[see update at the end]
Notebook by Circus Ponies was one of the applications, along with Scrivener, that lured me back to the Mac platform after 15 years. Its outline-centric approach and notebook metaphor appealed to me, but once I began using it, I found it a bit too restrictive. While I updated to each new version, paying the upgrade fee a couple of times, I really never relied upon the app. I might have more if the iPad version worked well-enough. But it didn’t and the long-promised upgrade never appeared.
Now word comes (via outlinersoftware.com) that Circus Ponies has, without warning, shut its doors, leaving its users in the lurch, with no support but this vague statement:
If you need a copy of NoteBook 4.0 (3.x and earlier don’t run on OS X El Capitan) or need technical support, you can try sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. There’s a chance someone will respond but no guarantees.
I know that software companies can’t be expected to stay in business if they’re not profitable. But when they decide they are going to shut down they owe it to the people who’ve purchased their product to exit a lot more gracefully than this. There should be some warning. An e-mail sent, well in advance of the day to their customers. If they are an information warehouse, like Notebook, a FAQ on the best ways to port information to other apps should be posted. A sincere thank you would be nice too.
Instead of any of that, Circus Ponies chose to make this their final remark to their long-standing customers:
Best of luck with all the turd note-taking apps that are left.
I say, if you’d spent more time making a better product, you might have stayed in business. Good riddance to you and don’t let the door hit you in the ass on they way out.
January 6, 2015 Update: I checked the Circus Ponies site this afternoon and found that they had removed the reference to “turd note-taking apps.” It just says “Best of luck” now. I’m glad they re-thought that send off.