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An Interview With an App Designer

Questionnaire

  1. What challenges does an app designer normally face?
  2. Are there any fears or concerns when working on a new project?
  3. How has the arrival of free Internet access changed the usual app designer’s referral tasks?
  4. What happens with mobile applications today?
  5. What is the best way to adapt to the trends of a modern app design?
  6. Which factors determine an app success rate?
  7. What principles should an app designer stick to when working in a team?
  8. What should an app designer begin with when working on a new project?
  9. Are there any goals to guide a new project?
  10. What are the tips to always stay in the forefront and up-to-date?

Reflections

The role of software applications is difficult to underestimate in the life of modern society. Things like smartphones, tablets, and laptops have turned out to be an integral part of human activities, either related to work or entertainment. It has become an accepted norm to view individuals using their mobile devices in the streets, transport, and public areas, for those can deal with nearly any task a person might have and provide access to data regardless of place and time.

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Normally, people download applications according to their needs and working specifics. As Gardner and Davis indicate in their book, “apps like SketchBook, Brushes, ArtStudio, Procreate, and ArtRage allows artists to draw, sketch, and paint using their smartphone or tablet” (120). It is known that the mentioned apps represent only a small group of software applications that are currently available for general usage. App designers introduce new projects to software developing companies on, a practical, daily basis. Of course, in the times when apps have flooded the market and covered a wide variety of social spheres, introducing something unique and generally recognized turns out to be a matter of high-level creativity and professionalism. Naturally, it creates a whole number of challenges for a successful app designer and drives him/her to unveil all of the available potentials.

Key Questions and Answers

The secrets of a successful app design predominantly lie in a designer’s ability to orientate in modern trends and quickly cope with acquired data. Guello stresses, “there’s more to designing mobile apps than meets the eye. The task requires a deep knowledge of devices” (par. 1). As one, probably, knows, the range of mobile appliances gets wider with every next day. Thus, it forces everyone involved in the process of app development to skip a standard way of thinking and take an individual approach to every single platform and gadget available on the market.

What Challenges an App Designer Normally Faces?

Whenever it comes to developing mobile applications, there are always challenges like learning new things, studying users’ needs, skipping the outlived ideas, and attempting to surprise a user. If one works on an educational application, the concept requires providing an intuitive interface and giving exhaustive information on a topic. As the researchers state, students tend to conceptualize learning applications as a game (Israel et al. 61-62). Naturally, learning a new material flows faster in the form of gameplay.

Are There Any Fears or Concerns When Working on a New Project?

There are always concerns about how an application will be accepted by the audience, how functional it will be, and whether it will be optimized for the needs of a specific platform. Competition is tense on the app market, so no mistakes are allowed. This statement makes particular sense when working on a “medium with unprecedented interactions”, requiring maximum focus (Guello par. 3).

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How Has the Arrival of Free Internet Access Changed the Usual App Designer’s Referral Tasks?

Before the unlimited access to the Internet arrived, designers were involved in printing mostly (Guello par. 5). Now they face a whole variety of tasks that are, in the majority of cases, refer to developing software for interactive media. The presence of various platforms makes those tasks even more complex.

What Happens with Mobile Applications Today?

People got accustomed to taking their smartphones everywhere with them and finding information regardless of their geographical location. With regards to this fact, current mobile applications tend to look more like mini-websites, providing their users with maximum convenience and easy-to-follow functions. Although they lack informativity in comparison to desktop applications, these apps still enjoy wide popularity among users of portable devices.

What is the Best Way to Adapt to the Trends of a Modern App Design?

Adapting to the trends of modern design is impossible without considering such factors as users’ needs and technology innovations. A successful app designer always has a couple of pre-cast ideas and can provide a quick sketch at any time, even without any computer at hand. Also, he aims at conquering various platforms, e.g. iOS, Android, Windows Phone, instead of just one particular system (Guello).

Which Factors Determine an App Success Rate?

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To provide users with a functional and user-friendly application designers and programmers apply for one key principle – they work as a single unit, not as separate divisions. They use identical tools, refer to similar programming languages, and have access the same sources of information. Such an approach allows them to view a matter from a variety of sides and, thus, succeed on the market.

What Principles Should an App Designer Stick to when Working in a Team?

One should realize that developers are allies and not foes. A successful app designer learns to use the same tools his colleagues do and is not afraid of asking questions. Also, his/her progress in work is supposed to be a bit faster than that of programmers.

What Should an App Designer Begin with when Working on a New Project?

The best thing to start with is to draw a prototype. One can make a picture of it then and see how it is suited for smartphone needs, what enhancements need to be made, etc. Any creative work begins with a draft.

Are there Any Goals to Guide a New Project?

When app designer works on a medium, he aims at its further evolution. There is no such concept as a finished project; there are always things to improve/update. User’s approval is a primary goal one is supposed to set forward. Therefore, he/she needs to be ready to continue working on a project at any time.

What Are the Tips to Always Stay Up-to-date?

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The only possible tip is to change a conventional way of thinking and start considering the market’s rules. For that purpose, one never stops learning the new trends and users’ requirements.

Summarizing all that was said above, one may state that work of an app designer is, to a higher extent, correlated with bringing society exactly what it requires – functional and easy-to-follow applications for their portable devices. The tendency to use mobile apps regardless of place and time and a desire to have access to tons of information through a couple of touches still keep a profession relevance high. However, to meet public’s expectations, one needs to demonstrate all the available potential and boast versatility of a thinking manner.

Works Cited

Israel, Maya, et al. “Fifth Graders as App Designers: How Diverse Learners Conceptualize Educational Apps.” Journal of Research on Technology in Education, vol. 46, no. 1, 2013, pp. 53-80.

Gardner, Howard, and Katie Davis. The App Generation: How Today’s Youth Navigate Identity, Intimacy, and Imagination in a Digital World. Yale University Press, 2013.

Guello, Javier. “How to Think Like an App Designer.” Smashing Magazine, 2015, Web.

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