What would a series of posts about app user interface be without a post focused on Clear. There has always been some hype around developing the best to-do applications. Strangely enough there was always debate associated with this category of mobile apps. Proponents in the GTD world always had their favorite apps that partner with their own GTD philosophy. Impending are the developers behind the Clear app. Apparent;y they worked with Realmac Software to release this app. There was quite a bit of hype surrounding this app (for good reason). The developers wanted to design a to-do app that had limited functionality. The by-product of this mindset is usually intense focus on the intention of the app. This focus increases the potential of the app being successful.
When I tell people about Clear, I usually don't start off telling them about it's features, rather I begin mentioning what this app does NOT do.
Clear's list of features not included
- doesn't have alarms or reminders
- doesn't have the ability to add reoccurring tasks
- doesn't sync with iCloud or other devices or applications
- doesn't have geofencing
- doesn't allow to-do list sharing
- is not free
If you aren't engrossed and up to speed on the latest user interface trends and design patterns you might not understand the impact an app like Clear has had on the industry. Clear has acutally become an adjective that designers have started using to describe apps that have limited functionality, extreme focus and innovative interfaces. The Impending design team used several innovative solutions to solve many of the UX/UI problems that plague numerous of the GTD applications. The most notable innovation that Clear exhibits is the use of mulit-touch gestures (pinch, pull, swipe and tap) to interact with your lists. The use of these gestures means the interface is not dependent on traditional GUI elements like forms, checkboxes, radio, switches and buttons. The outcome of the UI is complex minimalism.
I love the Clear app in itself but I am also so stoked about Clear's innovation and the impact it is already having in the world of UI design.
Clear also provides many wonderful themes for your to-do environment. Impending also adds a tiny bit of gaming and cross promotion to obtain some of these themes.