Version History

The Journal has been in constant use and development since the summer of 1996.

This is a detailed list of all recent changes for The Journal 8, and a summary of the history of the previous versions. Backwards. (If you want to read the full history of The Journal, start from the bottom. 🙂 )

The Journal 8


Release 2 November 2023

  • On Help menu, “The Journal Home Page” goes to the wrong page.
  • Forced creation of The Journal folder in ProgramData.
  • Changed shareware popup to only show # of days used.
  • Removed outdated URLs from the Help menu.
  • In split-screen editing, entry in active pane is sometimes overwriting the entry in the other pane.
  • Adjusted timing of searching while typing on the main form.
  • Moved prev/next entry buttons together on the left.
  • Prev/next entry buttons not properly resizing when changing UI scale.
  • Can’t use DEL key to delete newly inserted doodle.
  • Getting an error when deleting a newly created sub-topic.
  • A black square showing in context menu in Category Properties category tree.


Released 13 July 2021

  • Added User option: “Prompt to confirm when deleting entries”
  • Sometimes getting an error when editing topics.
  • Rare error with displaying calendar charms from upgraded entries.
  • Full screen mode and shareware forms are always displaying on the primary monitor, regardless of which monitor The Journal is on.
  • Sometimes getting an error when restoring from minimized.
  • Sometimes getting stale pointer errors in entry tree.
  • Unable to edit some pasted text.
  • Sometimes getting an error on Next/Prev Entry.
  • Sometimes getting an error with “Delete Link”.
  • Error loading corrupted entry shouldn’t abort loading other entries.
  • Sometimes getting an error when importing from Evernote.
  • Sometimes getting “index out of bounds” error when viewing consolidated entries.
  • When category tabs color is active, sub-category tabs lose their color when updating category properties.


Released 15 December 2020

  • Enhanced Batch Entry Import “Simple Export” file import to support entries with date headers like: Thursday, March 12, 2020
  • An imported entry with a “vertical tab” character (0x0b) is causing a “List index out of bounds(-1)” error when opening that entry.
  • Sometimes getting an error when installing a new add-on.
  • Sometimes getting an error when deleting a Journal Volume from Journal Volume Properties.
  • Sometimes getting an error when opening Backup Settings from the Backup form.
  • Sometimes getting an error when doing automatic backup on closing The Journal.
  • Sometimes getting error “Cannot open clipboard: Access is denied” when opening entries.
  • The auto-minimize option might try to happen during a long import.
  • Minor improvement to Check for Update to accommodate interim updates.


Released 2 March 2020

  • Getting an error when using the full screen editor on entry with a table.
  • Importing from Diaro sometimes duplicating previously imported entries.
  • Getting an error importing some Evernote entries.
  • Fix for opening transactions after long idle.


Released 13 November 2019

  • Entry tree highlighting is overriding selected-entry highlighting in entry tree.
  • Sometimes getting an error when opening Search Entries…
  • Sometimes getting an error when minimizing.
  • Sometimes getting an error when changing categories after a long idle.
  • Search Entries won’t find “100” in entry text “$100”.
  • With extended security active, can’t log in after changing user password.


Released 3 September 2019

  • Sometimes getting a SQLite error when changing tabs.
  • A corrupted JPG image is interrupting Diaro import.
  • Need “Change Entry Date/Time” on entry tree context menu.
  • Sometimes possible to make a circular category-subcategory reference.
  • SQL error in export to TJEXP without version information.
  • Sometimes getting an error loading upgraded background images.


Released 7 May 2019

  • When full screen view is active, auto-minimize locks The Journal.
  • Getting “error loading category” every time The Journal starts.
  • Sometimes getting an access violation when closing The Journal.
  • Importing from Diaro not importing photos.
  • “Argument out of range” when double-clicking on a decade.
  • Login form and shareware notification forms need to make sure they’re visible.
  • In Backup The Journal, clicking on the “Backup Settings” button can cause an error.

