Apps, Apps, Every Where
Water, water, every where,
Nor any drop to drink.
— Samuel Taylor Coleridge, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner
With over 600k apps in the App Store, why do so many apps I use drive me crazy? I spend most of my time in amazing apps like Tweetbot and Flipboard, but many simple, single task apps make iOS feel like death by a thousand papercuts.
The past few months App Cubby has been bogged down. Building a truly great app takes months and months of work. Since I don’t code or design, creating a truly great app also requires lots of cash. I started work on a new version of Gas Cubby back in October of 2011, but have had to work on it in fits and starts as finances and other constraints allowed.
To keep costs down and productivity up, I’ve done several apps in partnership with developer friends. It’s been great to be able to launch amazing, polished apps like Tweet Speaker, but those take even longer when we can only work part time on a project. And that’s where we’re at with the new version of Launch Center. It’s coming along quite well, but we just finished the first 80% and still have the next 80% staring back at us.
So, with App Cubby’s bigger projects bogged down, I decided to work on a few smaller apps over the summer — single task apps that scratch my own personal itch.
Don’t expect frequent updates.
Don’t expect lots of new features.
Don’t expect every possible use-case to be covered.
Expect simple, focused, polished apps that do one thing amazingly well and perfectly scratch my own itch, not necessarily yours.
The first such app is Timer.
Over the past few years I’ve downloaded 20+ iOS timer apps and keep coming back to Apple’s own clock app. It’s better than most timer apps, but spinning the dial to set the time just drives me nuts.
I’ll leave the in-depth discussion to past and future posts, but suffice it to say — HUGE buttons are incredibly well suited to quickly taking action on touchscreen devices. For all the love complex, nebulous gestures have gotten in recent months, tapping a HUGE button is still the ultimate — and often overlooked — gesture.
Illustration from Tapworthy by Josh Clark
So that’s Timer in a nutshell. Twelve HUGE buttons designed to scratch my own itch.
I hope it scratches yours as well.