I wasn’t always like this. I was a prudent spender—“Ha!” says my wife, peering over my shoulder—until the day I was seduced (now she’s holding her breath) by a new iPhone app. The irony? The app is an expense tracker… but its interface is so drop-dead gorgeous (luckily my wife has returned to her book) that I can’t resist buying something just to have an excuse to interact with it.
Here is what I like about the app, called Next:
- It only costs $1.99 (already entered that expense!).
- The design is devilishly simple—just an array of icons.
Click on the one that resembles your expense—a cup of coffee
(my Achilles’ heel)—and enter the amount spent.
- The analytics are also simple. One swipe to the right reveals your total expense by category for the week, month or year. One swipe to the left reveals the details of each expense by day.
In fact, I have begun to quiz my wife and kids every night about their
day-to-day expenses, just so I can return time and time again to this app.
I think they may be calling me names behind my back:
“Meet my dad, Mr. Scrooge.”
Sigh, the power of good design.
Now to apply the same design thinking to the main university website… ah, now there’s a worthy challenge!