The release of Delicious Library was accompanied by a heck of a lot of fuss and hype within the Macintosh community, of which Siracusa’s article was clearly a part. I’ve yet to try it, both because I have found myself painfully short on free time the past ten days and because I have yet to find enough cause to warrant buying myself an iSight. Apple’s top-shelf Web camera, when used with Delicious Library to scan bar codes and automatically recognize the DVDs, books and CDs you own, constitutes the software package’s non-essential but ostensibly irresistible hook. It’s a neat trick that purports to turn the otherwise laborious act of cataloging your software into a nearly trivial exercise.
All the same, I remain nonplussed. I would like to catalog my collection, sure, but as Siracusa suggests, it’s not necessarily the kind of thing that’s particularly necessary. And, jeez, I get enough flack from friends and family for being overly organized and anal-retentive — having a meticulously inventoried database of the recreational media I own would be a kind of affirmation of my own hopeless drift towards obsessive compulsion.
Above: Tasty. The wonderfully inappropriate design of Delicious-Monster.com.
No iSight, But I Cite Their Site
All of which is an extremely roundabout way of getting to my point: the publishers of this program, Delicious Monster, have an awesome Web site. It’s just the best software site I’ve seen in years and years. The reason I say this is because it finally makes a convincing case for breaking away from the seemingly compulsory Apple.com-esque look — no carefully silhouetted and beautifully burnished icons here, no slavish devotion to white space.
Don’t get me wrong, I think the Apple.com style is gorgeous, but it’s become so commonplace among software developers that it’s become a kind of boring orthodoxy — and, to be clear, I certainly don’t exempt my own attempts at emulating the style from this orthodoxy.
Delicious Monster’s site, on the other hand, is brazen and self-indulgent and supremely memorable. Its designers, Capacitor Design Network use animations and illustration for no apparent purpose other than to evoke a mood and to make the whole affair fun — in many ways, it stands directly opposed to the kind of work I’m trying to do, but I can’t help but admire it more for that. Of all the marketing sites that have tried to capitalize on the independent spirit of Apple’s 21st Century renaissance, I have to say that this one is among a very few that actually manages to think different. How’s that for giving a bigger context?