Hi all,

This is just a quick update on the work I’ve been doing for the last month or two (apologies for being quiet on the blog for so long!).

Release Status of 7.1.74: Arriving This Week (by 28th June 2019)

I’ve sent it to Chrome’s servers to be distributed, but it can take a few days to reach everyone.

The great news is it’s all automatic, so you don’t need to do anything except watch for a notification at the top of Gmail to refresh it.

It’s a LOT faster, so you can be too 🙂

I’ve mostly been doing heavy performance optimisation to improve ActiveInbox’s load times, hopefully down to no more than few seconds, and make sure it never slows down Gmail while you’re writing new emails.

(For the geekily inclined, the reason it was slow to load was that in last year’s major V7 rewrite, we built a sophisticated cache system so all your tasks are stored inside Chrome… which is a lot faster than V6 was… BUT, we began to notice that as the cache increased in size then it became the performance bottleneck. My work over the last month has been to streamline that.)

Bug Blasting

I’m always doing little patch updates as you kindly report things to support, which are small enough that they’re too boring to list, but there’s a couple of hefty ones at the moment.

Senders Not Appearing in Task Lists

It’s purely cosmetic, no data is lost, but I entirely empathise that it’s infuriating. It turned out to be a one-character-wrong mistake that’s affecting quite a few accounts. (Basically in the bug, ActiveInbox thinks no emails have senders… which is rather a short-sighted conclusion for an email app, but it’s not naturally gifted on the creative intelligence front!).

This is fixed in 7.1.74, but that might take a few days to roll out. You won’t need to do anything other than hang tight.

Irritated By The Black Banner About Marking Emails As Done?

For too many months, I’ve been scratching my head (and my eyes, and my arms, and everything else) for a handful of continual reports that once in a blue moon, emails marked as done come back.

Because it’s so fleeting, even when I jump on a call straight away with affected people, it’s often no longer a problem. It’s been a nightmare to catch.

So, I built a ‘hunter’ into the code to go looking for it. But, the first version of the hunter was somewhat over enthusiastic, like the first day of a new job. I told it to look for elephants, but it kept picking up rabbits and asking “is this an elephant? Do you want it?”.

As such, a lot more of you have seen false-positive black banners than you deserved too. Sorry about that!

In the latest release, the hunter is more mature, more capable, and more relaxed. Ideally you’ll never notice it hunting 🙂

Firefox Support is still delayed 🙁

We’ve been wrestling with Firefox’s release process for a long time, but essentially because ActiveInbox is huge by extension standards, it’s proving really hard to get through their human review process (we think because it’s breaking their tools).

Despite the fact they make us jump through lots of hoops, I actually do really support Firefox’s privacy mission, and want ActiveInbox to work there again.

However, for the foreseeable ActiveInbox is unlikely to work in Firefox – there are too many human elements to get through.

If you just want to use your Gmail accounts in different browser windows, to make them easy to tab through, might I suggest using Chrome’s Profiles, where for extra wizardry, you can create different desktop shortcuts for them to launch with different profiles… https://www.ghacks.net/2016/03/26/use-multiple-chrome-profiles/

I promise to write more often

I feel like the naughty child who forgot to send their grandma a thank you letter… I’m going to get back into blogging even the more minor updates we make to ActiveInbox, just to keep the conversation flowing.


This was written by Andy Mitchell