The Strange Case of the Lost Reply
I’ve tried various email clients on iOS, but for quite a while now my favourite has been Dispatch from Clean Shaven Apps. As well as the many integrations and efficient handling of archiving and deleting emails, I like it because it is one of the only apps that lets you order mail in the One True Way.
Which in case you’re wondering is oldest at the top. Newest at the top is fine for blogs and similar news-based things, but it’s not right for anything else. Call me old-fashioned, but that was the default in Eudora and probably in Mutt and Elm and all those too, and it was and remains the best way.
Even Outlook lets you order it oldest-first. Though disturbingly few people take advantage of it.
Anyway, that’s not the point. The point is that today Dispatch let me down. I was typing a reply on my iPad this morning. The reply composition window looks like this:
I did something — I’m not sure what — that made the composition window slide off to the right. Part of it was still visible, so I tried tapping on it. And it disappeared.
There was no prompt, and nothing in my drafts folder. All that I had typed was gone, like tears in rain.
I’ve just been trying to reproduce it, and I can, up to a point: if you slide the compose window to the right it goes off out of the way, like this:
Which is actually quite useful, because it makes the compose window non-modal and lets you interact with your other messages. But somehow something can go wrong, even though I can’t make it happen now.
Not the end of the world. I retyped the mail. But that’s not good enough, Dispatch. You have to be able to trust your email client.