Day One is the creation of Paul Mayne. Paul launched Day One into the world in March 2011. Since launch, it has enjoyed a great deal of success and visibility. Most recently, Day One was awarded the coveted Apple Design Award. What started as a pet project built on a dream turned into a 7 person team that makes one of the best apps in the Mac and iOS app stores. Here is what Paul does to make me love Day One:
1. Start simple
The first version of Day One was missing some basic things. Although the app was meant to hold private thoughts, it didn't have app-level password protection. Neither did it allow adding images to journal entries.
These might seem like non-starters. But the large “add an entry” button dominated the UI, inviting users to start journaling now. Journaling was the core purpose of the app and it did it very well from…(wait for it)…day one.
2. Keep it Real
It's tempting to think that since Paul is the sole designer and founder at Bloom Built, that he gets everything his way. Unfortunately, this isn't the case. I asked Paul, “Have you ever had to alter your design to meet technical constraints?” Paul's answer?
Paul has developed the habit of checking in with dev early and often. Paul shares designs with developers almost daily. He gets their feedback on the feasibility of what he has designed. This often sends him back to the drawing board, but it saves him a lot more grief and heartache down the road.
3. Feet on the Ground, Head in the Clouds
While Paul takes a measured approach to innovation, he doesn't let that stop him from dreaming. He's very keen to user needs and desires for the app—and he designs accordingly. However, Paul sometimes takes a little longer to fully realize his vision. Instead of putting a large new feature in one big release, Paul has developed a system for adding large changes a little at a time.
A recent example of this is Publish. Publish allows users to push a private journal entry to a site hosted by Day One. Publish is just the first version of a larger feature set that Paul is designing and building. By getting this smaller version out he can see how it is used and get real feedback on how to build the future of Day One.
What else does Paul have in store for Day One? Bloom Built is not sitting still. Paul has a great many ideas for the future of Day One and for Journaling. I look forward to the future of Day One with excitement. Thanks Paul for making a great app and for sharing your passion!
Photo of the Apple Design Award for Day One app
I'd like to take a moment to thank Dallas Petersen. Dallas and I used to work together at BYU. I contacted Dallas to ask him about his work with Bloom Built. He invited me to interview Paul. I really appreciate the time that both of them took. Thanks guys, you're the best!