Bimodal mobile markdown editors

Mobile text editors (like the WordPress one I am writing this on) tend to be drastically less convenient than their desktop-based equivalents. I am wondering whether this is could be improved if they supported two modes: one input mode in which you would write text without any formatting (possibly with macros for stuff like brackets) and a vim-like visual mode.

In the visual mode one would have a toolbar on the bottom of the screen. You could either select blocks of text and then the toolbar would show formatting for them (turn into code block, make every newline a list item..) or you could select words by tapping on them. Then the toolbar would show word formatting (bold, italic, in-line code) and one could drag and drop words around.

I feel like this would be quite an improvement over what I have seen in editors so far. I should probably extend the open source WordPress app and see where it leads me, but I don’t know java apps too well, so I might be doing a prototype in Reflex.


Generate flashcards from an API

I feel like I am spending inordinate amounts of time looking up functions I should absolutely have memorized by now. To the point where it might be more efficient to just generate flashcards (or even better: something like Lingvist or Duolingo) for APIs.

Such an app would consist of two parts: First scraping through docs. And then generating interesting memory retrieval tasks from it. For Haskell that could involve guessing the order of arguments to functions, matching name to type signature, guessing type class constraints, matching one-line haddock comment to name (and reverse).

This might be monetized by offering to support company-internal APIs for faster onboarding. Not sure, how useful this would be though. Might help a bit, but probably the real cost is understanding the architecture.

I am kinda planning on implementing this sometime next year (Backend: ASP.NET core/Giraffe, Frontend: Flutter). If you would like to join in, drop me a message!


Store ideas for more interesting conversations

Many conversations follow very predictable patterns. “Hey, how are you?” “Fine, you?”, even when we have so many interesting things happening to us. But when we are stressed or spend the last few hours thinking about some homology group, we might not remember them. So, why not store them in an app?

At the moment I am storing them in Google Notes, but this is unsatisfactory for a few reasons:

  • Clutter: I have way too much in Google Notes already
  • Hard to lookup based on topics. I currently save notes with the name of the person as title, but I would like to keep a story for people interested in coding, feminism, that latest techno artist and then have it appear for every person I tagged with this previously.

Maybe this could even be a business. One could for example scrap the Instagram timelines of people for interests. Then strangers would just need to exchange their Instagram names and would get a ton of shared interests to talk about. Or one turns this into a more personal CRM for businesses.

I don’t have time to do it right now, but write me if you like this idea too (no strings attached). My email is (* github user name *)