Mobile applications are part of our daily life at this point. As the task of this project is to create an app prototype, I had to do plentiful research into the subject. Although I am an avid user of mobile apps such as Facebook, Instagram and Youtube, I don’t exactly pose the know-how of how to really make an app that is a)interesting b)good-looking c)has purpose and context.
To get a better understanding of how this works, I firstly thoroughly investigated the layouts and possibilities of some of the applications I have on my own smartphone. First thing I noticed – most of them use headers and footers with different features planted in them. For example, in the Facebook app you have the options to take a photo, do a search or go straight to messenger all in the header; in the footer you can view your feed, pending friend requests, the market place, notifications and the menu bar which leads to other locations. Youtube has a similar approach. Both applications employ an endless scroll feature.
The important thing to note here is that these applications are based on user-generated content, and not stuff that the makers of the application have posted – this is VERY different from my application which is meant to be more of a database/informational/educational application that would only have content made by myself and no user-generated content, which means I can’t really use an endless-scroll feature. Firstly because it would have to end after about 10-20 relevant things on the one page, and secondly because the screens I would design would be EXTREMELY long and lose some of their quality once transferred into Marvel app.
Most applications that do not hold onto user-generated content are either game applications or applications that make the user generate their own content, i.e. platforms to keep notes, personal goals or similar things. This is also not exactly related to what I am doing.
So I took a look at some history-related applications. It’s safe to say that a fair amount of them are quite badly done, meaning the design is all over the place, the colours are quite muddy and not pleasing. There aren’t many historical apps out there that are enticing. I suppose my journey now is to make one that is at least half-way decent.