The problem of how to enforce licensing is a big one and one that certainly deserves our attention. Many are trying new methods to license their products. This is a short story about my experience with a fantastic program with an interesting approach to the problem.

With the retina screen there are only certain apps that render text clearly. I was making heavy use of TextWrangler but wanted something that looked cleaner. I spent some time looking around and settled with Sublime Text 2, it’s a clean editor that rendered text well on the retina display.

I use the unregistered version, I didn’t want to buy it before testing it out (a major flaw with the mac app store I hasten to add). It’s great, perfect even for my rails projects. There is a sidebar that has allows for project folders and each open file has tabs along the top. There are many different colorings and some great little editing tools. However the best thing about the software was the a customer support response.

I should first note my experiences with other developers. I contacted Guided Ways and various other developers only to be brushed off about a student license. In some ways this is fine, smaller developers often only have one license type. With Sublime Text though they were quite happy let me continue using the trial for the time being.

Thanks for your interest in Sublime Text. Unfortunately, there are no student discounts available, but since the current version does not have a time limit, please feel free to continue using it until you are able to make a purchase.

While they still didn’t have a student license this response and the freedom of an unlimited trail made me think much more of the program and company. It has almost guaranteed that I will purchase the program in the near future. I don’t think this is a fix for every developer with every app but it’s certainly a method that worked here. I wonder if there will ever be a complete answer to the digital licensing issue.