Released 6 February 2019

Bugs Fixed

  • Getting an error when doing a backup: “EAccessViolation: Access violation at address 00FB2489 in module ‘Journal8.exe’. Read of address 00000000”
  • Getting an error: “Cannot focus a disabled or invisible window”
  • Don’t override mousewheel handling on Windows 8/10.
  • Uncaught exception when doing a search query.
  • When editing User Images, sometimes getting a “divide by zero” error.
  • In Search Entries by Topic, sometimes getting an error on entries with tables.
  • Getting error “SQLite3 Error 8 – attempt to write a readonly database” sometimes after a long idle period.
  • Getting error “EOutOfMemory: Out of memory” when pasting into an entry.
  • On high DPI displays, the toolbar looks crowded.
  • Form for editing custom spell checker dictionaries isn’t scaling properly on high DPI displays.
  • If Journal Volume becomes read only due to external software, wait for it to become available again.
  • Sometimes getting an error when selecting a font from the toolbar.
  • Creating entries with dates before 1/1/1900 is having issues.
  • Getting an error when double-clicking on Journal Volume file in Windows Explorer.
  • “Always backup on closing” option not working if The Journal is closed while minimized.
  • Including trailing space when selecting a word has issues.
  • Table right-click context menu doesn’t include “Merge Cells” or “Split Cell(s)”.
  • Access violation when printing an entry.

Released 18 September 2018

Bugs Fixed

  • “Delete Link” not deleting link on email address.
  • Changing the default category font isn’t sticking.
  • Shouldn’t be able to “Insert Template” on a category folder view.
  • “Display first line of entry in tree” option sometimes causing an error in Entry Report.
  • Sometimes getting an error after deleting a style.
  • Drag-and-drop rearranging of entries isn’t working properly if the category loose-leaf entries option is set to “reverse” but no actual sorting is active.
  • Sometimes getting error: “EOleException: The RPC server is unavailable”
  • Error on startup: “EInvalidOp: Invalid floating point operation”.
  • Sometimes getting an “SQLite3 Error 10 – disk I/O error” when starting to save entries.
  • A search result entry that is a sub-entry of a calendar entry is displaying a weird path (ex: “2000-2009\2003\9\23\Name”).
  • Search result entries that are sub-entries of a calendar entry sometimes aren’t being sorted properly.
  • Pasting text copied from Visual Studio watch window is causing an error.
  • Sometimes getting an error when deleting a child topic.

Released 24 July 2018

Bugs Fixed

  • “EArgumentOutOfRangeException: Argument out of range” when closing.
  • Minor tweaks to the primary category entry UI.
  • Getting EOleSysError error when closing an inserted MS Word document.
  • EJsonParserException: String not closed (1, 62) on loading entries.
  • Some calendar entries are displaying 1-year-and-1-month “off”.
  • Backup error: “EFCreateError: Cannot create file” when backup path includes an improper drive letter.
  • “Entry Index” report should display the first line of the entry if that category option is set.
  • Posting Cyrillic characters to LiveJournal isn’t working.
  • Can’t use Ctrl+V to paste into the Search box if the active entry is read only.
  • All HTML exports should use UTF8.
  • Topic names with ampersands are not escaped in the status bar.
  • Error on startup: “EInvalidOp: Invalid floating point operation”
  • Error when deleting a topic in Edit Topics.
  • Using hot-keys for bold/italic/underline while typing isn’t always updating toolbar buttons.


Released 26 June 2018

Bugs Fixed

  • When customizing a toolbar, trying to put a “New Separator” on the toolbar is generating an error.
  • Getting “Backup Error. #1” when attempting to backup a non-auto-load Journal Volume.
  • Mouse wheel isn’t scrolling online help.
  • Adding new topics in “Edit Topics” isn’t working.
  • The toolbar list of topics isn’t being updated after adding topics with “Tag Entry…” or “Apply Topic to Text…”
  • Need to more gracefully catch error when Journal Volume cannot be created.
  • After giving a category a password, can’t get back in to that category.
  • Entry dates are being saved in universal time instead of local time.
  • There is no reason to include the indexed search information in the backup file, as it will be rebuilt after restoring.
  • There is no indicator when saving a lot of entries, just a spinning mouse cursor.
  • Search by Topics, View All Results with “Display only topic text” checked doesn’t show category or entry headers.
  • Search by Topics is unnecessarily indexing entries for normal text search.
  • Search by Topics, View All Results with “Display only topic text” checked isn’t displaying content of entries that have been tagged with the topic.
  • Deleting a style in Format Styles causing an error if the deleted style is the “Style for following paragraph” of another style.
  • Getting an error with hot-key Ctrl+Shift+T (Set Focus to Entry Tree) when entry tree is not visible.
  • When selecting multiple cells in a table, if the fonts are the same but the sizes are different, the incorrect font name is displayed on the toolbar.
  • Cannot login after renaming user.

