SyncSpace has always been a wonderful space for sketching and sharing ideas. You could use it for real-time collaborative sketching or to send your visual ideas to Twitter, Facebook, Campfire, and Email. Today, we’ve released an update that adds many important features.
Duplicate, Move & Edit
Today SyncSpace gains the ability to change existing drawings in ways that weren’t possible before. You can now move or duplicate selected items in your drawings. The text & color for text items can also now be edited.
These changes may seem minor at first, but in everyday use they make SyncSpace many times more powerful. What started out as a freehand shared sketching app starts to become a vector-based drawing editor. We have plans to take SyncSpace even further in this direction in the future.
One oft-requested feature was to enable rotation for drawings. It would have been easy to use the built-in iPad gyro/accelerometer to rotate the canvas and toolbars when the device changes orientation. The problem was that flipping the canvas when the device moves around is a terrible experience for a drawing app.
When sketching on paper you’ve probably found yourself rotating the page in order to get a comfortable angle or to draw veritical lines. We didn’t think it would be very nice if the drawing rotated under you finger if you flipped the iPad around while drawing.
There is always the hardware rotation-lock button, but that is a bit of a cop-out because it means the default mode is for drawing rotation to be tied to device orientation. This is especially true when the iPad is placed on a flat surface, with no clear portrait-vs-landscape orientation.
We think that if you want to rotate your drawing, it should be an explicit action on your part, not a side-effect of how you happen to be holding or moving the iPad. So, in SyncSpace 2.5 you can now rotate your drawing using a simple rotation gesture. The drawing will snap to 90º angles.
To set the drawing orientation for external displays, tap the drawing settings (gear) icon. This lets you specify which was is up if the drawing is shown on a nearby AppleTV or external VGA or HDMI display.
SyncSpace will now export PDF or image files based on your current view of a drawing. If you’d like to share the entirety of a drawing then tap the view-drawing-extents button before exporting. The view-drawing-extents button is next to the home icon in the navigation bar.
Exporting a drawing with a light-coloured background will produce an transparent image. Images with transparent backgrounds can be easily combined with other images or blended with surrounding designs when placed on a web page.
The web-based drawing viewer is not technically part of SyncSpace 2.5 but we’ve been making some huge improvements in this area recently that should be highlighted:
- Drawings can be zoomed/moved using two finger gestures on iPhone, iPad and iPod touch
- Appending #view to any drawing URL will now take you directly to the drawing view rather than the landing page
- Drawings now smoothly transition when zooming
- Many small performance and experience improvements
We’ve got even more great improvements to the web viewer working in the lab and will post an update to this blog when they’re available.
Get it Now!
SyncSpace 2.5 is now live on the app store with two versions:
- SyncSpace Free – Free, but limited to 3 drawings.
- SyncSpace – Reasonably priced with no limits. Not a bad deal for an infinite drawing space!
If you opt for the free version, there is an available in-app purchase to remove the three document limit, effectively turning SyncSpace Free into the unlimited version.
If you want to get in touch (or stay up to date), we’re [@syncspaceapp] and [@theinfinitekind] on Twitter.