Monday, 21 March 2011

2D tool palette in Androidify and Thinking Space

Google's Androidify app has an interesting tool palette to access all the possible options for your androidified avatar.

Bottom of the screen has a scrollable tool category palette that can be scrolled from left to right. Selected component is always the leftmost item and to highlight it the selected one is colored while other items are greyscale.

On the left side of the screen is the second level of the tool palette showing individual tools on the selected category.




Thinking Space app uses the same 2D palette. In fact they seem to use exactly the same code. I have no information if this app's ui was updated to it's latest version before Google released their Androidify so I cannot say which one was first. I have not found the source code for creating this palette structure but I will keep looking.

If someone has information where this source code can be found please leave a comment!



Dwell is a very beautiful app that uses an interesting navigation panel. This panel is somewhat functionally similar to the 2D palette above. Left side of the screen is a looping panel that can be dragged up or down by the user. Second item from the top is always the selected one. It is highlighted with corresponding screen color.  Whenever the panel is dragged the selection is changed. User can also tap on any of the icons which will cause the panel to scroll so that the tapped icon is moved to the selected position. 

I recommend downloading the dwell app. It is one of the more beautiful and smooth apps I've yet encountered. We definitely need more this well designed apps for Android.



Conclusion

I find both these interaction models interesting but not deserving a pattern status quite yet. I would not be surprised if Google would mention this palette as one of their new patterns in this year's Google I/O but we will see. Let's see how applications adopt these models.