Released 11 June 2018

Bugs Fixed

  • On Windows 7, sizeable forms are scaling large (but the controls are properly scaled).
  • When starting in-UI search after a paste, it still acts oddly.
  • Getting error: “EJsonParserException: Expected “{” but found identifier (1, 2)”
  • Shareware nag screen document text isn’t scaling to larger UI sizes.
  • Cut to clipboard needs to check for leading/trailing spaces (like delete/backspace).
  • Error on pasting text with images: “EInvalidGraphicOperation: Scan line index out of range”
  • Installed add-on packages not being upgraded properly.
  • Printing a particular page or page range of an entry isn’t working.
  • The Journal is becoming unresponsive when opening a Journal Volume.
  • When editing Format Styles, got an error: “Cannot focus a disabled or invisible window”
  • Search highlighting in the entry tree is out of place when node text includes entry parent title.

Released 4 June 2018

Bugs Fixed

  • Error viewing non-auto-load Journal Volume in JV Properties.
  • File links tagged with a topic aren’t upgrading properly.
  • Entry calendar charms displaying differently in larger UI modes.
  • User Preferences form sized oddly after upgrading.
  • Categories with “Start on latest entry by default” aren’t bringing up the last calendar entry.
  • Pasting a string into the in-UI search box doesn’t start the search.
  • Batch Entry Import: Simple Export file import not working for all cases.
  • Sometimes a non-empty calendar entry shows an empty/“new entry” icon.
  • Error opening object inserted in an entry.
  • Sometimes getting “SQLite3 Error 8 – attempt to write a readonly database” on save.
  • Imported HTML with colored text is losing the text color.

Released 28 May 2018

Bugs Fixed

  • “Sync from Backup” getting an error.
  • “Updating entry links” portion of “Sync from Backup” is really slow. (needs a transaction, at least)
  • Getting an error when opening The Journal: EJsonParserException: String not closed
  • Getting an error if any Journal Volume is marked as not “auto-load”.
  • Error on upgrade: Access violation at … 00ABA346 … Read of address 00000057


Released 25 May 2018

Bugs Fixed

  • “What’s New in The Journal 8” Notebook document references The Journal 7.
  • Error upgrading large (250MB+) entries.
  • Error when changing option “Theme applies to form borders”.
  • Sometimes getting an error when deleting the topic at the top of the tree.
  • Resetting password isn’t working.
  • Error when choosing a new font color from the toolbar.
  • User custom colors aren’t being saved properly.

v8.0.0.1243 – Initial release
Released 23 May 2018

May 2018: The year 1996, when The Journal 1 was released, keeps getting farther away. =) For The Journal 8, I pulled apart, tinkered with, redesigned and/or replaced a number of internal components, especially the database. This allowed me to vastly improve how The Journal stores entries (and everything else), permitting stronger security and more flexible (and compact) access. Then I made core features of The Journal, like searching and topics and drag-and-drop, even better than before. Overall, the improvements are more subtle than in-your-face and obvious (except maybe the new, more Windows 10-friendly theme), but they are pretty cool nonetheless. At least, I think they are. =)

The Journal 8’s new features:
Improved searching! Searching your entries from the main UI is faster and easier than ever before–and encompasses all your active categories!
Improved security! Your entries have never been safer! The Journal now uses 128-bit AES (American Encryption Standard) throughout, and uses salted, iterated hashing to secure your passwords.
Improved topics!
Improved drag-and-drop support! Drag-and-drop entries between categories, between users, and even Journal Volumes! Drag-and-drop files directly into the entry tree!
PDF support! Easily print (or save or export) your entries to PDFs!
More word processing power!
New visual themes!

