Jonathan Reed

2 posts on MacStories since February 2024

Jonathan is a graphic designer at DesignStudio. As well as being a long-time Apple user he is a huge film and television aficionado and is very interested in the intersection between the two mediums and technology. He lives in London with his wife and daughter and is writing his bio in the third person.

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Mona 6 Moves from High Visual Customization to Advanced Automation

Mona, the Mastodon client for iOS, iPadOS, and Mac from Junyu Kuang, is out today with a significant version 6 update. Mona is my choice for using Mastodon primarily due to what John referred to in his review as its ‘epic level of customization.’ Everything from how the taskbar at the bottom of the screen looks to how posts are displayed is fully customizable. Even the main app view on iOS can be vertically split in two.

But Mona is not just about looks; it’s also a solid tool for navigating Mastodon. Things like the ability to privately set colors or notes to other users, timeline syncing across your devices using iCloud, and full support for VoiceOver make it a strong choice for a wide variety of people.

Which brings us to this new update. In the year and change since the mass Twitter exodus, Mastodon has matured a lot as a platform, introducing new features that users can take advantage of while filling some of the gaps impeding the platform from growing. Version 6 of Mona includes those new features while advancing its power user functionality with powerful new Shortcuts actions, including one that takes advantage of the Action Button on the iPhone 15 Pro.

Let’s dive in.

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The Browser Company Announces Act II for Arc: ‘The Browser That Browses For You’

Today, The Browser Company announced a selection of new features coming to their Arc browser for Mac as part of what they are billing ’Act II’ of their increasingly popular app. There are four features in total, centered around the theme of ‘the browser that browses for you.’

For those unfamiliar, Arc started as a Mac browser built around the Chromium code base with eye-catching features like tabs listed down the side, Split View, built-in ‘easels’ and notes, and the ability to adjust the visual look of webpages. Arc is now targeting what CEO Josh Miller has called ‘a post-Google Internet’ by implementing AI within the browsing experience, amongst other strategies.

Current ‘Arc Max’ AI features like ‘Ask On Page,’ which answers questions about the contents of webpages, and ‘5 Second Previews’, which summarises a webpage at the other end of a link, have all proved to be hits with users.

It’s no secret I’m a fan of Arc. I would even call their ‘Shared Quotes’ feature my favorite ‘little’ feature in any browser right now. The Browser Company has big ambitions for 2024, including an imminent launch on Windows, and Miller had this to say about Arc’s next step:

“Here is our vision. It’s really simple. You tell Arc what to do, and Arc will go and do it for you.”

It’s a very broad statement, but with the new features announced today, the context of what he is saying comes more into focus. Two of these new features are available today, with the other two coming soon. Let’s take a look at them in detail.

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