Late last year, we shared an update on our plans and roadmap for 2022. I wanted to share with you some of the great progress we've made on our goals and highlight some of these achievements, as well as share what’s in store for the months to come.
Things we've delivered:
✅ Native, built-in tag folders. This replaces the previous folders extension, which felt disconnected from the core app experience. This refactor is part of our overall direction of moving away from using extensions for core behavior to instead letting these elements arise naturally from our core application codebase. We’ll discuss this in more detail below.
✅ Offline editors on mobile. This long-standing request was shipped to what I can only imagine as a standing ovation from on-the-go mobile users who relied on using specialty editors while in areas of low network connectivity. Editors on mobile in general now load in a snap. In addition, their signatures are compared with a precompiled list of signatures for greater security.
✅ Large database load improvements for mobile. Our mobile apps are built with React Native, and our encryption library relies on accessing low-level cryptography methods. Previously, our implementation of the crypto native module for React Native used the default React Native bridge, which involved JSON serializing and deserializing every message to and from native-land. This created a bottleneck which was especially visible on load. In version 3.11.0 of the mobile application, we shipped a new implementation of our crypto bridge library which relies on a new technology called the React Native JSI, which interfaces directly with system-level functions without needing to cross the JSON bridge. We've seen as much as a 3x decrease in startup load times!
✅ Listed for mobile. You can now manage your Listed blog on the go, no matter where inspiration strikes. You can publish public and private posts, notify subscribers, manage your blog settings, as well as create a brand new blog altogether.
✅ Continuing to improve our UI/UX. Our web and desktop apps have received consistent updates over the last several months that have pushed the UI and UX further than in some years combined. If it's been a while since you've last seen us in person, we recommend coming in and taking another look!
Things we’re making good progress on:
🔗 Built-in encrypted files. Possibly one of the most important features we’ve worked on to date. We’re making excellent progress here, particularly on the backend, infrastructure, and client libraries. Our timing is fortuitous, given the new FileSystem Access API which makes chunked file operations seamless. We’ve successfully tested uploading and downloading a 1GB file with almost no tangible impact on CPU or memory usage. This new API is only available in Chrome and Chromium (which includes our desktop app), and is a work in progress on other browsers like Firefox and Safari. For those browsers, we’ll fallback to classic methods of uploading and downloading, but because those methods don’t allow for streaming a local file chunk-by-chunk and instead load the file completely into memory, we’ll likely need to limit file operations in those browsers to 50MB.
⏳ Multiple account support. Account switching functionality has already been present in our web and desktop app for quite some time, but hidden behind an experimental feature flag (adding
account_switcher as a root localStorage entry then reloading the app). We’re working on exposing the ability to enable experimental features via a “Labs” preferences section.
🗓 Tabbed editor support, or the ability to open and edit more than one note at a time, each in a separate tab, similar to how code editors or web browsers work today. We haven’t yet begun work on this.
New from our blog
- Folders: From Extension to Native
- Self-hosting the new extension-less architecture
- 2FA as a free feature
Files. This lives heavy in our minds right now. The ability to drag and drop a file seamlessly from your desktop, have it end-to-end encrypted, then synced to all your devices is a dream coming slowly true. The ability to snag a video from your phone and have it encrypted, uploaded, and available on all your Standard Notes applications—we gleam at the possibility. The freedom. The peace of mind. It’ll be a whole new world.
But we have to build it first. We can't say exactly when we’ll finish, but there’s no stopping us now. The world will come to learn what it means to have truly private, encrypted files, as easily accessible as a piece of text in your favorite note-taking app.