Having used the majority of standard word processing applications over the years I, like many I'm sure, have become used to the features that now come as standard with most applications, the ability to change font sizes, weight, typeface, colour, alignment etc. which are lovely features to have but with them come a lot of baggage.

To allow access to all these customisations, quick and easy solutions for users must be provided, which generally come in the form of buttons sitting along the top or the side of the window. You're probably thinking "what's so wrong with that?", and until recently I would have thought the same. That was until I discovered OmmWriter...

Less is more...

From the second you open the app, you can tell it's different from other apps. It takes over your entire screen displaying your writing canvas and a few menu options which disappear when you start typing leaving you with a clear workspace allowing you to focus on the writing. The options reappear as soon as you begin to move the cursor. The addition of calm instrumental music and keyboard sounds makes you feel like you're meditating rather than writing. It is oddly relaxing.

I began to wonder why mores apps don't behave in this way. With gesture based interfaces become more common, why are we still confining ourselves to fixed windows and workspaces? Why can't our menu options fade away into the background until we need them? I guess one argument could be people often like to run apps side by side. I was the same until I discovered Spaces on my MacBook. I now dedicate one screen per application allowing me to keep my workspace clear. I suppose it really boils down to personal preference and not everyone uses Apple computers, but I think there's a lot of potential to include some of these simple gesture based functions to keep your mind focussed on whatever you happen to be working on, whatever the platform.