The Journal 7

April 2015: “The Journal, Evolved!” The Journal turned 18 years old in June of last year (making it my second child to reach voting age). The Journal 1 was written for Windows 95, and supported only daily entries. No “Notebook” category. No reminders. And I was the only one using it. =)

So much has changed since then. The Journal has been in almost constant development, growing and evolving from the feedback of the many, many incredible users who have contacted me over the years, sending in suggestions and bug reports and wish lists. With The Journal 7, I hope to have granted more than a few wishes, including some of my own.

The Journal 7’s new features:

  • Search anywhere! See lightning-fast search results in any category. Search results update as you type. Plus, in-entry searching has been made even better, making it easier to see search terms and navigate between them.
  • Search everything! The new, improved Search Entries shows you search results as you type, and allows you to easily add or remove entire categories from your search. Plus, you can now save your searches.
  • More word-processing power! Format your text with new, more powerful styles, including many new options at the paragraph and character levels. Use typographical quotes and apostrophes (AKA “curly quotes”). View two entries at once with split-screen editing. Shut out the world and focus on your writing with the new distraction-free, full-screen editing mode. Search-and-replace within all entries of a category. Save and load DocX files.
  • More flexible user interface! Display your categories as a tree or nested tabs. Color-code your categories. Sort your loose-leaf entries by name, date created, or even last date updated. Fully customize menus, toolbars, and even command hot-keys.
  • Word clouds! See word clouds for your categories based on your entry text or on the topics you have assigned to your entries.
  • Better integration with Windows 8 (and whatever comes next)!
  • New visual themes! The Journal 7 includes a new set of visual themes and a more cohesive look-and-feel (but you can still use the old skins, if you want).
  • Improved security! With salted passwords and a new layer of encryption, The Journal 7 keeps your entries safer than ever.
  • Recover accidentally deleted entries!
  • Streamlined backup, restore, and upgrading!

v7.0.0.1099 – Released 5 December 2017
v7.0.0.1095 – Released 4 September 2017
v7.0.0.1091 – Released 14 August 2017
v7.0.0.1089 – Released 7 August 2017
v7.0.0.1077 – Released 20 February 2017
v7.0.0.1073 – Released 1 November 2016
v7.0.0.1065 – Released 3 October 2016
v7.0.0.1057 – Released 29 August 2016
v7.0.0.1045 – Released 8 August 2016
v7.0.0.1031 – Released 25 July 2016
v7.0.0.1007 – Released 16 May 2016
v7.0.0.987 – Released 7 March 2016
v7.0.0.969 – Released 1 February 2016
v7.0.0.951 – Released 16 December 2015
v7.0.0.945 – Released 20 October 2015
v7.0.0.935 – Released 14 September 2015
v7.0.0.923 – Released 11 August 2015
v7.0.0.917 – Released 27 July 2015
v7.0.0.903- Released 1 June 2015
v7.0.0.897 – Released 11 May 2015
v7 ( – Released 24 April 2015

The Journal 6

Released 9 July 2012

June 2012: My mission statement for The Journal 6 was: “The Journal, Even Better!” I wanted to make The Journal easier to use, while also adding some powerful new features like synchronizing and indexed text searching. Work on The Journal 6 began in June 2011 while my wife and I were waiting for our 3rd child to arrive. He was late, but was eventually induced to make his appearance. Which appearance then seriously slowed The Journal 6 development for a while. 🙂

The Journal 6 new features:

