’m looking for feedback, what would you like to see me do with this project? Does anyone else have skill/interest in taking it over?