avatar image

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
  • Monday January 25, 2021, 3:24 pm
  • Proudly celebrating 15+ years online.
  • Donate now to become a lifetime supporting member of the site and get a non-expiring license key for all of our programs.
  • donate

Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - nevf [ switch to compact view ]

Pages: prev1 2 [3] 4 5next
sb, I use and  DNSStuff is a very handy site as well.

Surely its just horses for courses. And the reviews are yummy fodder.

MojoPac is a new software product recently launched at DEMO which enables you to run applications directly from a USB device, without affecting your PC in any way and without needing the software installed on your PC. It has great potential, but also has some show stopping flaws which this article I've written points out. MojoPac - Potentially Great Software with Serious Flaws

Mouser's Zone / Re: Ideas i want to bounce off you guys
« on: October 04, 2006, 04:19 PM »
Sorry folks. I thought anyone could sign up to be a member, whether they'd donated etc. or not. Probably skewed because I'm an honorary member. Maybe the benefits of Membership need to be sold better.

Mouser's Zone / Re: Ideas i want to bounce off you guys
« on: October 04, 2006, 06:45 AM »
Mouser, how about having a separate members area for folks that donate. This could have the special discounts you offer for programs like my Surfulater, instead of these being available to all members. The bottom line is to deliver greater benefits to folks that donate.

I've not had time to read this entire thread thoroughly, so apologies if this has already discussed.

Hi SuperDuperBoyac.
I have to say you've done an excellent job of pulling together your review from what was the longest forum thread I've ever been involved in. I haven't checked recently and wouldn't be surprised if it is still going. ;D

I've been torn between being extremelly busy and having two short breaks this past month and have only just read your entire review. I'm also a bit behind in posting on my blog and want to mention your review asap.

A few comments.
  • The Feature Matrix. Surfulater uses HTML Templates for all of its articles. These can be edited or new ones added. It is a little involved at present, but will become easier in future. I figure SUL should get a tick for its templates.
  • In the next release (V1.99.0.0 out any day now) you can edit the Style Sheets and add new ones. Two are provided.
  • Tags are planned
Thanks again for a job well done.

One of the best sites on the web for finding out about companies and dishing the dirt on them is the WebHostingTalk Forums:

Agreed. In fact I don't think there is anywhere else weorth looking.

I just want to let everyone know that there is a new Surfulater release now available. Download from and read the Blog post about this release at and the Release notes here.

Surfulater V1.98.3.0 addresses some specific issues that superboyac has raised, including the new 'Content
Elements' filters which let you hide elements in the content window such as the Pencil cells, the layout of the content window has been tightened up, the content window no longer scrolls when you edit an article and more.

I've put together a short movie showing the content elements filters in action here.

The next release will enable easier creation of article templates along with some interesting new layouts that move the Label column so it is on top of the field contents. I'll be blogging about this when it is released. It also includes a major update to the content display to use multi-threading. This makes a dramatic difference when you are displaying a folder which has many large articles.

And finally I've just e-mailed mouser with a new discount for DC Members.

PS. willyram, excellent post. I look forward to hearing more of your ideas.

Dr. FF is a Surfulater fan and uses it himself. See: and

That's the trouble; he's enthusiastic about more or less everything he mentions.  Doesn't much help anyone looking for a comparison. 

I can't comment on Dr. FF and other programs, but I can re-iterate that he is truly an avid Surfulater user.

For the same reason I don't take much notice of "awards."  Nearly every program that isn't a complete disaster seem to end up with a load of awards.   >:(

I agree 110%. These sites are a joke and largely a complete waist of peoples time. Every few days a new one seems to spring up and I get e-mails saying I've got 10 elephants, 6 monkeys or 5 giraffes. All they are trying to do is get links back to their site so they have better search engine ranking. You won't see any of these supposed awards on the surfulater site.

  Also, Evernote and Surfulater use scrolls, while Zoot does something completely different, which is to organize the notes like an 3-pane email program.  It's all a matter of preference.  For some situations, I prefer the scrolling, and for others, I prefer not scrolling.

IMO the reason three panes work very well for e-mail is that you have a continuing stream of new items coming in and the "list" pane clearly shows what's new, which is pretty important.

For note-taking programs the user is in control and knows precisely when new content is added, so this need for a list to see what's new is diminished and the screen space can be used for other purposes, such as showing more content.

The 3 pane style could be changed to 2 panes, with the list items expanding and collapsing to show either their full content or a brief summary. This gives you the best of both approaches and might work well for some folks and programs. This is in fact the model Surfulater uses. I have yet to see any e-mail programs that work this way though.