  • Lightning-fast searches! Even if you have thousands of entries in hundreds of categories, searching them is fast and easy.
  • Synchronize multiple copies of The Journal! Have The Journal on your laptop at work and your desktop at home? Keeping them in sync is easier than ever. You can sync from another Journal Volume, a backup file, or any of The Journal’s export files.
  • Synchronize The Journal with your mobile- and tablet-based software! Import your entries and notes from such products as EverNote, Penzu, and more. The Journal also supports exporting to the Xml-based ATOM publishing format which can be imported by other products.
  • Easily use The Journal with automatic backup/sync-ing software! The Journal’s new, single-file database configuration is faster and uses less space on your hard drive or USB/Flash drive, and makes it much easier to use The Journal with products like DropBox.
  • More!
    • Improved printing, exporting, and importing!
    • New Entry Report Wizard (on the Tools menu), with new and improved reports!
    • Improved topic support and reporting!
    • Improved international character support, including Insert Symbol (on the Insert menu)!
    • More options for categories, including specifying the day the week starts and sorting options for loose-leaf entries.
    • New entry editor options like hot-linking images, a running word count on the status bar, format painter, and improved text highlighting.

v6.0.0.779 – Released 21 October 2014
v6.0.0.773 – Released 15 September 2014
v6.0.0.767 – Released 5 August 2014
v6.0.0.765 – Released 4 August 2014
v6.0.0.759 – Released 30 June 2014
v6.0.0.751 – Released 2 June 2014
v6.0.0.743 – Released 31 March 2014
v6.0.0.739 – Released 3 February 2014
v6.0.0.727 – Released 6 January 2014
v6.0.0.721 – Released 4 December 2013
v6.0.0.719 – Released 4 November 2013
v6.0.0.709 – Released 3 October 2013
v6.0.0.705 – Released 27 August 2013
v6.0.0.693 – Released 1 August 2013
v6.0.0.691 – Released 10 June 2013
v6.0.0.675 – Released 9 April 2013
v6.0.0.669 – Released 12 February 2013
v6.0.0.657 – Released 11 December 2012
v6.0.0.635 – Released 7 November 2012
v6.0.0.621 – Released 26 September 2012
v6.0.0.609 – Released 6 August 2012
v6.0.0.597 – Released 18 July 2012
v6 (v6.0.0.589) – Released 9 July 2012

The Journal 5.1

December 2009: The Journal 5.1 is a feature update and bug-fix of The Journal 5. Work on The Journal 5.1 began in late October 2009. My goal for The Journal 5.1 was to add some of the features that had been planned for the initial release of The Journal 5 but, due to time constraints, had been put off to the future.

The Journal 5.1 fixes some bugs (see the list below), updates a few third-party components, and adds some significant new features:

  • Improvements to skinning and more new skins! Many of the skins have been updated, including The Journal’s default skin (BlueBrilliant). The new skins are: BlueBrilliant_Ext, Charm_Ext, Charm2, Office2010 (multiple skins), and SnowLeopard.
  • New toolbar icons for a number of commands, plus the option to use The Journal 4’s icons for toolbars, menus and the entry tree.
  • Localization support – As new language translations of The Journal become available, they will be added.
  • Improvements for using The Journal over a network with multiple simultaneous users.
  • View your Outlook calendar reminders in The Journal!
  • Support for “Quick Blogcast” blog tool and new blog posting options.
  • And, finally, you can wrap text around images in your entries!

v5.1.0.497 – Released 11 April 2012
v5.1.0.489 – Released 14 February 2012
v5.1.0.481 – Released 14 November 2011
v5.1.0.469 – Released 8 August 2011
v5.1.0.461 – Released 6 June 2011
v5.1.0.453 – Released 24 January 2011
v5.1.0.451 – Released 27 December 2010
v5.1.0.435 – Released 4 October 2010
v5.1.0.427 – Released 10 May 2010
v5.1.0.417 – Released 3 March 2010
v5.1.0.409 – Released 27 January 2010
v5.1.0.407 – Released 25 January 2010
v5.1 (v5.1.0.393) – Released 15 December 2009

The Journal 5

July 2009: My plan for The Journal 5, which began development in September 2007, can be summed up as “The Journal Even Better”. I wanted to improve all the major parts of The Journal–the database, the internal data structures, the user interface–and provide more support for international users. Plus I wanted to offer additional category and entry options, more reports and other tools, and, finally, to offer a selection of “skins” for the user interface.

I think I achieved most of that–even if it took a bit longer than I expected.

