Fin

This has hit me more than the Brexit vote! So sad to hear this news. This is the only software that I really connect with and also has an amazing community of other, very helpful, users. Is there anything that can be done?

Say it ain’t so, Joe. I wish you and your team all the very best and thank you for everything.


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It is impossible to adequately express what I am feeling right now. In light of what Freeway has been to countless web designers worldwide through the years, this news truly cuts to the heart. It is a day of tremendous sadness, not merely over the loss of a phenomenal software product but also because the brilliant team who gave it life will now disband.

To Richard Logan, Joe Billings, Jeremy Hughes, Simon Manning, Stewart Fellows, Anna Henderson, and the rest of the amazing SoftPress team, with a humble and sincere heart I wish to say THANK YOU for making the world a better place. Your work made a huge dent in my universe, for the better.

James Wages


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On 5 Jul 2016, at 6:08, Jim Feeney wrote:

I will be interested in hearing, after some of you advanced users
check it out, how Fwy Pro 7 works on the upcoming macOS Sierra. I’m
hoping that there will be no problems.

Indeed.

macOS Sierra disables QuickTime by default (in Safari) and it introduces
a new file system - plus, in general, that Apple tries to enforce
developers to via App Store and the sandbox/security settings of the
system to enforce the way they want applications to work.

Hence I am suspicious that Freeway may not work in Sierra.

leif halvard silli


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Freeway has been a part of my life and career for… 20 years or so since I started using it for the Alsoft web site. I remember being so taken with that when I found out it existed, I wanted UniQorn, too.

Freeway allowed me to start my own web development business after I left that job.

I loved what Freeway let me do. I loved that I didn’t have to deal with the code that was the same every time, and not only could I focus on my design, but I could focus on my code bits as well. This resulted in my Actions for miniCMS, pMachine, and ExpressionEngine.

I loved how responsive and supportive Softpress has been throughout the years, and I loved being able to help promote Softpress among users here in the U.S. I loved getting to meet some of the Softpress team in at MWSF, as well as some of the other users at MWSF and MWNY.

Thank you Joe, Richard, everyone still and previously at Softpress for what you did for us. And thanks to the wider user community for keeping Freeway going for so long. There are still many of you active here whom I met online when I was more active in web development, and this community was my water cooler for those years, before the rise of social media.

Best wishes to you all. May your futures continue to be bright.


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On 5 Jul 2016, at 11:06, Leif Halvard Silli email@hidden wrote:

Hence I am suspicious that Freeway may not work in Sierra.

Not an official Softpress response, but Freeway works fine in the developer preview of Sierra.

Jeremy


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I’m so sad to hear the news. Yes, for us non developers there is a bit of a learning curve but I found the product to be worth the effort because the support was so good. I was hoping this summer to clean up my personal site which I still will do. However, I’m not sure what I will use in the future. Times are a changing and not always for the best. Thank you to the Freeway crew and good luck with your future.

Hugh Sakols
www.yosemitecollection.com


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On 5 Jul 2016, at 15:28, Jeremy Hughes wrote:

On 5 Jul 2016, at 11:06, Leif Halvard Silli email@hidden
wrote:

Hence I am suspicious that Freeway may not work in Sierra.

Not an official Softpress response, but Freeway works fine in the
developer preview of Sierra.

Well that’s good. So «Who knows what comes next?» Hope the can be a
way to «restructure» …

leif halvard silli


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Truly saddened to see this. Been out for the US holidays. A big Thank You to all of the Freeway team.
Where to turn.
This program was my right hand man for all my web work. Would be curious as to what the other Pro’s are going to do with this loss. Never been a big fan of WP but it looks like that is the route I may have to go.
I will use Freeway until I can’t but it looks like it’s back to school again.
Thanks to everyone for there support over the years.
John


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On 4 Jul 2016, 3:16 pm, PixelsArts wrote:

Hasta la vista amigo!

A blow over the years have used this tool as one of the supports of my design studio I have clients and projects in development. But best of all was the team of Softpress that was always present in support. Thank you

SAME HERE / I agree !!!


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Very sad news.

Being an ex-employee of Softpress, Freeway was a very big part of my life for quite a while. I remember seeing alphas of Freeway 1 from afar and then became involved more directly with Freeway 2 onwards as part of the testing team. Also worked on the Softpress website for a while. I think I left Softpress after 8 years in 2006.

Since 2006 I have not really kept up with Softpress and Freeway so this comes as a surprise to me.

I would love to see somebody write a history of Freeway and Softpress, as I expect there’s enough for a book.
I also genuinely think Softpress has a small place in Apple history. I read one of the many books about Apple history some years ago and remember thinking that Softpress should really get a mention, in particular when talking about Freeway’s ancestor, Uniqorn and it’s font technology.

