Archive for May, 2007

Why I Love Joost

I received an invite to Joost last week and was finally able to check it out. In a nutshell, it’s one of the best applications I’ve seen in a long time. The content is nice – it’s fun to watch TV on my computer – but what I love even more about Joost is the usability.

Here’s a list of the top 5 thing you can learn about rich applications from Joost:

1.) It’s focused. Joost is an application that brings TV to your desktop in a way that works. It has some other features, like show recommendation and chat, but they’re relegated strictly to the background. The focus is on TV, and you know that from the second you start up the app. Too many apps springing up these days are trying to leverage some neat trend first and promotetheir product/service second (“social networking” is driving me crazy.)

2.) It just works. The developers have obviously taken some pains to make sure that Joost just works for me, and I love that. I don’t have to worry about configuring a bunch of settings or setting my bandwidth or selecting my player or authorizing my plug-ins. The controls are simple and make sense, and if you close Joost in the middle of a show, it opens back up later to the place you left off. In a world full of applications that only really work after an hour, or even ten minutes, of re-configuring your computer, applications that work so smoothly are a breath of fresh air. It seems so simple, but it makes me so much more excited about this application.

3.) It’s extremely usable. The controls are simple and easy to find. The layout is focused on maximizing the screen area and provides a few basic controls to do everything else.

3.) It has a great website. Joost’s website is short, sweet, and to the point. The header features small flash movies that promote the application in entertaining ways and the content itself is concise. Rather than trying to be all things to all people, it’s one thing: a website that tells you about Joost.

The bottom line with applications like Joost is that they emphasize elegant usability. It looks great, but it’s not cluttered or confusing, and at the end of the day, that’s the single most important thing separating good ideas from popular software.

Joost doesn’t tell me how many invitations I have left, but as of right now I can still send invites. If you’re looking for one, add a comment with your email address and I’ll get it sent to you ASAP.

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May 25, 2007 at 12:35 pm 4 comments

Intro to Flex Builder 2 presentation

I gave a presentation earlier this week online for Adobe on using Flex Builder 2. If you’re new to Flex or wondering whether Flex Builder is worth using, it might be helpful.

This was the first time I’d given this presentation, so it went a little long. We also had over 100 attendees, so the question and answer time was absolutely crazy. The text area where I as the presenter was reading the questions from was scrolling so fast I could barely read it!

You can find Adobe’s recording of the presentation here.

May 23, 2007 at 12:55 pm Leave a comment


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