My 2.5C.

(One question, nevf...what's the difference between the 2nd button which shows "no articles", and the 1st button where you can turn the articles off?  I don't see a difference.)
The first button "normal" shows the tree in the state you've set. ie. With whatever folders you've expanded or collapsed. There are also the options to hide/show all articles in this tree view or just the articles in a selected folder. The second button shows every folder and doesn't show any articles. ie. The tree view is fully expanded. This view lets you quickly locate a folder.

Anyway, like I said, it's the best implementation of a tree in all the main softwares in this genre.
The Surfulater tree has been designed and written (by me) to be very flexible and fast which you can easily see by the various tree views. I'll be adding more views and filters in future.

OK, I was just doing some preparation for this summary, and I decided to try Zoot out again.
I've looked at Zoot several times and just don't get it. It has a loyal and enthusiastic following with folks hanging on for a modern version. One day the penny might drop. SB maybe you can summarize what Zoot is about in your eyes.

Being a Dr. File Finder pick probably gave it a boost. 

Dr. FF is a Surfulater fan and uses it himself. See: and http://blog.surfulat...der-tucows-favorite/

Re. Text only notes. I'm afraid I can't agree on this one and doubt whether many of my Surfulater users would, especially when it comes to capturing Web content. As they say a picture is worth 1,000 words. For example screen shots in program reviews, diagrams that clearly explain something, photographs etc. all add great value to captured information. Can you imagine a "text only" WWW. :down:

Having said that, of course it is totally up the user whether they use text alone or include "some" images. It doesn't make any sense to me to use a program that only allows text. And with Surfulater all of your text is stored in XML, so it is easy to access.

I've recently written two blog (1 & 2) posts that explain how you can add content to Surfulater from other applications. And Perry Mowbray has just released a cool program that makes use of this by tying into the Windows Explorer "Send To" menu.

Can you e-mail me re. Surfulater not grabbing images. I had been meaning to ask you to do this earlier. FYI I am not aware of any issues capturing images. Please send me the SurfulaterLog.txt file located in the folder SUL is installed in. Thanks.

Onfolio by ISI (the guys behind the destruction of endNote from v.7 onwards) has a similar application, onFolio, reviewed here:

OnFolio was bought out by Microsoft a few months back and has changed somewhat, leaving most if not all Onfolio users pretty unhappy. A number have already switched to Surfulater and others are contemplating it. See: http://www.onfolio.c...egories.cfm?catid=10

Post New Requests Here / Re: IDEA: Encryption software
« on: May 21, 2006, 05:06 PM »
I suppose they might see TrueCrypt installed on your system! You can also within the interface associate .tc files with the image files so you can mount them with a double click, which seems to give them away abit.

Hoever, I think the scenario is ridiculous that they describe - unless you are a member of the secret service are you going to really hide information to the point of violence to get a password?
-Carol Haynes (May 21, 2006, 04:58 PM)

Agreed. It certainly isn't something I'll be loosing any sleep over.

As an aside we had a very senior Army Officer leave a disk with very important and confidential report in an Airport Lounge last week. The disk found its way to a Talkback Radio presenter that same day. I find it unbelievable that a) the contents weren't encrypted and b) it somehow got out of her bag, and c) she was carrying it in the first place. A very sad state of affairs for the military.

Post New Requests Here / Re: IDEA: Encryption software
« on: May 21, 2006, 04:49 PM »

Having said that, in the scenario they describe on the website (someone breaking your legs to get the password) I'm sure it might occur to them that you may have used a hidden image and so break your arms too to get that password!
-Carol Haynes (May 21, 2006, 04:50 AM)

But they would need to know that it is a TrueCrypt file in the first place and as there is no signature in the file, there is no way to know this.

Following up on this "Virtual File Manager" idea ... have you guys discussed Soft Gems before? In particular, Virtual Treeview

This project looks like a genuine attempt to develop a fast, efficient and fluid engine for data management / search / recall, based on "nodes". In other words, this kind of engine used within the context of note-taking software, hot-rodded PIMs and the like, could be extremely versatile. I like the idea here - trees that morph into other trees ...

Btw, there is a related site: with a demo of List View, based on VTV (or maybe it was was the other way round).


Andre, I'm afraid I'm at a loss as to your point here. A Tree is just one part of the puzzle. I can't see any mention of a "fluid engine for data management" when I read their site. BTW It sure would be nice if the site rendered poperly in IE.

