3 November 2010
Touch of science
Will the Thunderer’s Eureka iPad app displace its printed supplement?
The Times’s Eureka app for the iPad went on sale from iTunes today, price 59p. The design, by in-house art director Matt Curtis, complements that of the monthly print supplement of the same name (see ‘Pull out pages and panic‘ on the Eye blog) but this ‘Science of Sport’ special comprises all-new content, commissioned and programmed for the app at great expense, with several features that take advantage of the medium’s advantages and idiosyncracies.
There’s still no widespread consensus about iPad navigation. Eureka opts for a graphic network of linked hexagon for its overall contents page (above). A chain of hexagons pops up in the bottom segment of each portrait page when you touch the screen, and a quivering rectangular ‘E’ lozenge (see below, at foot of page) indicates that the iPad can be rotated 90 degrees …
… to view a new graphic, animation or video in landscape format (below).
Swiping a what appears to be a flat colour illustration of the human brain (above) reveals it to be a rotating 3D visualisation, and touching the sections brings up more information.
Other sections look unselfconsciously print-like (below).
Eye’s white-coated and bespectacled science department has had little time to explore the app, other than a quick look at some nicely sequenced slideshows and a racing car that flops apart when swiped.
Some of the more chatty text and eye candy (above) might raise a few bushy eyebrows back in the lab … but that’s showbiz.
Speaking of labs, this workbench sequence (above and below) shows another of Eureka’s approaches to the design of understanding.
Each hexagonal ‘button’ reveals a column of text (below).
Eureka for iPad app by Times Newspapers Limited. Rated 4+.
Art director: Matt Curtis
Picture editor: Madeline Penny
Design: Oliver Bothwell, Fraser Lyness, Pete Robertson
Intro video animation by Applied Works
Read ‘Human touch’, about recent apps for the iPad in Eye 77.
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