My Word Stash

In Development
Services provided: UX-UI design.
Tools used: Adobe XD, illustrator, Photoshop.

My Word Stash is a personalized dictionary app (currently in development.) As an ESL speaker I bump into new words on a daily basis and although I look them up and add them to my notes, I wanted to be able to save them in an alphabetical order and add tags so I can easily search and use them. I chatted with other ESL speakers, professional writers, avid readers and actors, and I realized that all of us share the same need – put our stash of words in order! 

Research

This is a simple app – type a word, sort it alphabetically, save it to a database, integrate the definition from a google API. As always my goal is to create an easy, user-friendly flow, and a stylish UI.

I reached out to a number of potential users whom I thought would be interested in using this type of product. I collected data about their usage of online dictionaries, thesauruses, rhyming dictionaries, how they maintain their word lists, and how much do they actually use the word lists after they store them.

I found these common problems: it takes too much time to write/copy and paste the definition into a list, it’s not sorted alphabetically, and it’s hard to look up words after they’ve been stored.

Development

From the moment a user logs into the app, they’ll be able to add a word to their list. Once they’ve added a word, the only thing they would need to do (if they want) is to add a tag – which will help them find the word they’ve added quicker. This process doesn’t need any bells and whistles – the faster the user gets to the bottom line, the better their experience on the app will be.  

MVP

When I first started working on this project I called it “Word Bank.” To start I only focused on two functionalities – type a word and sort it alphabetically. I’ve written the algorithm in HTML, CSS and JS. Under any other circumstances I wouldn’t hire myself to write a full algorithm but I got the job done here somehow! (As seen in the GIF.)

Branding

The simplicity of this product leaves a lot of room for creativity and I figured that a sense of humour wouldn’t harm the branding process. Once I decided on a name – the logo development was a breeze. I normally come up with 3-4 different logo ideas but this one happened on the first attempt!

It would be easy enough to let users change the background panels of their word stash. This is not a “must have” feature but it would be nice to have. I designed the patterns in illustrator and will continue experimenting with the colours till I’m completely happy with how it looks. 

High-Fi Prototype

 Next Steps: This app is still in development, it’s a personal project so it’s moving a little slower…

Once this version is complete, I’ll do some user testing, then I’ll set up a database, then another testing before uploading the product to the iTunes store as a free app. I’ll review how it’s doing on the store (number of downloads  and customer reviews), work out all the bugs (if need be), and lastly, add a premium version which will add rhyming and thesaurus dictionaries.

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