Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Sophocles again

Sophocles users, including myself, are still trying to find out what's going on with the screenwriting software company. There's some discussion of this at the Done Deal forum. The Sophocles website has disappeared. The domain, however, remains active until July 1, according to domain records:


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Administrative Contact:
Tim tsheehan@SOPHOCLES.NET
Tim Sheehan
Sheehan Software
3248 Washington St., #2
San Francisco, CA 94115
999 999 9999 fax: 999 999 9999

Technical Contact:
Uzzanti, Tim juan@teamjuanuribe.com
Crystaltech Web Hosting Inc.
6135 N 7th St.
Phoenix, AZ 85014
915-479-5151 fax: 915-585-9400

Record expires on 01-Jul-2008.
Record created on 01-Jul-1999.

I've had cordial communication with Tim in the past but he hasn't replied to a recent email about his company. The email did not get returned, however. One theory is that the company was sold but if so, this is a poor way to do the business of transition (unless it was gobbled up to get rid of it). We may never know what happened.

Meanwhile, I'll keep using the program, a damn good one, until it crashes and I have to use something else.


Anonymous said...

Why would you try to contact the hosting company (ie Crystaltech / Tim Uzzanti) and not the business owner?

I'm guessing that when the site was originally ordered Tim Sheehan selected an option to have the domain name registered by the hosting provider. Thats how the domain name ended up in Tim Uzzanti's name and not Tim Sheehan's.

If you want to find out what happened to the site, I'd recommend contacting the business owner. The hosting company cannot legally give out any information about a customer without a court order.

Anonymous said...

I did contact CrystalTech and was told that the site was taken down due to non-payment.

I'm also betting on the "Sophocles sold to competitor who will bury it" theory.

Charles Deemer said...

I didn't contact C. Where did you get that idea?

I tried to contact Tim because I've dealt with him many times in the past.

Atom said...

I left several messages at the number for Sheehan Software. I think maybe he's in the hospital or perhaps passed on. I don't think he would have sold out, which is a terrible option if the program disappears. He was always nice in our talks.

I do have a big problem. I've been using the beta and it won't let me print at all. I've written everything in this program. What are my best options for automating the conversion process?

Charles Deemer said...

Tim was always straight up and cool with me as well. I hadn't thought of death but it would make sense.

Regarding your scripts, I assume you've explored all exporting and copy/paste options. I remember a student of mine once downloaded the demo, which wouldn't print, but had figured out a way to get it into Word and printed from there. All I can suggest is try everything that occurs to you.

Drew H said...

I am more than willing to help those who need the install file or even need help with exporting, printing, etc... I normally wouldn't be one to step up like this, but do to the nature of the site and Tim just simply disappearing I feel it's only right that if I can help out then indeed I should. If you need help with getting Sophocles so that you can continue your work or anything else please feel free to write me at drew(AT)drewhester.com . Yes just replace (AT) with @ and I will see what I can do.

Thanks everyone!

M. said...

I have done a search at the california secretary of state office. Sophocles Software LLC. comes up as "active". It still shows Tim Sheehan as the owner. This information is updated weekly and if it was sold, perhaps this information would have changed.

Charles Deemer said...

Do a search of the obituaries. I think Tim is no longer with us.

m. said...

I Did search the obituaries. There was no Tim or Timothy Sheehan. Did you come up with something?

I'm thinking it is a possibility he passed away, if indeed his url was not paid and the company is still active. Let's hope he has some friends or family in San Fran! I think if he is no longer with is at least he's laughing in his grave!

JGwinner said...


I'm in the same situation, but I am a software developer. I would like to help out however possible.

I really liked Sophocles - I hear that MM6 has outlining features that are similar. I guess I'll check that out.

I also heard about a software package called Page 2 Stage; it's open source as well.

I'm going to seriously check out Celtx and that. I have in mind some features that would help for Machinima.

== John ==

m. said...

hi jgwinner, please email me at screenwriter0@gmail.com so we can talk further about sophocles.

I AM ONE said...

Thanks to a friend, I've just discovered the perfect replacement, or for all intents and purposes, "upgrade" to Sophocles.

Gentlemen, may I whole heartedly recommend: celtx.

Find Version 1.2 here at: http://www.celtx.com/index.html

Totally free, open source scriptwriting software that is also quite interactive.

It has templates for: film, audio-visual, theatre, audio play, storyboards, comic books/graphic novels, and a text feature.

On the website there is also a new features video with a tutorial, a blog, a support community forum, a How-to Wiki, and something called Project Central where I believe you can posts your projects.

I'm just getting started and will be transferring my Sophocles texts into Celtx this weekend. Just scratching the surface I already see that this software is head and shoulders above any other software out there, from Final Draft down to Sophocles. Once you discover it you'll be wondering how in the world is this free considering all the features and the amazing ease of use. But it is open source and I get the sense from the video that these guys from down in Australia are doing it for the love of it.

Well, I think I've gushed enough. Check it out guys. I think Celtx will make the lamented Sophocles a fond but distant memory.

freezerburn said...

Thanks for the recommendation, but i dislike celtx, and deserve to know what happened to sophocles!

Charles Deemer said...

We all do. But it doesn't look like it's going to happen.

Yankster said...

As luck would have it, Sophocles is still working well on my old laptop. Tried to copy it over to new laptop....no avail. So I copied it to my external hdd...clicked on it on ext hdd...worked fine and gave the same serial number.

When plugging the ext hdd into new laptop....came up with different serial number....thus the key to unlocking it is the user settings.

Was wondering if anyone has windows easy transfer to grab the user settings buried deep in OS?