Softpress also sent me all over the place demoing Freeway at trade shows like MacWorld. I visited San Francisco 5-6 times over the years, Japan once (hello James Wages), Stockholm, New York and Paris.

I have some amazing memories with Softpress. Highlights include:

• Demoing Freeway to Mac OS X engineers at Cupertino.
This was in the very early days of Mac OS X. During the demo, one of the engineers joked about how Mac OS X had loads less features than Mac OS 9 despite all the time and money they’d spent on it.

• Demoing to an Apple executive “behind the scenes” at MacWorld Paris. Apple iWeb appeared not too long afterwards.

• Demoing to some high-up Microsoft exec and spending half the time criticising MS software without realising who I was demoing to.

• Japan! I’ll never forget it. We were in a city some 4-5 hours outside Tokyo. Loved every minute and I still want to go back.

• For a while, Softpress was based at Richard’s house. That was weird! I expect it was very hard for the family too.

There are so many other memories that…er…I can’t remember right now.

Oh yes – the crunch periods before Freeway release dates. Working from 9am till 11pm or later to meat deadlines. I’m not sure customers ever got to see this side of things. They would sometimes last for months at a time.

I must thank Richard and Softpress for the opportunity I was given. I travelled the world. Learnt so much. Met amazing friends who are still friends today. Slingshot me into another job (that’s a story by itself) in Central London that I’ll also never forget.

Adiós!


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James Davies,

You and I became friends at that Macworld. Thank you for remaining a friend all these years.

I still remember using PowerGlot to translate the Freeway 3 UI into Japanese, and working hard with my associate here in Japan to translate all the documentation. The really knock-em-dead feature at those old Macworlds was the fact Freeway could switch languages on the fly, which was no small task for OS 9 (pre OS X MacOS), and as far as I know, only Quark Xpress had it at the time. (Today we take such for granted in OS X.) You can still read on article on that at Tidbits (scroll down to “Smooth Operators” — indicates I actually did something right at that show!):

Here are a few ancient Macworld Tokyo photos (you’ll need QT Player 7 to view the VR *.mov file):

Macworld Tokyo 2000 (outside, with Freeway Actions author Alan Shouls and me in leather):
http://cl.ly/3I2z2g1t3o3P/James-Alan-Amaki-MacworldTokyo2000.jpg

Macworld Tokyo 2001 (QTVR download):
http://cl.ly/2J0M3f3L3j0y/download/MacworldTokyo2001_FreewayBooth_QTVR.mov

Here’s a still of the VR, for those without QT7 (me at left, James Davies sitting at center, and my business associates at right):

http://cl.ly/180v2H0o2R3k/MacworldTokyo2001_QTVR-Still.jpg

I was also blessed with the opportunity to visit Oxford and SoftPress a couple times back in those days. I’ll never forgot the lunch conversation we had. We were having sandwiches at SoftPress and Richard Logan asks me which part of the bread I want. Me being an American said, “the heel.” Everyone at the table lifted their voices almost to a scream saying, “Oooooooh! The Heeeeeeel!” Followed by Trash vs. Rubbish, and so forth. My those were good times!

My love affair with Freeway began in 1999 and I’ve been captivated by her and her designers since. I must say I didn’t sleep well last night. I really am brokenhearted knowing SoftPress is signing off. May the SoftPress team be blessed with even greener pastures henceforth.

Best wishes,

James Wages


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I guess that no one will have any objections if I did out the Freeway Moments I made a few years back and lob them on to YouTube. I know they are old, and were never updated for more recent versions of Freeway, but seeing as though the site has been taken down, it’s probably a good idea if stuff like this were relocated elsewhere for the time being.

I see that the Knowledge Base is still active, but you have to get to it direct. Docs - Softpress Talk


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I was thinking the same paul…
and I can’t see why there should be any objections

max


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Gutted!

What a sad day, Freeway has helped a non-coder to build websites and in the process start to learn HTML, CSS and Javascript. It will continue to be my go-to app for creating sites as it allows me to tinker under the hood in a way that alternative apps don’t. Coupled with this outstanding support network it has been a pleasure (and a frustration at times!) to use and I wish Joe, Richard and the team all the best for the future.

Dave


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My initial reaction to the news was not sadness… instead, I find myself to be quite relieved.

From my point of view, a long battle has finally ended… regardless of the outcome, I no longer need to spend any more time or treasure, or energy-- fighting for my ideas or to convince anyone here of… well, anything, really.

A better way to develop Freeway? Over. A better way to use Freeway? Done with, all gone.

