How can we improve Airmail?

Composer overhaul

I know this is rather a summary of different "ideas" and not all are new but I am afraid that 15+ ideas with 4-5 votes will never get the attention so I figured I'd just summarize them. So maybe it's me but I think proper email formatting is a basic functionality that should be given. The way the composer works today is beta status *at best*:

* Everytime I add a bullet or numbered list via markdown editor, I get double spacing between the bullets/ list items (when I paste from Byword, it looks fine!)
* In general, there is no way to adjust line spacing
* Everytime you edit something and then switch back from markdown editing to Rich Text editing and then back again to edit what you just wrote, you get no chance to edit again because it is summarized as [original-html]
* When inside a bulleted list and you want to change the current bullet level to a numbered item, it just *adds* a numbered item on the next level instead of changing the current bullet level (if it were possible to edit the [original-html], I could fix this myself, but read above!
* It should be possible to use tab to indent/ outdent list levels
* Every time I paste text with other formattings, it won't be adjusted to the format used in my email (look at Outlook and just offer 3 options: 1. insert as plain text (I know you could also do this with Option+Shift+Command+V), 2. apply formatting, 3. use source formatting)

Whilst the above are a must in my eyes, this would be a plus:

* The HTML editor should highlight the text in both windows at the same time, i.e. if I highlight a section in Rich Text then it should show me where the relevant code for that section is so I can edit more quickly

I would love to keep on using Airmail but with this composer, I am switching back to Outlook :-(.

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  • Michael Yang commented  · 

    YES. I think another way to summarize this even faster is: MAKE IT LIKE GMAIL'S COMPOSER.

    As Anthony added in comments, the experience of IMAGE EMBEDDING is remarkably creative, in a BAD WAY.

  • Anonymous commented  · 

    Love the app - but the weak editor is a real detractor. Mail far better. Any plans to improve this? Especially regarding the bullets.

  • Marc commented  · 

    Update: I also sent the developers an email concerning this and the question of how we as a community can support them in putting this into practice. Unfortunately, they never answered. So I assume that the strategy "keep using Airmail and waiting until this is finally fixed" (thanks abbm - you are right, it's more of a bug "fix" than a feature request) does not really work here.

    Hence one hint for you guys: MS Outlook for Mac got a few nice patches in the meantime and has a composer that really works. I stopped using it in favor of Airmail a year ago but now I switched back to it (on iOS *and* Mac) and I am really happy with it so far. Might be worth a try.


  • zhang commented  · 

    It is highly recommended to improve the markdown editor. I do not know how it supports the picture, nor can I retain the original content.

  • Nik commented  · 

    May I add a suggestion to fix the undo buffer?

    Am I the only one, who has been undoing from the composer window, then suddenly found myself undoing actions on the inbox? Those two buffers should be separate.

  • Bram Van den Bulcke commented  · 

    Yesterday I updated Airmail to version 3.5. I hoped the composer would have been updated but sadly no.

    I really like Airmail but the Composer is not good at all: especially bullets and numbers styling, undoing is broken (most of the times you loose all the text, instead of the last word, sentence or paragraph), markup (in particular font-size) isn't consistent, even without pasting from other documents.

    I don't have the feeling I have control over the markup. Please fix this!

  • Anthony commented  · 

    Let's not forget to add how badly Airmail handled embedded images in the email body.

  • abbm commented  · 

    Improving the composer is absolutely essential. It is currently so broken that it is a bug, not a "new feature request". Even if you just type text with no formatting, there's a 50/50 chance that your email will be delivered with some paragraphs being different sizes and colours. Trying to add a list will break your formatting. Font size in your signature is bizarrely a different size to what you set it to be. So many bugs!

  • Jan Park commented  · 

    Certainly the most necessary improvement right now.
    This is exactly my every struggle to get my email to look the way I like.

    Sometimes I even go as far as composing my email in pure html and css to then paste it. Because is the only way it looks 'OK'.

    Really excited for this feature to be true.

    Good overview Mark,

  • Dave commented  · 

    Agreed. This and an improved spell checker are MUST HAVES!

  • Anonymous commented  · 

    I love airmail and still a current user but, I have to agree with this. Composer is a bit lacking in several areas.

    One thing I would add is frustrating cursor insertion/selection when at the beginning of a line. The margin in the window pushes the selection point in seemingly random spots. Add in the use of a trackpad and well, you want to throw it out the window.

  • MIke commented  · 

    Thanks for all your detailed feedback, Mark. I want to second all of it, especially the bulleting, line spacing, and Markdown functionality.

    I'd also suggest that the bullet and ordered list icons be broken out in the composition menu. There's no reason for them to be both part of a dropdown, especially as the dropdown is not intuitive—you need to select the second bullet for bullets to appear.

  • John Pok commented  · 

    Thanks for this summary. I too am about to give up on airmail simply because of this inadequacy

  • Villow commented  · 

    Exactly what I experienced on a daily basis.

  • Matthias Jäggli commented  · 

    If you could drop the current composer and replace it by something like - I'd immediately become your happiest user.

    The editor from paper is exactly, how I'd wish to write emails. It's minimalistic, highly efficient and everything works, without learning it first.

    So far Airmail is my main email client and I really love it, except for composing.. the composer is broken in so many ways..

  • Nathan Lenkowski commented  · 

    Man, thank you for taking the time to summarize these glaring issues with the composer. I've always felt Airmail was top notch except for the composing experience, which as you said, is beta quality at best. I'm a paying user whose left Airmail due to several of these issues, but always wanted to come back. If some of these were addressed I'd happily return.

Airmail Mac 3.x: Composer

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