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Collaborative writing has been one of the many things the web was supposed to simplify, and yet it’s still as broken as it’s ever been. Live co-editing like Google Docs offers only works for a very few niche scenarios, and newer tools like Draft and Editorially only work great for one writer and one editor giving feedback on a finished work. And the old style of emailing documents back and forth — or the slightly updated version of saving them to a shared Dropbox — is still far from ideal.

There’s one tech tool that’s seemed promising recently, though: git. The geeky version control system used most famously by GitHub is designed to let software developers collaborate on code, and is the very reason people around the globe can contribute to open source projects. Code is just text, of course, so earlier this year two dozen mathematicians wrote The HoTT Book collaboratively using GitHub. That was quite an undertaking, both for its unprecedented collaboration and for using git for writing even when it wasn’t exactly designed for it.

But what if GitHub was reinvented around writing? That’s what Penflip, a new git-powered writing app, aims to find out.


Creating websites can be fun, but web development can easily scare beginners away. Last week we reviewed Weebly, a web app that makes developing a web site dead simple even for absolute beginners. Even being the great service that it is, though, most developers frown upon it for one simple reason: it does not speak their language.

More often than not, you’ll find the developers and the rest of your team at loggerheads for the same reason: the devs want geeky tools, and everyone else wants a solution that’s simple to use without touching code. Is there a solution that can be used by both developers and content managers at the same time without frustrating either group? That’s what Spinto is all about: an app that brings developers and the rest of your team together.


Quick Look posts are paid submissions offering only a brief overview of an app. Vote in the polls below if you think this app is worth an in-depth AppStorm review!

In this Quick Look, we’re highlighting Codeplane. The developer describes Codeplane as a Git hosting focused on small teams and freelancers. You’ll receive 2GB and can create unlimited private repositories. You can also invite unlimited collaborators.

Codeplane comes with a command-line app which allows you to manage repositories, SSH public keys and collaborators. You don’t have to use our web interface, but if you do, you’ll see a nice interface that just works.

Read on for more information and screenshots!