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Jennifer Cadence
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 |  September 18, 2020

 

Unposed group of creative business people in an open concept office brainstorming their next project.

Welcome back to AppSheet’s Feature Friday where we showcase new and favorite features. This quick guide will help you build your apps faster so you can focus on what matters. 

Editor UI Refresh Q&A with Carie Phon 

Thank you for taking the time to speak with us today. What is your current role at Google and what area of AppSheet are you currently working on? 

I’m a UX/UI Product Designer. My main area of focus is improving the app creation experience for both new and existing app creators. At this very moment, however, I’m working on refreshing the App UI, the apps being created by app creators (more information to come!) 

You've been working on refreshing an important part of the AppSheet experience. Can you tell us what that is? 

Now that we’re a part of Google Cloud, there has been a huge effort across AppSheet to integrate. The Google UI refresh was no exception. To ensure an integrated experience without breaking existing functionality, we adopted Google’s Material design standards into the product. The refresh introduces accessible colors and contrast, recognizable Material UI patterns, visual hierarchy, and minor usability improvements to the Editor. 

Screen Shot 2020-09-18 at 12.10.36 PM

You worked closely with our Creator Community on this project, can you explain what that relationship is like? 

The Creator Community was instrumental in how quickly we were able to deliver the refreshed UI to the public. From day one, I was thrilled at the number of people who volunteered to beta-test the product. The Editor refresh was a substantial change, so the fact that so many people readily opted into the new interface was incredible.

Thanks to the beta-testing group, we got a lot of great, honest feedback and were able to correct a number of issues right before launch. If it wasn’t for these dedicated testers, I don’t think we would have felt as confident about rolling out to the public as soon as we did. 

Was there a challenge you didn’t anticipate that ending up turning into something you really enjoyed? 

At first, the Editor was intimidating. App creators use the Editor on a daily basis, it was a real challenge to incorporate Google design patterns into such an intricate interface using only CSS updates. However, what was intimidating at first quickly became a fun collaboration between cross-functional teams. Together, we were able to make AppSheet look and feel like a Google Cloud product and improve usability without any major functionality changes. It looks so different and yet it’s still the same AppSheet under the hood!

What was your favorite part of the refresh experience? 

It’s hard to pick just one part, I’ve learned so much from this experience, but one moment that really stood out to me was the first time I saw an AppSheet demo using the new UI. That made me really happy to see someone making an app, end-to-end, using the designs I created. 

Any final thoughts you’d like to share? 

This was a collaborative effort, a special shout out to the entire team who made this all possible: Nico, Seth, Maria, Arthur, Mike, Chris H, Josh, Morgan, Peter, Jeff, Christina, Lilia, Dallas, Devin, Chris B, Praveen, and Theirry. The refresh is but one of many improvements to come, stay tuned for more updates to the app creation experience!

 

Thank you again to Carie from our incredible engineering team for your contributions to this week's post. Be sure to follow along in the AppSheet Creator Community for additional updates and get started building your next app today. 

 

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Jennifer Cadence

Jennifer helps AppSheet creators learn and love our platform.

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