Apps and Platforms
What is a terminal?
Wikipedia explains it in detail, but here’s a shorter answer:
A “terminal” refers to a common, pre-1980s computer interface. For input, a terminal relied solely on a typewriter-like keyboard (the mouse hadn’t really caught on yet). For output, a tiny, monochrome screen only capable of displaying text. The rest of the computer was often so big that it was stored in a separate room.
Modern computers present us with a pleasant façade of buttons and touchscreens, but that old text interface still lives on underneath. Despite the steep learning curve, typing in a terminal can be faster and more expressive than clicking with a mouse.
How do I use this thing?
Terminals are not as scary as they look, but they are definitely an advanced topic.
Here are some good learning resources:
Which terminal standard does Cathode implement?
VT220 –the same as Terminal.app, iTerm, xterm, rxvt, etc.
Which character sets does Cathode support?
Cathode supports Unicode and saves files with UTF-8 encoding.
The app can display all Western European symbols, including Cyrillic, Greek, Armenian, Hebrew, and Mathematics.
It cannot currently display Chinese, Japanese, Korean, or Arabic. We’re working on this.
Will Cathode work on my older Mac?
Any Pro Macs or iMacs made since 2007 will be perform very well.
For MacBooks, MacBook Airs, and Mac minis, the cutoff is mid-2008.
Please note the following older graphics cards are not supported:
- Intel GMA 950
- Intel GMA X3100
- ATI Radeon X1600
How can I minimize CPU and battery usage?
When many effects are turned on, Cathode can take up more CPU and battery than you might like.
There are many ways to control performance:
- Set the rendering quality (minimal, low, medium, or high).
- Lower the frame rate.
- Turn off some monitor effects.
- Disable retina support.
- Increase the font zoom.
- Make windows smaller.
What historical machines is Cathode inspired by?
Cathode was inspired by computer screens as they appear in films like 2010, War Games, and Alien.
Can you add tabs?
Tabs (or something functionally similar) are on the to-do list, but they’re not a top priority. We’re exploring some non-traditional ways to share multiple views in a single window.
Can I buy Cathode on the Mac App Store?
Can I buy Cathode directly from Secret Geometry?
How does the Mac App Store version differ from the independent version?
The two versions are almost identical. Here are some points to consider:
- Independent customers get app updates immediately, while App Store customers usually have to wait a month or so.
- The App Store version is subject to Apple’s sandboxing policies, while the independent version is not.
- Purchasing and licensing is simple for both versions, but it’s simpler on the App Store.
- When you buy through Apple, 70% of the profit goes to the developer, compared with 95% for independent purchases.
How does Cathode’s independent licensing work?
After purchasing you will automatically be emailed a unique license file. Drag and drop this file on top of Cathode.app and you’re done. The license is stored at /Users/username/Library/Application Support/Cathode.
I purchased the independent version; why haven’t I received a license email?
Sorry. Once in a while a license email doesn’t reach its destination.
First, check your spam folder. If you don’t find anything, please email us and we’ll respond with your license ASAP.
Any plans for a Linux port?
What’s the difference between Cathode and Blinky?
- Cathode and Blinky both share the same style, but they’re intended for different audiences.
- Blinky is a simple writing app.
- Cathode includes all the features of Blinky, but it also has full shell access.
- If you’re just looking to have fun and write, try Blinky.
- If you’re a geek who wants to go down the rabbit hole, try Cathode.