In short, The Journal 5 is an inside-out redesign of The Journal, preserving all the great journaling and writing features that have accumulated over the years and adding some cool new features and capabilities.

v5.0.0.367 – Released 5 October 2009
v5.0.0.359 – Released 21 September 2009
v5.0.0.355 – Released 9 September 2009
v5.0.0.347 – Released 31 August 2009
v5.0 (v5.0.0.341) – Released 26 August 2009

The Journal 4.1

(March 2006 – August 2009)

March 2006: Though not a major upgrade like the one from v3 to v4, The Journal 4.1 is still a significant step forward. Reminders & Tasks have now been added to The Journal, supplying whole new ways you can use The Journal to organize your life and life’s work. Set reminders for daily tasks, monthly appointments, special days and anniversaries, and more! And with the new entry locking features for shared categories, The Journal edges closer to becoming a true multi-user, maybe even a collaborative, platform. I look forward to building on all of the 4.1 additions and changes as The Journal continues to grow.

August 2007: The last major new feature added to The Journal 4.1 was the option to have multiple entries on a given date. Such an obvious feature (in retrospect), and yet added so late. I’m always surprised by how The Journal continues to evolve.

v4.1.0.253 – Released 5 February 2008
v4.1.0.247 – Released 10 December 2007
v4.1.0.241 – Released 15 October 2007
v4.1.0.239 – Released 9 October 2007
v4.1.0.237 – Released 4 September 2007
v4.1.0.231 – Released 13 June 2007
v4.1.0.229 – Released 11 June 2007
v4.1.0.219 – Released 8 May 2007
v4.1.0.213 – Released 23 April 2007
v4.1.0.207 – Released 19 February 2007
v4.1.0.195 – Released 4 December 2006
v4.1.0.189 – Released 2 October 2006
v4.1.0.181 – Released 12 June 2006
v4.1.0.177 – Released 26 April 2006
v4.1.0.175 – Released 17 April 2006

The Journal 4

(November 2004 – March 2006)

August 2004: Though the story of The Journal 4 lacks the drama of The Journal 3’s grueling development period, it’s an important upgrade nonetheless. Built on the foundation created in v3, v4 takes The Journal to new levels of power and ease of use.

Work on The Journal 4 began in December 2003, with early efforts centered on switching from using the Windows Rich Text Common Control to the very powerful TRichView components created by Sergey Tkachenko. This was a huge change, both in source code and in philosophy, because The Journal was originally built around the rich text edit, and probably would not have existed except for that feature of Windows 95. After years spent tweaking and cajoling (and cursing) the rich text edit to get it to do things that Microsoft probably never meant for it to do, I suffered a few withdrawals. However, this one change, by itself, made possible a large portion of The Journal 4’s new features, including background images for entries, print preview, tables, and on and on. So I’m past the withdrawals now, and not looking back.

With the new entry editor in place, I shifted to adding numerous other features that users have asked for over the years, such as n-depth category nesting, user-created Calendar Charms, and daily/weekly reporting. Beyond user requests, there were other extensions that I wanted to make, such as the ability to install and run The Journal on read-only CDROM’s, that would make The Journal more stable overall and useful in new arenas.

By late August 2004, I had implemented the last of the planned additions and on 1 September I handed The Journal 4 over to a small group of testers. There’s nothing like user testing to help smooth out the new interface and add the necessary polish to the new features–and point out the obvious features and extensions you somehow forgot.

The Journal 4 added:

  • A more modern look-and-feel, that tracked Windows XP themes
  • Improved editing capabilities, including:
    • Background images for entries
    • Improved image handling (faster saving and loading, resizing, and more)
    • Tables
    • More powerful and more flexible text styles
    • Paragraph borders and background colors
    • Improved bullets and numbering
    • Outline mode
    • HTML importing and improved HTML exporting
    • Improved auto-replace, supporting both formatted and unformatted text
    • Assigning topics to blocks of text within an entry
  • Improved printing, including print preview
  • Improved searching, with:
    • Google-like results presentation, with excerpts of found text and links to the found entries
    • Search text highlighting in found entries
    • Date range limiting for standard categories
    • Searching by topic, or by image description
  • Daily/weekly/etc “reporting” for standard categories, with printing
  • Support for user-created Calendar Charms and entry background images
  • Improved blog support, with posting of images (if the blog supports posting images)
  • Web page “archiving” within entries
  • Improved arranging of loose-leaf entries and categories
  • Improved category “nesting”, so you can have sub-categories of sub-categories of sub-categories of…
  • New category options likes “Read Only” and “Folder Only”
  • The ability to install and run The Journal on self-contained, removable media, like a USB flash drive or CDROM
  • Improved database speed and security