FYI my product Surfulater uses a Virtual Tree that I've written. This is a very important core component and enables me to morph the tree quickly and easilly.

This is an excerpt from Surfulater, Under the Hood and Down the Road
"A tree component that can display information directly from the XML engine. Windows applications typically have to copy information between the tree and its data store and build the hierarchical tree. These processes can dramatically affect performance, especially as trees get larger. Surfulater does not have these performance impediments."

Post New Requests Here / Re: IDEA: Encryption software
« on: May 20, 2006, 06:22 PM »
I'm a big fan of TrueCrypt, which is free and Open Source. You can encrypt an entire partition or create and use a file that appears as a drive, but encrypted of course. I use this to encrypt my USB sticks and USB drives. Works a treat. I've written Securing Information - TrueCrypt which is worth a read.

General Software Discussion / Re: Taonotes (weird software!)
« on: May 19, 2006, 05:14 PM »
TaoNotes 3D has to be one of the most cluttered apps I've ever seen. I did try to engage the author a while back and offered advice I thought should prove useful. I did get a reply, but I have noticed any action on his part. And what's with the 3D bit!

Developer's Corner / Re: What do I do now?
« on: May 17, 2006, 04:48 PM »
Thanks again for your thorough response. 


Do you have any suggestions regarding financially accessible software to provide registration functionality and/or make installation executables?

I use and would recommend eSellerate to handle purchasing and licensing. But there are lots of alternatives. For installers I have used Wise forever, however there are good free alternatives. One is NIS - Nullsoft Installer. I think that's right.

Another Welcome Spivey,
As Jimdoria mentioned there are some fundamental problems with tracking external files, in particular when they get moved. A more sophisticated OS (than Windows) that kept a history of each files location(s), that could be queried by an application, is needed to be able to handle this.

Several other issues come to mind as well.

First is they whole notion of being able to quickly and easily move your database from one PC to another (think work - home). If everything you need is stored in the one place (a database) this is easy, but not so when there are lots of external files involved. Related to this is the ability (need) to synchronize databases across PC's or share content on an Intranet or Web site. How do you handle these external files in these scenarios.

Second is the issue of the capabilities that can be delivered to edit these external files within the Note Taking application. Specifically can you get all of the features of say MS Word or Excell included in the Note Taking app, or are you better off using the native application itself. And can you get all of the applications you want to use to embed themselves in your Note Taking app, or just a few. And finally are you making the Note Taking app overly cumbersome and complex by having these other applications embedded in it.

If all of these issues could be elegantly resolved then I agree this could be a nice way to work.

In my opinion you are better all around to a) maintain (auto) synchronized copies of your external files within the database, and b) utilize their native applications for editing, except where editing for a specific file type is native to the Note Taking application.

SuperBoyac - I'll reply to your Surfulater comments asap. I'm trying to get a new release out today. 8)

Developer's Corner / Re: What do I do now?
« on: May 15, 2006, 05:53 PM »
Objective, forget about donations and free. Make the price as high as possible. Put together a clear, to the point Web site. If possible get a professional to design it. If not find a good template. If your software is aimed at professionals then the site needs to be professional.

Offer and deliver great support. Promote yourself and your product in places where your prospects hang out. eg. Forums, blogs etc. Ensure your product removes pain that people have. Ensure it looks and feels good, is robust, has good documentation etc.

Get peers to review your product and your site. Listen carefully to their feedback, especially folks that have been in the business for some time. The "Business of Software" forum is a great place to hang out, gather wisdom and get advice. Start by wading through the current posts and archives, Check out the other uISV sites mentioned there.

HTH and best of luck in your endevours.

Developer's Corner / Re: MOANTS Database Design
« on: May 15, 2006, 03:34 PM »
Seems to me like the cart is being put before the horse. Shouldn't the requirements be clearly defined and documented before any discussion of what database may or may not be appropriate.

So it seems to me that the "ultimate" note taking software either can't exist, or would have to be some kind of super-morphing application, with the user taking a hand in the construction (or selection) of the UI. Perhaps this would look like some kind of free-text database back-end coupled with a dead-simple GUI builder front end that shipped with a number of common GUI configurations out of the box. Maybe you'd start out with pages or tabs (a la KeyNote or OneNote) but you could choose a default UI for each one - the "tree on the left" UI, the "sticky notes" UI, the "scrolling column" UI, the "cloud of tags" ( UI, etc. Then you could tweak the templates, mix and match, or construct your own from scratch. ...