Most frustrating, is the fact that copy on my old laptop has a serial number that I saved the the email lockcode for, but unfortunately as mentioned above the install file or copied program comes up with a new serial number when plugged into my newest laptop. Any suggestions on how to access the user files on not only XP but also Vista?


Atom said...

I used to have a Sophocles keygen, but I don't think it works with the beta Sophocles. Just so you know I did pay for it and made a lot of suggestions for it's development.

Seriously, the beta Sophocles is a phenomenal product. I loved the new ideas for the modular development of story. I'm currently using Celtx just because I don't want to dump money on another program. It's not the greatest but it's neat for a freebie.

Charles Everett said...

I bought the software about 7 months ago. Now the problem is, is that I can no longer activate my copies on my new desktop. Luckily for me My laptop still has it unlocked. I have wrote about 800 pages worth of material with the program and now I have to save it to word and find new software. I just feel I have been ripped off of $125.

Terry said...

I use Movie Outline. It's excellent. Especially for structuring and organization. Creative Screenwriting Magazine just did a fab review on it.



Anonymous said...

Montage seems to be the newest player on the block. It's quite impressive and puts most the other screenwriting software to shame. Mac only though.

Anonymous said...

Well this just sucks! I've been using Sophocles since '03 and never had any issues w/the company or the software. Hell, I had a hd crash a couple years back and was able to get another download for free. Even downloaded the beta upgrade. Now, after recovering from a serious viral infestation & fixing the problem, I find that I can't the program anymore...sheesh...well at least I got money's worth. Now, I need a program that'll recognize the file extensions and convert, anyone got any suggestions? Movie Maker? Final Draft?

Charles Deemer said...

Send me an email about this. i have an idea.

ianlewis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ianlewis said...

This might help those with legally registered copies of sophocles to reinstall on another computer, provided that you still have access to the activated copy.
This worked for me with sophocles 2007

Do this on the machine which has the activated copy of sophocles:

search in the registry for sheehan.

export the keys (I found 2 sets)

keep the resulting .reg files safe.

on the new machine:
install sophocles.
double click on the reg files and answer yes.

If sophocles was properly registered before, it should be registered on the new install.

good luck

Anonymous said...

I would buy ten copies of this program if it were availible. Alas it has gone. I have repeatedly tried to contact the company but no response.

However, There is a work around to get the program to reactivate/unlock it. A through websearch will get you what you need. Sorry don't have the info off hand but will post when I find it. I just reactivated mine after wiping my computer, works great.

Anonymous said...


Sheehan Software

3248 Washington St, San Francisco, CA 94115-1622

Contact Phone: (415) 776-5079
URL (web address):
Business Category: Prepackaged Software Services in San Francisco, CA
Industry (SIC): Prepackaged Software
Business Information

This company profile is for the private company Sheehan Software , located in San Francisco, CA. Sheehan Software's line of business is prepackaged software services.
Company Name: Sheehan Software
Is This Your Company?
Address: 3248 Washington St, San Francisco, CA 94115-1622 (Map)
Alt Business Name:
Location Type: Single Location
Est. Annual Sales: $79,000
Est. # of Employees: 1
Est. Empl. at Loc.: 1
Year Started: 2000
State of Incorp:
SIC #Code: 7372
Contact's Name: Tim Sheehan
Contact's Title: Owner
NAICS: Software Publishers

Michael said...

Hey everybody. I've looked all over the net for a solution to my problem, but for some reason my copy of Sophocles has stopped allowing me to export or print all of a sudden. This happened tonight and I am WELL into my current script. I've tried restarting, the whole spiel.

JGwinner said...


I can export your script for you, if you need.

I have a laptop that I had activated with the most recent Beta, so I should be able to read your script.

Atom said...

I have a workaround for everybody here if you have scripts trapped in the sophocles format.

Open the unregistered version of the program. Ctrl+A to select all the text. Then put the text into a text file.

Download and install Celtx and use the import feature and select the text file you saved to.

Then go through and fix a few formatting issues and you won't lose your work!

Oh an BTW, Tim Sheehan has done us all very wrong. Make a point to never do this to your customers if you're ever in this position.

Urizen2000 said...

I think Timothy Sheehan was killed.

Atom said...

Looks like cancer and he went home to be with his family. Rest in peace buddy.

Doctor Panacea said...

That is not "our" Tim. The information about the deceased does not fit the person that we are looking for.

I found an obituary through Google in another place, which provided more information about this particular deceased person. He was a project manager for a bank in Ohio, and he reportedly "died suddenly." He had a family there, had gone to school there, and was also currently enrolled in university/college courses at the time of his death.

Survivors listed did not include a brother. Our Tim had a brother at least a few years ago, according to information that I have come across on the internet.

The deceased was only 38. He would have been in high school at the time that our Tim was writing screenplays and starting the DOS version of what became our favorite software application.

In my opinion, it just does not fit, folks.

JGwinner said...

Well, at least we know something - anyone know if he left his software to anyone as part of his will?

I'll volunteer to make it available via open source, OR allow proceeds to go to his family.

I'm going to try to post sometimg on the Tributes site.

Tim created a fantastic writing package, that the others have still barely caught up to. I'd hate to see his legacy disappear.

What's everyone else using?

Erik Maldersen said...

I'm not so sure that's the right Tim Sheehan. The Sophocles Sheehan is San Fransisco-based, isn't he?

Charles Deemer said...

I don't think it's the guy either.

Anonymous said...

He is alive but out of the business as far as I know. I don't know the details of what happened to the company but rest assured Tim is not resting in some dirt somewhere.