Sequel Pro

Like most Mac developers that have to interact with databases and more specifically MySQL databases, I had always used the open source and seemingly only decent native Mac application CocoaMySQL as apposed to the web based phpMyAdmin to find my way around and perform basic MySQL database management tasks.

Also, like others who used CocoaMySQL I soon found out that the project had been forked to form its successor Sequel Pro, seeing as any sort of development on CocoaMySQL had been clearly absent for a number of years. Upon discovering Sequel Pro back in late November it was right around the time I was looking for a new Mac OS X/Cocoa project to work on having stopped working on my own. Sequel Pro was the perfect project to contribute to as I was looking for something that was obviously open source and effectively already estabilished, without having to start my own project from scratch and work on it by myself, which going by my past personal projects probably wouldn't have gone anywhere. I also thought the project was of the perfect size, in that it wasn't too big that it would take me a significant amount of time to get up to speed with everything and start contributing code and not too small that the project wouldn't get noticed for a while or development wouldn't grind to a halt at times.


So about a week after contacting the project owners about crontibuting I was accepted as a project member and have been one of its contributing developers ever since. Since joining the project a lot has been happening, with a significant amount of work being put into making Sequel Pro even better than it already is, including the launch of the new website and a couple of more releases on the way to version 1.0. Although there have been times when I've had to stop working on Sequel Pro altogether for weeks on end because of other commitments, mainly work and uni, the benefit of it not being my own project with myself as the sole developer means that development has never really ceased and the project continues to evolve.

In terms of what's exactly been happening since starting work on the project, the main focus has been on improving the overall stability and performance of the application and fixing as many of the most obvious bugs as possible. Although CocoaMySQL was a very impressive application to be written from scratch, anyone who as ever used it will know it had quite a few bugs and annoying behaviours, as well as some issues that caused crashes when dealing with large data sets. All of the developers including myself have a lot of great ideas for Sequel Pro and I truly believe it can become one of the great open source Mac applications, even if there is still a long way to go. Looking at the enhancement requests on the project's Google code issue tracker and the feature requests page on the project's site will give you a clear idea of what's in store for future releases.

Speaking of releases, the first release candidate of version 0.9.4 was made available on Friday and includes huge number of bug fixes related to stability and performace as well as a number of minor usability enhancements. This release goes a long way to providing the desired stability we are aiming for Sequel Pro. Work has already begun on 0.9.5 and initial plans are to focus on further updating the interface and so any feedback is welcome and greatly appreciated.

Posted March 8th, 2009