Another sudoku app?
David Jacobson, who designed our app icon, introduced me to sudoku several years ago. Like him, I loved the simplicity of the game combined with the mental challenge it provides. I still find it one of the purest game experiences available — a great stress reducer.
Unfortunately, most of the apps out there — and there are dozens — are downright hideous or otherwise gaudy. Jamie and I wanted to develop an app that focused on game play and nothing else. We stripped away all ornamentation, and got thousands of great games from Andrew Stuart. Maybe the best part of all this is I get to play sudoku on my favorite app every day.
- Simple, minimal design
- Thousands of beautiful game layouts
- Four challenging levels
- Light and dark modes
- Helpful hints
- Note mode
- Stat tracker
- Optional floating keypad (iPad)
If you don't know how to play sudoku, we've posted some simple rules here.
Based on a brief recommendation from Marco Arment, I finally gave Weather Line a try and, I have to say, I'm impressed. Prior to this, Yahoo!'s Weather was my go-to app: I really liked its simple, one-screen display, layered information design, and photographic backgrounds.
Unlike Yahoo!'s app, Weather Line has three primary screens: Hourly, Daily and Monthly. The display is ultra minimal, and relies as much on effective information design as numeric data. The result is not dissimilar to a speedometer, where the way the information is displayed provides an instant read, whether you see the actual numbers or not. It's almost visceral.
Weather Line loads quickly, and toggling between views is immediate. The app makes no attempt to "go deep," focusing instead of what matters most (to me, at least): what's the weather like now, and in the next few hours and days?
Yes, I know Weather Line has been around for a while, and I'm late to the game. Nonetheless, it's a great example of the things I strive for in my own work: simplicity, utility, and (hopefully) beauty.
Last week some of my TED colleagues compiled a list of 45 podcast recommendations. This inspired me: here are my Top 12. (Why 12? Because it makes a nice grid, that's why.)
Though there are some great podcast apps out there, my favorite remains Pocket Casts. It's available for iOS, Android, Windows, and it has a Web player to boot, plus a bunch of other nice features, all wrapped in a clean, easy-to-use interface.
Mid-1990s: Make it
Late-1990s: Make it look like this
Early 2000s: Make it look like this on different browsers
Mid-2000s: Make it simpler
Late 2000s: Make it work on phones
Now: Make it do everything