WriteRoom 2.0

Hog Bay Softwareis WriteRoom was already a good option if you wanted a full-screen distraction-free writing environment, but some people found its feature set just a little too limiting. Now that version 2.0 is out, however, many of those excuses to stay away are gone.

In its default mode, WriteRoom works in a full screen mode that hides menus, your Desktop, and other application windows that could otherwise be distracting. It also supports a windowed mode that looks just like any other application window - a feature that is likely to make WriteRoom more palatable to users that arenit comfortable with the standard 1989-ish view.

WriteRoomis standard interface.

Along with the basic text editing features found in version 1, WriteRoom 2.0 adds a live word count feature, rich text support, and the ability to have more than one document open at a time. I was initially concerned that the additional features would detract from the original focus of the application, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that they ddid not get in the way of the WriteRoom minimalist "experience."

Editors will be happy to see the addition of a feature that displays non-printing characters. Now you can easily find the invisibles that can potentially screw up formatting or justification when you place your copy in a page layout application.

WriteRoomis interface is customizable, so you can view your documents in a way that works best for you. For example, I changed my background at text to blue on blue - a color combination that is much easier on my eyes. You can also apply your full screen color schemes to document windows. I didnit find much use for the colored window feature, but thatis just me.

The one feature that I was hoping to see was improved support for multiple displays. In my configuration - a Powerbook G4 with an Apple ADC monitor - still left me without the ability black out my external display.

You can learn more about my opinion on WriteRoom 1.0 by checkout out my earlier review.

The Bottom Line
If you already use WriteRoom 1, version 2 is a nice upgrade since it adds in many features users have been requesting. If you held off on trying the application because it seem too limiting, go ahead and give it a try now - you may find it has the flexibility youive been looking for: A full-screen distraction-free writing environment, or a more traditional windowed text editor.

Product: WriteRoom 2.0

Company: Hog Bay Software

List Price: $24.95


Pros: Improved editing tools, supports multiple open documents.
Cons: Can\'t black out secondary display in full screen mode.