v4.0.0.163 – Released 6 December 2005
v4.0.0.161 – Released 24 October 2005
v4.0.0.157 – Released 26 September 2005
v4.0.0.153 – Released 29 August 2005
v4.0.0.147 – Released 20 July 2005
v4.0.0.145 – Released 13 July 2005
v4.0.0.141 – Released 11 April 2005
v4.0.0.137 – Released 2 February 2005
v4.0.0.135 – Released 24 January 2005
v4.0.0.133 – Released 29 December 2004
v4.0.0.127 – Released 8 December 2004
v4.0.0.123 – Released 2 December 2004
v4.0 – Released 29 November 2004

The Journal 3

(November 2001 – November 2004)

(From November 2001): The Journal 3 is a complete re-design and re-write of The Journal, incorporating years of accumulated feedback and suggestions. Since The Journal was first released in 1996, users have sent in their suggestions for features and extensions. As much as possible, these suggestions were incorporated. But some suggestions were beyond what the original design of The Journal could tolerate. There was only so far that The Journal’s feature set could be stretched without starting over from scratch.

Begun in the summer of 1999, development on The Journal 3 proceeded slower than expected. These initial delays were caused by several factors. I was (and still am) co-owner of another software company (Samu Games, and other projects came up that stalled the development of The Journal 3. Plus there was the ever-present need to support the current version of The Journal. By the end of 1999, only The Journal 3’s new database configuration was completed.

In 2000, two major projects with Samu Games prevented significant work on The Journal 3. The Journal 2.3 was released in early 2000, and The Journal 2.4 was begun in the fall of the year. Though the 2.3 release was a relatively straightforward update of The Journal 2.2. The 2.4 release, however, incorporated some of the features that had been designed for The Journal 3. New word processing features (like numbered lists and multi-level undo), improved image handling, and especially the new export/import format were all from work done for The Journal 3.

Most of the work on The Journal 3 that occurred during 2000 was on the new user interface. There was a lot of experimentation with new layouts, new configurations, and new ways of representing the categories and entries in the database. Some of it worked, and was kept. A lot of it, though, proved “iffy at best” and was discarded (or turned into a “user preference”, default off).

In March 2001, following the release of The Journal 2.4, I realized that I had spent too much time on “research and development”. If I expected to release The Journal 3 in this lifetime, I was going to have to stop thinking up new features to add and experiment with. So the feature set of The Journal 3 was “frozen”, and I began working on getting The Journal 3 done.

Interestingly enough, while The Journal 3 already sported quite a few features that The Journal 2.x would never be able to duplicate, The Journal 2.x had many more features that had not yet been implemented in The Journal 3. So to get The Journal 3 “done” I had to get all of the existing 2.x features working in the new version. Everything from simple options like “minimize to system tray” to more complex features like entry templates had yet to be added to The Journal 3.

This turned out to be the single largest effort in the development of The Journal 3. The Journal had accumulated quite a few features in its 5+ years, and re-doing them for The Journal 3 proved to take more time than I estimated. In August 2001, 6 months later, the last of the 2.x feature set was finally added to The Journal 3.

In September 2001, The Journal 3 was handed over to a small number of volunteers to see how it would stand up. With their help, most of the bugs and issues were found and either fixed or resolved. The last bit of testing and polishing occurred when The Journal 3 “pre-release” was made available in mid-November.

The Journal has already grown beyond my original vision for the project. I’m excited to see what new directions the product will head in the future.

