Let me tell you why Sketch is crippled: it has no Windows version.
Now I told you. I know you already knew it.
Next, I’ll tell you a brief history of how we created the Lunacy app, with our unique features (free CDN and a free cloud). And have a look in the future — something we haven’t done so far.
A few numbers:
- Sketch is over 90% of the UX design
- The rest of the percentage is a tough competition against XD, Figma, Framer, InVision Studio, Gravit, and many more.
At the same time, Sketch only works on Mac. Yet, most people work on Windows.
First MVP: Viewer
First, we created the viewer back in 2016.
Then we’ve got 100s of faulty .sketch files from you guys. I mean, the .sketch files were ok, it was just our viewers that failed to open them. Thank you, guys!
Then, Sketch changed its format in version 43, so we had to decompile it again. They still keep changing it a little with every version, cause it sucks at times, but mostly it’s stable.
We had our MVP of a viewer.
Second MVP: Editor
So we were able to create some basic editing. We thought throwing the editing tools and making frequent updates, but it appeared people don’t need a half-assed editor. Either you can make editing or not. We realized that we either have to make 80% of editing, or don’t bother at all.
This stage took half year before we were able to create some basic stuff using our editor. Then debugging kicked in.
Apparently, graphic editors could have tons of bugs:
- There are several ways to make the same operation.
- Combined, they create millions of ways to create the same mockup.
People use different shortcuts, organize the layers differently, create overlapping artboards, masks, and objects. Oh yeah, and there’s the font hell. Fonts like Helvetica are standard on Mac, but cost hundreds of dollars for Windows (if you want to know your enemy, Monotype is a company that monopolized 70% of the fonts market).
So, we started fixing the bugs, several thousand a sprint.
It took several years for Sketch to make a working product.
It took several years for XD to release beta.
We have been working on it for 1.5 years so far, and have been doing mostly debugging for half year.
Examples of what we’re working on right now:
- Sometimes, undo doesn’t work as expected
- Symbols go missing
- And redrawing the ruler takes 8% of CPU when you scroll your document.
All three are planned to get fixed in the next release.
Chase for Features
We support everything for reading, and almost everything for saving.
For editing, we support 80% of the futures. Examples of what we don’t support are:
- Shadow effect. Probably, when you read it, we already released it.
- Gradients. We read the gradients, but you can’t edit them. Fun fact: we have written the code for the gradient editor, but it’s commented so far.
- Editing bitmaps and full editing of the vector objects.
We actually know how to change the world of design for better, seriously. And we’re making some AI-assisted prototypes in our labs.
Still, we want to make something cool in Lunacy right now.
Sketch allows saving PNG assets to your disk. With Lunacy, you can upload your assets to CDN with a single click. You’ll get a working, production-ready CDN, fast. Btw, thank you, KeyCDN, for sponsoring us.
We’ve created a version of Lunacy that works on the web. We called it Sketch the Ripper for a reason. Unlike other viewers, it rips through the .sketch files to extract the artboards, the symbols, and text. You’ll get a single page with everything needed for HTML coding.
Our team is divided in two right now. One part of the team is developing Lunacy to be on par with Sketch.
Another part of the team is working on some experiments for the future.
What kind of future, you ask? We believe, that designers must not be forced to do many things.
- Designers must not start each new project with drawing the primitives: rounded rectangles, circles, and blocks. Designers created enough primitives to make software handle it from here.
- Designers must not spend years of productive life selecting objects. Since early 90s, designers have to learn the art of selecting the right object. 25 years later, software is still miserable, and it maybe has done a step back. While most of us were able to work in Illustrator without the layers palette, we have yet to find someone who can work without the left pane in Sketch.
- Designers must not have to make same stuff again and again. For example, our Icons8 website has 2 typefaces in 3 sizes and 3 colors. Easy, right? Yet, I had to select exactly the same properties again and again. It feels automatic and inevitable, like brushing teeth, but it shouldn’t be.
That’s what we will keep busy working on.
Windows users, come back to check our features in July.
Mac users, give us another year.
Non-designers, give us another two years.
Everybody, here’s a tip: you can speed up brushing teeth twice if you use two toothbrushes at the same time.
Bug Reports and Suggestions
We can’t do it without you. Your ideas, support, and your beautiful bug reports.
- Should you have a .sketch file that doesn’t appear well, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Before sending, you may want to remove unrelated elements, stripping it away from everything that your heart, moral judgement, or NDA prohibits you to share.
- We have an active discussion in the comments on https://icons8.com/lunacy
- Also, we’re introducing our Uservoice-like feature request board at https://request.icons8.com/lunacy