“Bloom: an interactive, organic visualization of starred emails” by Martin and Ju

  • ©Amy Martin and Wendy Ju



Entry Number: 33


    Bloom: an interactive, organic visualization of starred emails



    Bloom uses the metaphor of a desktop plant to remove task management from the already overloaded inbox and into a more human environment. When tasks in the inbox are starred, the email information is sent to an external touchscreen that then grows a flower for that specific task. The flower is activated on touch and the text of the email is displayed. Plucking the flower—touching, holding, then flicking the flower—removes that item from the task list.

    A large number of tools exist for managing tasks. Bloom is different in that it uses an organic, passive metaphor for visual display. Instead of having a series of piling text, whether in physical or digital form, Bloom does not visually overwhelm. A single task is as visually appealing as fifty. Additionally, although numerous email visualizations also exist much of this work has to do with overall inbox visualization and/or the display of relationships [1]. There is also precedence in using metaphor to visualize email as seen in Kjen Wilkens’ Mail Garden. Bloom is distinct in both its focus on task management and our intent at full integration with existing email systems.


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