Tell Apple Books in macOS Catalina needs AppleScript support

Do you love creating audiobooks with Audiobook Builder, and especially love how it automatically adds your audiobooks to iTunes so you can sync them with your iPhone or iPad?  Well, iTunes is going away, so when you crank up  macOS Catalina this fall you’ll want your audiobooks to go to the revamped Books application, instead.  Books needs AppleScript support so Audiobook Builder can tell it all about your new audiobooks – so we need you (and you, and you!) to let Apple know you want Books to include support for adding content with AppleScript.  Just fill out Apple’s feedback form at https://www.apple.com/feedback/macos.html, enter “AppleScript support in Books” in the Subject field, and enter “Especially the ability to automate adding content.” in the Comments field.  Thank you sooooo much.  You’re doing us and a world full of Audiobook Builder-loving Mac folk a favor!

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Hey hey! Can you spare a 64-bit update?

As macOS 10.15 Catalina inches toward us from the distant horizon, we’re hearing a few folks need a 64-bit update to their favorite personal finance application or audiobook-building tool.  Well, you’re in luck, dearest Splasmata aficionado, because we’ve already made 64-bitness our business.

 

CheckBook and CheckBook Pro

CheckBook and CheckBook Pro 2.6 and later are already 64-bit compatible, ready for macOS Catalina and beyond.  If you have any version of 2, these are free updates for you.  Here’s how to update:

CheckBook 64-bit update

CheckBook Pro 64-bit update

These updates might’ve passed you by, and that’s on us. A glitch between the software update checker we used in 2.5.8b5 and earlier and El Capitan and later could lead to a crash, so we couldn’t notify you without risking a tiny bit of data loss. The application will say you have the latest version, but you may have an older version without realizing an update is available. That includes some who suffered the great Mac App Store cataclysm of November, 2015, when some changes on Apple’s end prevented thousands of Mac App Store applications from opening. We gave out free copies of all our software for a few days there, including CheckBook 2.5.8b5, the latest version at the time, but, long story short, if you originally purchased from the Mac App Store, you’ll want to get back on the update track there.

 

Audiobook Builder

Audiobook Builder 1.x, sadly, would never survive the 64-bit leap, because of its QuickTime 7 roots, so we had to completely re-work its little engine that used to could so it can.  That took a lot of work and the result is Audiobook Builder 2 – which is roughly 3x faster, to boot.  The upgrade is 40% off for Splasm Store users, but if you didn’t get the super secret special instructions by email, just drop us a line at customerservice@splasm.com and we’ll get you fixed up.  There isn’t a way for us to provide a discounted upgrade to our Mac App Store users, but we’re happy to set you up with a copy from the Splasm Store.  Send your Mac App Store receipt to customerservice@splasm.com and we’ll send you the same 40% deal.

 

Everything else

Return Labels has always been 64-bit ready, so no worries there.  And then there’s Griddle.  Version 1.1, with sweet, sweet, 64-bit sweetness, is just about ready to go, so look for that free update soon on the Mac App Store.

Sadly, older applications, like Dasher and ViddyUp!, won’t make the 64-bit transition, but we’ll continue to offer them for download.  Brightness Control is a little up in the air.  Anyone out there want a 64-bit Brightness Control?  Let us know at customerservice@splasm.com!

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When Audiobook Builder says, “Unable to add the audiobook to iTunes”

macOS Mojave and later will ask you for permission the first time Audiobook Builder needs to interact with iTunes in some way, like adding the iTunes selection to your new audiobook or adding your new audiobook to iTunes.  If you get a message from Audiobook Builder that it’s “Unable to add the audiobook to iTunes”, you might’ve accidentally declined that request.  Here’s how to tell your Mac it’s OK:

  1. Go to the Apple () menu at the top left corner of your screen and click the System Preferences… item to reveal the System Preferences window.
  2. Click the Security & Privacy icon.
  3. Click the Privacy button near the top right of the window.
  4. Click Automation in the list on the left side of the window.
  5. Make sure the iTunes checkbox directly below every Audiobook Builder item on the right side of the window has a checkmark.
  6. Relaunch Audiobook Builder and try building again.

