Sunday, April 21, 2013

Show Me More

In a return glimpse at possible designs this week, we take a look at ways of displaying more information to the user, as outlined by 4ourth Mobile Design in the chapter "Revealing More Information". The common theme behind this section is revealing additional information on the same screen where the user is already working rather than taking the user to a new screen. This can be done in several ways. The first is a simple pop-up. Apple uses this design a lot to confirm actions before proceeding. Here, the app Bump uses a pop-up menu, which populates the screen from the bottom:

Another popular method is to employ a windowshade concept where information spreads, revealing information in a way that it seems as though the window shades have been drawn, granting access to information previously hidden behind them. Here are two examples of the pattern from the iPhone's Weather app as well as their home screen menu:
Home Screen
Unfortunately, as you can see, sometimes the revealing of information distorts an otherwise adorable photo. Maybe it would be better to employ this as a pop-up, thus covering a portion of a photo rather than slicing it into pieces. What do you think?


  1. I have very mixed feelings about those split screen things from apple. Ultimately I like having been able to pull my many apps into folders, but then I get irritated about having to go through multiple screens to get to something I want. I'm not so worried about splitting the background picture. I'd like some way to make one of the elements a default, have the whole system re-organize the location of things by frequency of use. As for the split versus the pop-up I guess I'm not so bothered ... superficially the pop-up feels restricted by a lack of icons, although I know they can be added ...

  2. I'm with you - I go back and forth between having a gazillion icons plastered all over my screen and stuffing everything into folders to make it all look clean. I'm looking forward to even more intricate voice-activation so I can just say "open this program" and it searches through it all for me :)