Designing Great iPhone Apps: Josh Williams and GowallaVootie (1485 pencils) | Sun, 2010-08-01 12:25
Excerpted from Tapworthy: Designing Great iPhone Apps (O'Reilly Media)
By Josh Clark
Gowalla is a location-based social network that lets you and your entourage check in when you arrive at a new place, a way to share activities, discover new places, and find out what’s happening nearby. The app gives you a passport to fill with stylish stamps as you roam your city (or anywhere in the world). The app stamps your “passport” with a sleek icon for each new location you visit, and if you’re lucky, you’ll also find a virtual item (guitars, koi fish, cutoff shorts, you name it) hidden at the new spot. Pick up or swap these collect-em-all icons to build a pixel-perfect collection of virtual swag, a goal that turns the app into a global scavenger hunt.
Gowalla built on the demonstrated strengths of Alamofire, the company behind the app (and since renamed Gowalla). The inspiration for the app began with Alamofire’s talent for building playful, collectible icons for Web and software interfaces. In 2005, the company created IconBuffet, a website for designers to collect, trade, and buy sets of icons for use in their own projects. This pixel swap meet led the company in 2008 to create PackRat, a Facebook game for collecting and stealing virtual cards sporting the company’s signature icon stylings.
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