That should have you off and running.  Enjoy!

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Audiobook Builder 2: Building at the speed of 64-bit!

Say hello to Audiobook Builder 2!  It’s now humming along in true 64-bit, so you get macOS compatibility going forward, but wait – there’s more!  Builds at Normal Quality are about 3x the speed of version 1.5.7, CD imports are about twice as quick, and adding files and opening documents take just a blink or two.  We threw in support for encoding in HE-AAC, dimmed the lights so fans of Mojave’s dark mode will rejoice, cut the temporary storage requirements for each build in half, at least, and goosed the speed of the user interface when building so no more sipping that coffee between mouse clicks and actual results.  You’ll find a few other tweaks, here and there, but the look and feel is almost exactly what you know and love – so you can get right down to business.  For years, we’ve said, “Find your smile in an audiobook.”   We couldn’t be more pleased to introduce you to Audiobook Builder 2 – and we hope you smile a little bit wider when you build your next audiobook with it!

Audiobook Builder 2 is regularly priced at just US $4.95 ($4.99 on the Mac App Store).  We’re thanking folks who purchased Audiobook Builder 1.x from the Splasm Store with a 40% discount (send a message to customerservice@splasm.com if you haven’t received your special offer instructions), and it’s on sale for 40% off on the Mac App Store through December 29th.

Click here to learn more about Audiobook Builder.

View Audiobook Builder on the Mac App Store.

We love constructive feedback and helping our users get the most out of Audiobook Builder, so drop us a line at customerservice@splasm.com if you need anything.

Thank you, once again, dear Audiobook Builder users, for letting us help you find your smile!

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CheckBook 2.6.6 Now Available

CheckBook and CheckBook Pro 2.6.5 flew out the door this morning and, if you’ve updated, you may have already noticed things aren’t quite right:  Scheduled Entries and imported Entries may not save in existing documents and definitely won’t in new documents.  It’s on us and we apologize.  We made a minor change to the way your data is stored so we could include the new “Date Created” column – but we missed a detail and our testing didn’t catch it in time.  The issue’s been addressed in 2.6.6, now available, and we nailed a performance issue when updating documents with a relatively high number of Entries while we were at it.  Your pre-2.6.5 data has not – and will not be – harmed.  Documents created with 2.6.5 will be updated so they work properly, but there isn’t a way to rescue the Scheduled Entries and imported Entries added with 2.6.5 so they’ll need to be entered again.

Mac App Store users can update by visiting the Mac App Store and clicking the Updates button at the top of the window and Splasm Store users can get the update by opening your copy of the application, going to the CheckBook or CheckBook Pro menu at the top left of your screen, and clicking the Check For Updates… menu item.

Thank you for hanging in there, folks.  Send a message to support@splasm.com if you need anything!

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Gathering Console messages for our support folks

Deep support issues sometimes raise questions we can’t ask you to answer, so we gather details directly from your Mac’s log files, System Information reports, and, on macOS Sierra and later, Console messages.  The first two take a few steps, but Console messages are a little harder to get at.  They give us a lot of information, though, and we sometimes need that extra bit of detail to figure out what’s happening behind the scenes.

Here’s how to gather your Console messages and help us help you:

  1. Click the Finder icon on your Dock.
  2. Go to the Go menu at the top of your screen and click the Utilities menu item.
  3. Double-click the Console icon.
  4. If the icon in the Activities button, next to the Now button, is tinted blue, click the button once so the tint is removed.
  5. Go to the Action menu at the top of your screen and click the All Messages menu item.
  6. If we’ve asked you to search for a particular phrase, click the Search field at the top right of the window, type the phrase, and press the Return key on your keyboard.
  7. Leave Console open, return to our application, and follow any steps to reproduce the situation you need help with.
  8. Return to Console, click one of the console messages, then go to the Edit menu at the top of your screen and click the Select All menu item.
  9. Go to the Edit menu at the top of your screen and click the Copy menu item.
  10. Click the body of a message to us, go to the Edit menu at the top of your screen, and click the Paste menu item.
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