Well, not all gone. I will leave here with far more than I came with-- Freeway was my crutch, but this forum was the physical therapy that helped me develop my Web Designer legs. I’ll be able to walk out of here under my own power, thanks to the many contributions of other battlefield friends.

Like it or not, the future is clearer now. A weight has lifted and I am unburdened… of everything except for gratitude for all I have learned and become. For life beyond Freeway.


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Evening Joe,

The sad news has been slowly filtering out that the party’s over, I’m terribly sorry to hear it as a fan of this brilliant software. I hope nobody pissed in the kitchen bin which is always a post party speciality… we probably go to different parties.

It pains me to say this, especially as the gang of pricks at Adobe have adopted it as their business model, however would a subscription model be tenable? I for one would subscribe to keep things going and it would allow a projection of income for whatever guise softpress would adopt next? I’m sure others feel the same, and wouldn’t reflect negatively as in the case of Adobe as Softpress is liked.

Is there an option for the software to continue as open source?

Has crowd funding been considered?

Are you offering the opportunity to side grade with a partner?

I’d check that bin.

JT


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Thanks for posting this, Paul. I’ve was wondering…

On 7 Jul 2016, 8:41 am, Paul wrote:

I see that the Knowledge Base is still active, but you have to get to it direct. Docs - Softpress Talk


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JT, I doubt SoftPress would have closed its doors so formally if they imagined a subscription model would sustain them. There are no doubt other engineering issues too that we know nothing of, seeing Freeway is still an old carbon based app built upon the MacApp framework. It would truly take a fairly large engineering team well versed in modern coding standards to move Freeway a huge leap forward. And that is why it has been my hope over the past year (secretly, in my heart) that some merger or buyout or deal could be struck between SoftPress and Serif, maker of the amazing Affinity apps. Serif is on the fast track to kick serious Adobe fanny, and adding a powerful web design tool to their collection would be yet more icing on the cake.

Consider well what Serif have already (which sadly, for now anyway, is only for mock ups):

Immediately upon seeing that video I wrote them to suggest they take it further, toward full blown HTML output. My lone voice won’t mean much unless the rest of you join in, so here’s their contact info:

I’ve purchased both Affinity Designer and Photo, and while I don’t use them full time yet because they haven’t yet replaced Photoshop and Illustrator, I contribute feedback toward making that happen.

If there was a way to keep Freeway alive AND advancing (finally prying it off MacApp and on to modern coding standards, Retina facelift, Responsive design for dummies like me that doesn’t involve stupid templates) then I agree we should be fighting to keep it alive. But not seeing that happen, I myself must now explore other avenues.

I am aware of RapidWeaver and Stacks, and I had a detailed look at both recently and found that combo seriously lacking. It’s no Freeway replacement, believe me. And nothing else out there really compares to Freeway either That has been true since Freeway’s inception, which is what brought me to SoftPress in the first place.

That’s why I see Serif as the lone company out there who has the engineering capacity to get a web design tool created. Where there’s a will there’s a way. So it’s all a matter of inspiring that will in them.

Best wishes,

James Wages


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@James I totally disagree RW is one of the best WYSWYG web design tools out there (I have worked with both FW & RW for years now). And before everyone shots me down (I know you will as a few on here have an unnatural hate towards RW). I would like to see these amazing FW built websites - please? Then Ill happily admit I was wrong.


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Rapid Weaper lovers are as stubborn a bunch of designers as we die-hard Freeway users are! There’s not convincing of either camp. But let me tell you flat out that my brain works different. I never created a full blow Responsive site in Freeway because I am not as brilliant as Thomas and Ernie and countless others here who have been brilliantly successful with that. Nor have I ever found Rapid Weaver, even with STACKS, to be what my poor, feeble brain needs to kick content onto the web in a fully Responsive form with multiple breakpoints. But if you watched that Serif video I posted in my previous message, now that’s the kind of intuitive design for me! And truly, that is the kind of design that Freeway affords my feeble brain when it comes to legacy table-based layouts. It’s not just me either, Paul Dunning has said the same.

Hands down, Serif kicks booty when it comes to their existing Affinity apps. If you’ve never tried them, please do so. That’s why I am eager to see them expand the functionality shown in their video to a true HTML generator. I want something almost as easy as MacPaint was for me, back in the days when I was 13 and my father brought home a Macintosh 128k. The intuitive nature of that UI was brilliant. And that’s exactly what struck me in 1999 when I first laid my eyes on Freeway. No coding required. No studying for days and hours to figure out what to do. Indeed, no picking up of the manual required for simple designs. That’s what I want. That’s what I need. That’s now what RW offers to me. And yes, I’ve tested about every version of RW that has come out, since its inception, just so I could compare with Freeway. I myself don’t see a benefit in RW. I have my eyes on Serif.

–James Wages


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