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TestFlight Build 1.4 (21.6.15)

There is a new Lagrange TestFlight build available with significant improvements.

I've been spending a lot of time tuning how the core interaction model works in the phone app with regard to navigating back/forward, and going in/out of the sidebar. Now with edge swipes fully implemented the sidebar is part of the flow: if you open a link from the sidebar (e.g., bookmark, feed entry), and then navigate back from that page, the sidebar will re-open as if it was a page of its own. This lets you visit a sequence of pages quite conveniently with just back swipes and taps on sidebar items.

Many changes here will be coming to v1.6 on the desktop later on. For example, caching pages is now more thorough: instead of just keeping the source text, now also text layout and inline media can be cached in memory for quickly restoring them later. This is actually a pretty important component of the swipe navigation: when you start a swipe, you need to have the previous/next page instantly available for drawing.

Note that the swipes are not quite glitch-free in this build, with various small visual artifacts here and there, e.g., page colors changing mid-swipe, scroll bars peeking through other UI elements, and page banners missing parts of their background.

Build notes

This build adds swipe navigation animations and changes sidebar behavior. MP3 audio shows up in Control Center and supports remote control events. Files can be opened via a native document picker.

New features

Debug Information shows RAM use in addition to cache size. This includes document layout and media stored in memory (e.g., images).

Swipe navigation: swiping the page from left/right edge will navigate backward/foward.

Sidebar slides in from the left and can be swiped away from the right edge.

Swipe back to sidebar if the current page was opened from the sidebar. This allows convenient navigation of a series of feed entries, for example. There is a gentle haptic tap effect when this happens instead of normal back navigation.

MP3 audio remote control is supported (play, pause).

Currently playing MP3 music shows up in Control Center (sometimes?).

Added "Open File" menu item for opening a file via the iOS document picker.

App is registered as a handler of "text/gemini" files (.gmi/.gemini).

Link context menu has a "Delete File" item for links pointing to local files. You can use this to clear the internal Downloads folder, for instance.


Settings has been reorganized. There is a new Fonts page, and some General settings have been moved to the Style page. All color-related settings are on the Colors page, including UI theme colors.

Inline images/audio will not get discarded during back/forward navigation. The Network > Memory Size setting determines the maximum memory usage for this.

Visited page contents are cached in presentation form for even quicker restoring during back/forward navigation.

Name of the active identity is shown in the toolbar (portrait phone only).

URL field indicators (feed refresh, search query) are smaller on iPhone.


Scroll position no longer changes during history navigation because inline media is not discarded (until limit reached).

Return key in the search input field.

Toolbar uses UI theme colors when the sidebar is visible.

Conflicting colors in the toolbar Identity button. The icon is now drawn as an outline when there is no identity in use.

Known issues

Settings > Identities does nothing.

"Show Downloads" opens an internal download cache directory instead of the actual downloads. This is where data is saved when you use "Download Linked File" on a link. I will likely move this item to some cache management submenu.

Currently playing Ogg Vorbis or WAV audio doesn't show up in Control Center.

Scroll bounce could still use a bit of tuning. The effect feels a bit tight compared to native controls.

Quick lookup results can only be scrolled by dragging the scrollbar. Otherwise the results are dismissed.


📅 2021-06-15

🏷 Lagrange

CC-BY-SA 4.0

skyjake's Gemlog

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