Distraction free writing

Anyone remember the old dumb terminals, where there wasn't a desktop to speak of. Once you learnt the keys often you'd get a lot more writing done. Write Room, for the Mac, is a productivity tool that avoids desktop distraction. Darkroom is a windows port.

Design Simplicity

In design, and software design is no exception, simplicity is hard. It's not just a matter of reducing the number of variables or applying Occam's Razor, although this may help to a degree. Simplicity does not mean trivialing either. Sometimes particularly, in visual design, simplicity can be knowing about people. A design can be arranged in an intuitive way, the complexity reduced not by removal; but rearranging to appeal to intuition. Some software packages, like word, have more functions than ever--- the number of functions hasn't decreased; some would say that makes them less usable. But on the hole, the functions that most people want from word are readibly available.