If you are a fan of the written word displayed on an a high resolution illuminated screen, Mac is the best place to be. Over the past few years the experience of reading and writing on the Mac has kept on improving. There are innovative Markdown editors like Ulysses and Writer Pro out there, as well as beautiful RSS readers like Readkit. Slicereader joins this club with its own take on reading on the Mac.
Slicereader is a distraction free reading app for the Mac. It takes text from the input source (a webpage, Markdown file, or copied text) and slices it into smaller pieces showing just one paragraph at a time. You can then use the spacebar or the right to left swipe gesture on the trackpad to go to the next page. For someone with a short attention span, Slicereader is a godsend.
The first time you use Slicereader, its lack of options might seem confusing, but that’s the beauty of this app – it’s an empty shell with no UI. Keyboard shortcuts, menu options and a web bookmarklet rule this app. Want to open a document? Try Cmd+O. Want to slice plain text, Markdown or a Fountain file? How about Opt+Cmd+0. The Preferences menu in Slicereader is blacked out and you can’t mess with the font, font size or the color. Thankfully, Slicereader looks gorgeous in its default state (especially the night mode). Slicereader teaches you all the tricks with a handily sliced welcome document. There’s also bookmarklet support to slice any article from the web instantly.
As a 90’s kid who grew up on the internet, I make more than my fair share of silly typos. Ulysses does a great job at hunting down the big blunders, but the really small mistakes need thorough proofreading to weed out. This is where SliceReader with its huge fonts and distraction free layout really shines. I’ve been using Slicereader for this purpose for the last couple of days and I’m constantly finding small details I missed when editing in Ulysses.
Another side effect of growing up on the internet is short attention span. Long-form articles should be an enjoyable experience, not a battle royale inside the brain. Slicereader is tremendously helpful here as well. Slicereader is a one man side project by Mutahhir Ali Hayat, a developer at Hog Bay Software, makers of apps like WriteRoom. If there’s one complain I have for Slicereader is that there is no integration for Pocket/Instapaper. Yes, the bookmarklet works really well but I’m not always on my Mac when I find interesting articles I want to read later. It might go against Slicereader’s sheer simplicity but I would love to see read-later services integrated in near future. Also, live or manual refresh options. Slicereader is available for $2.99 on the Mac App Store.