A Spreadsheet App For iPads That Makes Number-Crunching A Treat
AFTER HELPING DESIGN EXCEL 2013, JOSH LEONG STRUCK OUT ON HIS OWN, LAUNCHING A COLLABORATIVE SPREADSHEET APP FOR IPAD AND IPHONE.
Grid speaks to the average spreadsheet user (e.g., nearly everyone) with a universal content management system that’s accessible anywhere, on any Apple device. The interface, developed by Leong, product manager Michael Lin, and CTO Matt Monson, is christened Maestro, presumably referring to the gestures that let users control the spreadsheet. “The system takes away the need to dig into menus to find what you want,” the company explains on the website. “Just swipe left to put things in and swipe right to do fancy things with them like changing how something looks.” In his introductory video, Leong creates a mosaic of videos, data, and images. So in a way, it’s simpler than a spreadsheet–it’s a way to organize information graphically.
The app’s beta launch has inspired a good deal of discussion about its merits over on Y Combinator’s forum, and the general consensus seems to be that though the beta version is lacking a few features, it’s certainly a good start. Grid really shines when it’s building on the strengths of the iPhone and iPad. For example, the ability to input places from Google Maps, import people from your contact list, or even text message spreadsheet collaborators. Leong has hit on a sweet spot: an app that doesn’t just adapt PC functionality 1:1, but is actually enhanced by the unique capabilities of the mobile device running it.