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Emotitones

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Active2008 - 2009
LocationLos Angeles, CA
WorkWeb Development
Mobile Website

Send Her an Emotitone

Ever wanted to send someone a song or audio snippet which expressed how you felt about them? Perhaps it's their birthday — would you send them one of those classic songs about the subject? If so, send them an emotitone!

Good ol’ Joe Carlen at Venture Seeds has been subbing work out to me for years now. In fall of 2008 we began discussing a new top-secret project for a client of his who needed a mobile application demo to pitch to publishers. When everything was figured out, we got started.

Project Components

The client wished to have a normal website and a mobile website designed specifically for the Blackberry smartphone as a demo. With funding a more comprehensive set of mobile devices could be supported. Both websites would enable a user to send an emotitone to a cellular number. A developer was already lined up for the back-end functionality. All they needed was a talented designer. When they couldn't find one, they settled on me.

Concept Identity

With proactive input from Shefali (the client) I developed the logo fairly quickly. She came up with the clever emoticon with the eighth note for a smile. Since logos often consume weeks of work I was relieved that this component had been solved early. Moving forward...

Initially I started with the smaller confines of the mobile website interface to define the brand identity. The concept of the emotitone (emotion + tone) inspired vivid curvy graphics and a relatively straightforward design. Some lighter visuals were explored but the client selected the dark blue look n’ feel you see here.

With the design concept approved, the rest was relatively smooth going. The client provided a simple user journey for sending an emotitone via both interfaces. I interpreted this document into a string of screens and hand-coded the mobile site in XHTML Mobile 1.0 and the website in XHTML 1.0 Strict for broadest compatibility. Clean, semantic markup all the way. The mobile website component of this project had its own set of bugs that were squashed one by one when troubleshot. The client provided me with a Blackberry for testing purposes, but between the four or five seemingly identical Blackberries in our ad-hoc team there were minor differences which demanded resolution. Once the code was solid I handed it off to the developer to integrate with a database of audio clips.

All in All

In the grand scheme of things this was a rather simple project that pleased my client Joe and his client Shefali. We all got paid, she got funded, and I’m all done with this little write-up.

Emotitones Website
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EMOTITONES WEBSITE

Emotitones Website Design and Development
Emotitones : Mobile Website Design & Development

The client loved this dark design which seemed to convey or capture vivid emotion in a website interface. It also translated well into the smaller mobile website layout. The background graphics were intentionally kept subtle to enhance the visibility of foreground elements.

The screen sequence is pretty simple: select a category here on the left, then choose from available clips and send the clip to a specified cellular number.

In the normal website most of the elements were combined into a few strategic CSS sprites which reduce loading time and calls to the server, thus improving website performance. But the mobile site demo as developed for the Blackberry wasn’t capable of these advanced features and was subsequently dumbed down a tad. However, an alternative mobile website version was developed to take advantage of advanced browsers.

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