June 22, 2010 in Utilities (E)
[prMac.com] Berkeley, California - The Brainstormer 1.2 is a unique idea generator app based on a physical idea wheel constructed in 2004 by concept artist Andrew Bosley. The Brainstormer's distinctive visual design and carefully curated word lists are now available on the iPhone and iPod touch.
The Brainstormer is a bit of kindling for creative minds. A tactile tool to randomly combine a plot, a subject and a setting or style, the Brainstormer provides that elusive moment of inspiration for writing, painting, or any kind of creative endeavour. It's a great way to combat creative block, to spark new ideas for a project and to summon up quick creative prompts for doodling, sketching or journaling.
Andrew created the Brainstormer while studying visual development and illustration at San Jose State University As Andrew describes it, "I was always trying to give myself little concept projects to keep myself sharp. I made a series of lists in the back of my very first Moleskine sketchbook. The idea was to combine an object or person with a style or adjective to create unique and interesting combinations to concept out and illustrate."
Even in this crude form, the Brainstormer was a useful fuel for generating sketch concepts. But Andrew wanted something more sophisticated, more tactile. He designed an elegant and evocative cover for it and turned it into an actual, physical wheel. He also added the innermost wheel of plots: "I wanted to add greater depth to the combinations", Andrew recalls, "I needed a story if the illustration was going to be interesting. So this new ring of conflict was a way of adding context to the concepts that came from the Brainstormer."
People loved spinning the wheels and generating ideas with the Brainstormer, and demanded a digital version. With the help of a good friend and co-worker, the web version of the Brainstormer was born.
The reaction to this version was overwhelming. "Who needs the muse when you have this?" one blog commenter said. "Brilliant". Writers began to take notice and found the Brainstormer equally useful for generating story ideas and writing prompts.
A great many of the users felt that it was a perfect fit for the iPhone. One of those dreamers was writer and iPhone developer Joel Davis. "When I ran into writer's block," Joel said, "I would spin the wheels on the Brainstormer. I would go from having zero ideas to having to choose between two or three stories. Sometimes the prompts would lead me somewhere entirely unexpected."
Andrew and Joel teamed up to bring the Brainstormer to the iPhone, adapting the classic Brainstormer wheels to the multitouch screen and redesigning the look and feel to fit the device. They added the oft-requested ability to customize or completely replace the word lists, and the ability to share your inspiration through social networking.
The web version of the Brainstormer has already provided that elusive spark to hordes of creatives all over the globe. It inspired a "Spin the Wheel" short story contest on the website AuthorCulture. What great new works it will inspire now that it has arrived on the iPhone?
About Andrew Bosley
Andrew Bosley is a Concept Artist for Red Storm entertainment, in Raleigh, NC. Andrew graduated from SJSU in San Jose, CA with a Bachelor in Fine Arts and Illustration.
* iPhone and iPod touch
* Requires iPhone OS 3.1 or later
* 1.2 MB
Pricing and Availability:
The Brainstormer 1.2 is $1.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Utilities category. Contact Tapnik Software for additional information, screenshots or illustrations, or a review copy.
Tapnik Software was started by Joel Davis in 2009 as an outlet for his iPhone game ideas and projects. Tapnik is located within a tiny bubble of spacetime, captured inside an ailing MacBook that sits on my dining room table in Berkeley, CA Copyright (C) 2010 Tapnik Software. All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.