2004 Afternote: The Journal grew significantly after the initial release of v3. Here’s a list of the major improvements and features added to The Journal from November 2001 to October 2004:

  • Improved printing
  • Improved “Search Entries…”
  • Improved entry navigation
  • Improved entry templates
  • Improved initial defaults for new users
  • Improved entry export and import
  • Improved user interface, including lots of new hot-keys
  • Improved entry links and internet links
  • Improved database maintenance
  • Improved documentation
  • Calendar Charms
  • Add-on package support
  • MemoryGrabber add-on package
  • Writing Prompts 1 add-on package
  • Blog support

v3.0.0.71 -Released 22 September 2004
v3.0.0.67 -Released 13 July 2004
v3.0.0.65 -Released 13 April 2004
v3.0.0.63 -Released 6 April 2004
v3.0.0.61 -Released 10 February 2004
v3.0.0.59 -Released 29 December 2003
v3.0.0.57 -Released 15 December 2003
v3.0.0.51 -Released 6 October 2003
v3.0.0.49 -Released 15 July 2003
v3.0.0.47 -Released 9 July 2003
v3.0.0.45 -Released 10 April 2003
v3.0.0.43 -Released 24 February 2003
v3.0.0.41 -Released 9 December 2002
v3.0.0.39 -Released 26 August 2002
v3.0.0.35 -Released 2 April 2002
v3.0.0.33 -Released 18 February 2002
v3.0.0.31 -Released 12 February 2002
v3.0.0.27 -Released 6 February 2002
v3.0.0.25 -Released 4 February 2002
v3.0.0.23 -Released 7 January 2002
v3.0.0.21 -Released 17 December 2001
v3.0.0.19 -Released 3 December 2001
v3.0 -Released 28 November 2001

The Journal 2

(September 1998 – October 2001)

The Journal 2.0, released in late September, 1998, built on the feature set that had been finalized in the 1.51 release. More word-processing and security features were added, and database maintenance and stability was greatly enhanced. Throughout the 2.x series of releases, The Journal continued to mature, though not at the same pace as before. Refinement and extension replaced a headlong rush to add new features. The 2.4 release of The Journal, coming nearly a year after the previous release, was the most significant of the 2.x updates after 2.0.

v2.43 – Released September 28 2001.
v2.42 – Released August 20 2001.
v2.41 – Released April 16 2001.
v2.40 – Released February 9 2001.
v2.30 – Released April 7 2000.
v2.20 – Released December 6 1999.
v2.11 – Released June 21 1999.
v2.10 – Released April 5 1999.
v2.02 – Released February 1 1999.
v2.01 – Released November 11 1998.
v2.00 – Released September 30 1998.

The Journal 1

(October 1996 – August 1998)

v1.30 was the first shareware release of The Journal, made available in October, 1996. This was a period of expanding features for The Journal. Hardly a month went by without a new release coming out with more features–and bug-fixes for previously added features. This “growth spurt” period went on for nearly a year before finally slowing down.

With the release of The Journal 1.5 in January, 1998, The Journal became a mature software product.

v1.51 – Released February 20 1998.
v1.50 – Released January 30 1998.
v1.44 – Released December 12 1997.
v1.43 – Released September 26 1997
v1.42 – Released July 19 1997
v1.41 – Released July 1 1997
v1.40 – Released June 28 1997
v1.39 – Released June 7 1997
v1.38 – Released March 23 1997
v1.37 – Released February 9 1997
v1.36 – Released January 12 1997
v1.35 – Released December 29 1996
v1.34 – Released December 13 1996
v1.33 – Released November 25 1996
v1.32 – Released November 15 1996
v1.31 – Released October 14 1996
v1.30 – First Shareware Release October 11 1996

The Journal 1 – The Freeware Days

(June-September 1996)

The Journal started out as a quick project, mostly as a way to learn how to use Delphi. Fittingly, most of the original users of The Journal were other Delphi programmers who downloaded it from the various “Made in Delphi” web pages. Feedback from these and other users prompted me to extend The Journal significantly, and release it as shareware.

v1.21 – Released August 12 1996
v1.20 – Released August 9 1996
v1.1 – Released July 8 1996
v1.0 – Initial Release. June 18 1996