Every once in a while I browse the iOS App Store in search for interesting apps to try. If you’re interested in getting the most out of your iOS device I suggest you do the same. This is because it’s simply not enough to see newcomers and highlighted apps on the front page of the Store, since there are some great apps that you can find under the surface. As you probably know, there are thousands of amazingly designed and very helpful apps out there, so you can’t rely only on Apple to showcase the most valuable ones.
Writing Aid – Definitions, Synonyms and Meanings, by Benjamin Mayo, is one of those great little apps. This one is made for those who like to write, no matter if you’re a professional writer or a student who needs to turn in an essay. As its creator says, this app is there to break any writer’s block, which can be a source of frustration for many. Writing Aid could be downloaded from the App Store for only $1.
I’ll walk you through the functionality of this app, but first let’s take a look at its UI design. When you launch the app, all you’re going to see is a text field at the top where you can type in the word or phrase you’re looking for. This will produce easy to read results right underneath, where you can tap on a particular result to get more info. If you wait for a bit, or if you’re searching for a phrase, you’re going to see a list of definitions and synonyms.
I am not a big fan of iOS dictionaries, since most of them are overly complex and bring crowded and unpleasant interface. Even though it’s great to have all of those information at disposal, Writing Aid brings just enough helpful information to truly help you with your work. This app is nicely designed, and it’s actually barebones in terms of UI elements design. So for example, you can type in “greeny blue color” in the search field, and you’ll get results like “teal”, “aqua”, and “turquoise”. You can also find definitions of unknown words, and their synonyms as well. As you can see, you can use this app just like any dictionary, even though you can use “reverse dictionary” as well. All of these tools are there to enrich your vocabulary and to help you express your thoughts more eloquently. This is why I believe many of us can find this application of real and practical value, which is its biggest selling point.
Writing Aid is powered by Wiktionary, which means that even though the database is truly wide, sometimes you might not see helpful results. This is not a major downside, and it depends on complexity of your input. Still, I believe this app will provide valuable results for the most of us. The only thing that I want to see in an iPad version, which I really hope for in a future update.