Author - macOS minimal word processor with integrated concept map…

New to me, and haven’t seen it mentioned elsewhere (apologies if anyone else has already posted about it). Haven’t experimented with it myself— can’t see how it might mesh with my existing workflow— but I figure someone else might find it useful. Free download on the Mac app store, with a subscription or lifetime purchase to enable exports.

I like the look of the concept mapping. Reminiscent of Scapple, with some smart details around managing links between items and displaying references.

Also from the same company, a minimal PDF reader app (check the site for details).


Gotta love the effective use of a serif typeface.

Looks neat. I wonder if it can export to .docx…* most of my papers start in Word, because collaboration, so I end up doing most of my writing there. It would be nice to do the bulk of my writing in a sleeker app.

* I’ll check this myself when I get to my desk and report back.

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It’s been a while since using Author, but IIRC export is a paid upgrade.


From the about pane:

Primary Patron
Vint Cerf

That’s great. The current version is only 6.8 and the automatic dynamic linking for 7.0 isn’t in place yet, so I’ve made a note to check back.

I think I’d like to introduce this app to my older children. Dynamic view seems like the right level of abstraction for them to help them write longer and more detailed papers. I also want to teach them to make citations before they need to. $45 lifetime seems reasonable for the feature set.


As noted by the OP… :wink:

Did a little further digging, and it seems that is the new Seems there was once an iPad version of Author, and a Liquid tool that sounds like a Alfred/Launchbar-esque utility, albeit with a more focused feature-set. Wondering if you used it back in the days…?

While it doesn’t suit my workflow at the moment, I appreciate the thinking behind the suite. Frode (lead developer?) is speaking here on Friday in a series of presentations about the value of interchange and shared standards for tools for thought and knowledge management…

Yes, I followed Frode’s work for a while, but the apps didn’t catch on with me. It seemed like an island and I didn’t want to use it for real work. There’s another app, Reader, for reading PDFs.

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Hope you liked it.

Yes, you can export to .dox with the In-App Upgrade.
Please feel free to email me with any questions:


Welcome to the MPU forums!

Author is really neat. Magic margins are amazing, and the integrated definitions/concept mapping tools seem very useful.

I’m still figuring it if I’ll use it. Typically I write in a notes app first, then jump to Word for finishing/sharing. I’m not sure yet if I want to add a middle ground, especially since Author helps most with the early stages of writing. We’ll see!

Thanks for the kind words! How are you getting on fitting Author into your workflow?

Hi, Author does export PDF with academic formatting, though maybe you saw it before that. This is how it fits into workflows, especially for students. :slight_smile:

And we are working on a new iPad version of Reader now, which is pretty exciting for us :slight_smile:

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This is interesting news… Looking forward to it.

Any plans for updates to Author on iOS?

Haven’t had the chance yet! What I said above still applies. I’m not sure if using Author between exploring ideas in my notes and putting a paper in Word for collaboration will provide enough benefits. But I’ll keep thinking on it.