Panic Blog

From the desk of Cabel
Portland, Oregon 97205

Thanks, Ian!

The story of how we hired Ian, one of our Cocoa engineers, is a nice piece of life.

When Panic’s headcount was two — me and Steve — the first thing we needed help with was tech support, but the idea of finding and hiring an employee was overwhelming. (It still is, really.) Riding my bike through downtown Portland late one night, a girl flagged me down to ask which bus might take her to her friend’s house. My knowledge of Tri-Met is limited to the one line I use and which seats have the least crust, so I — stay with me here — instead suggested we could walk to my car and drive. On the way, she asked me what I did, and when I mentioned computers, she said “Oh, I have a friend at PSU who does computer stuff! He’s looking for a job!” I quickly lost touch with Cassie, but Ian has worked for Panic ever since.

After first proving his worth at the often thankless task of tech support while simultaneously taking CS classes at Portland State University, Ian’s programming skills gradually grew. Eventually he seemed ready to jump to the next level, so Stattoo was concocted as Ian’s first-ever Cocoa app, a chance to cut his teeth without jumping into the frigid waters of a Transmit. Today, Ian is a part of everything, including major pieces of Coda and Transmit. We guarantee you’ve used his code.

Today is Ian’s last day at Panic, after over 10 years of service. What’s next for him? Medical school!

I’m sad to see Ian go, but I’m happy to see him follow his heart — how many of us could make such a drastic life change? — and while I love Ian as a Cocoa programmer, I really love the idea of him as a fantastic doctor.

So, here’s to your future, Ian! We’ll miss you, and we’ll be rooting for you always.

Posted at 1:15 pm 31 Comments

Copywriter: Cabel.

The World’s First Emoji Domain

Ladies and gentlemen, are you comfortably running Mac OS X Lion?

Because this is our moment.

Years of technological progression, a steady flowing river of genius and fortitude, breakthrough and discovery, have sent us ever-forward, hurtling towards this. From the humble beginnings of the first wire-wrapped computer, to the rolled-up-sleeves of the hard-working women and men of The Unicode Consortium, to the dedicated Apple engineer staying late in the office to ship a major operating system update while his family sits without him at the dinner table. “Will I see Daddy tomorrow?”, his son asks, picking at his plate. “I don’t know”, is the sad, quiet reply. You see, today is built on the hard working backs of those from yesterday. And on the shoulders of those backs, we will stand tall, reaching towards tomorrow.

The release of Mac OS X Lion added an important new feature: system-wide pictograms, or, as you might call them, “Emoji”. And for the first time, these pictograms are not based on a mobile-carrier ever-shifting method of encoding via the “private” Unicode character space, but are using the officially accepted Unicode 6.0 Emoji / ISO 10646 standard.

So yes, everything we’ve worked for has led us here.

Friends, family, well-wishers: today, history is rewritten.

I give you:

The world’s first emoji domain.


Now that you’ve had a moment to recover, I’d like to give particular thanks to the country of Laos, who run the last remaining domain registrar I’m aware of that still allows international domain names that use any Unicode character. Our sincere thanks must be given to Thongsing Thammavong, the Prime Minister of Laos, for his valuable assistance in making all of this possible.

Update: I’ve just got word that, due to intense political unrest in Laos (untrue), they no longer allow Emoji domains! Yes, .la is no more. Fortunately, the territory of Tokelau (!) has stepped in to meet this intense international need! Emoji .tk domains are now available.

(Why are they so hard to register? Due to fears of IDN homograph attacks, most registrars, like .com, now only allow specific language sets to be used for Unicode domain names. The days of registering ☃.net — a previous Cabel effort in this series — are long gone. In fact, back in 2007 ICANN expressly recommended that “symbols and icons […] such as typographic and pictographic dingbats” should not be allowable code points for domain names. Fortunately, Laos didn’t get the memo.)

Now some of you might be asking, “What’s the point? How is this useful? It requires Lion, it only works in Safari, let alone on Windows. They’re impossible to type. How is this at all useful?” I understand, but you’re not really asking the right questions.

Now, I’m sure those of you who are members of the press will be eager to leave and phone your bureau as soon as possible with this discovery. Thus, I’ll bring my presentation to an end.

My friends, I’m glad you could join me on this trip into the unknown, now made known.

The internet will never be the same.

Oh, and one more thing: if you ever want to tell your friends about Transmit or Coda, just have them visit:



Posted at 11:05 am 50 Comments

From the desk of Cabel
Portland, Oregon 97205

Panic is Ready for Lion

Not long from now, Mac OS X 10.7 Lion will be ready to download for eager Mac users across the globe.

Well, we’re ready. Today we posted four (!) software updates, mainly to improve Lion compatibility and be ready for the future.

