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Scott Forstall the first time suggested about skeuomorph and flat design in iOS

In an interview for the computer history Museum a former top Apple Executive Scott Forstall told some stories. And before the interview historian John Markoff asked Scott the question that troubled many – what he thinks about the current design of iOS?

Forstall and jobs was known for his love of the skeuomorph. For a long time the design elements of iOS was similar to the real materials such as wood or paper. For example, on the iPad the Contacts app looked like a real notebook.

After Forstall fired (partly for his refusal to apologize for the failed launch of Apple Maps), johnny Ive took over development of the iOS interface.

For the first time touched this topic, Markoff said, “I Assume that currently you’re using an iPhone. Is there anything that you don’t like? If Yes, what?”.

Forstall could avoid answering, but he honestly said: “I do Not like much. If you are a designer if you think of the design, it is impossible to live some part of their life never thinking that something could be done better. I talked about this back during the first version. With the second version always comes out better.”

Then the historian said, “there was a period of maybe 5 or 6 years ago, when the skeuomorph was very controversial. What do you think about this?”.

“I have not heard of the term “skeuomorph” even years after we released the iPhone… I mean that’s an awful word! It sounds like [inaudible] or like you have something mortirolo. It sounds unnatural, it sounds awful!

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When I look at good design when I pick up a good design, I need something that is easy to use. Available. Friendly. So you can use with no instruction. It’s fun.

Look at the projects developed in the Apple, we talked about illustrative design, a metaphorical design. It’s all brought to Apple’s Steve jobs with the original Mac, if not sooner. The original Mac desktop and folders were very similar to the real Desk, on which stood a computer.

Therefore, we used this design philosophy. This does not mean that we loved every part of it. This does not mean that I loved every part of it. There are things that I didn’t really like.

But we created this design, and it worked. As we have learned, what worked? People started to use it,” laughed Forstall.

Then he quoted two e-mails from customers. One of them said, as two-year-old girl uses an iPad with an intuitive design, and in another – 99-year-old woman with cataracts and arthritis read books on the iPad.

“We knew what we were doing all right with the user interface. Had a great team and we knew that the right thing to do”.

So we waited for a response. Any discontent about the current design of iOS and, of course, no regrets about the original design. Simply do not need to call it squamifera.

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