Let me talk briefly about the design of Surfulater. Surfulater is primarily an engine that knows little about what it is doing. What you see displayed in the content window comes from HTML template definitions which are stored in the XML database (knowledge base). There are no database schema's, no complex or proprietary database, nothing hard coded into the application, zip. If you want to add a new template (or form in a more conventional database sense) you can, as I showed earlier in this thread by adding a "Note" template for superboac. And CSS gives you control over the look and feel.
Down the track you'll be able to create new templates from within Surfulater itself, instead if hand editing the XML file. In my mind this comes pretty close to a free form database.

Surfulater also uses a tree, witch gives you a variety of different views of the database. This includes folders and articles, just folders, folders with certain articles and a chronological view. More powerful tree views will come when we implement Filters.

The tree is in a dockable/floating/auto-hide window aka Visual Studio. When Tags (keywords) are implemented this window will show a tag cloud, which will provide yet another way of locating content.

Surfulater has a concept of 'See Also' links which enable records (articles) to be linked together to create a web of related information. Simply drag an article from the tree and drop it on another articles 'See Also' field and links are created between the two articles.

Next Surfulater allows you to have a single instance of a record in as many folders as you want, so their is no deciding which folder is the "right" folder for a record. Important stuff.

And as superboyac mentioned you can view all of the records in a folder at once, or just a record at a time, the choice is yours. Again another important capability.

Surfulater lets you embed any files in its database. For example Word Documents, ZIP or PDF files. Alternatively you can add links to external files, so they are instantly accessible, but remain on your hard disk, instead of in Surfulater. The choice is yours.

You can easily push content into Surfulater from other applications. I've recently written about this here and here.

The extensible and flexible design of Surfulater was there from day one, as I wanted to ensure it could be adapted to other uses, besides capturing Web content. I've gone to great lengths to ensure Surfulater is straightforward and simple to use, which belies the power of its core capabilities.

For those interested in more background material on the inner workings of Surfulater I encourage you to read "Surfulater, Under the Hood and Down the Road".

It is great to see this thread spring back to life.

Post New Requests Here / Re: IDEA: HTML Organizer/Viewer
« on: May 08, 2006, 12:52 AM »
Hi Neville,
That's exactly what MHTArchive (the program i'm presently using) does and that's exactly what I don't want. I want the program to just point to the file in my hard disk and not try to integrate it into its database. But your idea of just linking files seems to be what I want, but with no internal viewer, I think I will wait for that day.
-web_stalker (May 07, 2006, 08:48 PM)

Hi WS, Ok gotcha. Surfulater can link to any external files, which is what you want. Click on the link and the file opens in its native app. The ability to display these external (and embedded) files within Surfulater is coming. Note this will likely only be for HTML files though. See the Help topic: Power Features | Attaching & Linking Files to Articles for details.

Perry Mowbray has written some 'Send To' Extensions for Windows Explorer that do what you want. Right click on a file in Explorer, select 'Send To | Surfulater - Reference' and you'll get a new article with a link to the file.

I have got a lot of html files dealing with various topics and subtopics. It will be very messy to create folders for each topic and subtopic. What I would like to see is a app which would act as a container/link to all these files with an internal html viewer. It should be possible to create virtual folders and files (tree format) within it and link the files to an actual html file. Clicking the file should open in the internal viewer and double clicking it open in the default browser. To put it simply, it would be like an enhanced bookmark manager with internal viewer. Is it possible? Thanks.

-web_stalker (May 05, 2006, 08:30 PM)

Surfulater should meet your need nicely here. Create whatever virtual folders you want, add articles to them, then simply attach your HTML files to the articles or link to them. If you attach them they will be stored in the Surfulater database and you can delete them from your PC. This puts everything in the one place, so you can easily carry it around, move it to another PC, back it up etc.

You can attach or link to any files, PDF, ZIP, Word Documents, HTML files etc. And you can have as many attachments or links in the one article as you want. Further they are compressed to save disk space.

See the Help topic: Power Features | Attaching & Linking Files to Articles.

At present all attachments are opened in their associated application, however in future you will be able to open HTML attachments directly in Surfulater, if you want to. You'll probably also be able to edit them.

And of course once you are using Surfulater, you can capture and save Web content very easily.

Coming soon is the ability to publish Surfulater content to your local PC or a Web server so you can share it with colleagues and friends.

And if you want to add content from other applications see my recent articles http://blog.surfulat...her-programs-part-1/ and http://blog.surfulat...her-programs-part-2/

And ... :)

Pages: prev1 2 [3] 4 5next