We haven’t yet dug into Lion-specific features, such as fullscreen, but these minor updates will at least keep you rolling with your favorite Panic apps well into 10.7.

Better still? All of these updates are 100% free for current owners.

Here’s what’s new:

  • Coda 1.7.1. This important release fixes some annoying possible crashes in Lion. Not much else changed, but that’s because we’re very busy working on the big guy.
  • CandyBar 3.3. Not only are we up to date with Lion’s icons, but we also tweaked our user interface to better match 10.7, fixed the Export size slider to snap to common sizes, and more.
  • Unison 2.1.5. No known Lion issues to speak of, but we did fix a frequent crash with playing audio, squashed a rare situation where preferences would get reset, and more.
  • Transmit 4.1.6. Our amazing Transmit Disk feature (try it!) now fully supports Lion (a “non-trivial” change, I’m told). We also snuck in support for the AWS Tokyo region, Cyberduck 4 favorites importing, and more.

(As always, you can get full release notes by hovering over the ‘Download’ button on each app’s web page.)

These updates are available immediately direct from us. Just launch and use the apps — they’ll update for you. (CandyBar users will need to manually download and replace their current app.)

If you bought via the Mac App Store, hang tight — these updates (save for CandyBar) are currently in the review process, and should be available very soon.

We hope you enjoy Lion!

Posted at 5:23 pm 33 Comments

Copywriter: Cabel.

Yay! 4th of July Fireworks 2011!

(Note: last year, Blogger turned off ‘FTP Publishing’, sadly disabling my personal blog. The good news? I’ve officially scheduled a migration to WordPress in 2017. The bad news? This blog post, which has nothing to do with Panic, will have to live here for now. Enjoy the distraction! —Cabel)

“Hey, Gabe! Nice to see you. You gonna take more photos this year?”, asked the friendly Blackjack Fireworks owner with the large, silver handgun strapped to his waist.

I guess that makes this a tradition, then!

Welcome to my 5th annual look at funny fireworks. (You can get up to speed with 200720082009, and 2010.) These Chinese-designed and American-targeted fireworks from Brothers, Alien, Boomer, and more, hold a very special place in my design, marketing, and explosive heart. I hope you enjoy them also.

Stunning Stock Photography

The lady in the bottom right can’t help but smile every time she hears “You’ve Got Mail!”.


Most accurate “baby boomer” photo ever. Also, please read the “Performance Description”.


Sports dudes: do these guys say “Americana” to you? (I honestly don’t know.)


Surprising Graphic Design

Time from File > New to Save as PDF: 7 minutes.

Exactly how I imagine Oracle’s acquisition of PeopleSoft went down.


Shotgun shells? Pool cue? Or is this baby chicken a suicide bomber? What is going on?

Questionable Concepts

PERFORMANCE: An eerily accurate simulation of what happens to me when I drink a grande latte.


That seems like an exceptionally bad idea.


Who can forget the classic Biblical passage where all God’s creatures die in a fire?


It just seems like a really specific thing to be blowing up is all.


Hot eats, cool copyright infringements.


So, so close.


“And this is my brother, Breaker.”


Classic! Another digital fantasy interrupted by a pop-up window that says “500 GRAM”.


The Grand Finale

Tucked in the corner of the shop, I see this. It’s like they knew I was coming.

Computer? Yes please. What could this possibly be? Stumped, I drew in closer, and discovered the secret…

This firework “laptop” actually hinges open.

Yes. The Windows key! The cursor nub! And this amazing desktop picture:

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s over — there’s no need to design any more fireworks. “Computer” has been made.

Bonus Movie

Here’s what happens when you light “Computer” on fire. Happy 4th of July, people!

Posted at 12:36 am 57 Comments

From the desk of Cabel
Portland, Oregon 97205

Panic at WWDC 2011

Dear Internet,

This week, the Panic crew — all 15 of us, with the exception of Kenichi, who is expecting a baby soon, our fifth this year — will be attending Apple’s always-enjoyable WWDC conference.

We can’t wait to see what’s new in Lion and iOS 5. We can’t wait to meet up with our favorite developers, old friends, and brand-new acquaintances, to swap stories. And we’re beyond curious to know what’s up with iCloud, particularly since lots of people want Dropbox syncing in our apps but we’ve been secretly banking on Apple providing a free way for our users to sync their preferences instead. Oh please, please let that be a part of it.

Now, while we’re at WWDC, our support turnaround time might be a little higher than normal. That said, our support team endeavors to bring the show on the road, all guns blazing. (“They work in a hotel room!”)

Most important, if you see any of us at WWDC — let our Twitter avatars be your guide — please say hello!

We’d love to meet you.

Catch you next week!

Posted at 6:17 pm 10 Comments