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Say Hello To Grapefruit, The Mental Health Management App!


An update on the newly-named Grapefruit. It has a name and is in the final testing phase!

My internal goal was/is to have the first macOS version of this app released in the fall. Yesterday was the first day of fall so, well, that means it’s crunch time! Time to whip out the motivational speeches and overwork the employees! Oh wait, it's just me. Hmmm.

Well, how about a progress report then?

1. It has a name!

It's called Grapefruit. It's a mental health management app, a category I'm not sure exists but definitely should and will.

Last time around I spoke about the process of building the new version of the app formerly known as Illuum. But it needed a new name so I could set up a website and create the icon and give the whole thing a look.

The original web version was called Illuum — but that was too hard to pronounce. Nine Today, what I called it to fix the Illuum problems, wasn’t a name I ever loved. It’s okay but now the scale goes to 10 and rating isn’t as central as it was and I want the app to be able to grow and pivot aside from any particular mechanic or feature.

There was the idea of more explicit naming. It’s a journal, it’s a mental health tool, it’s a tracking tool. Angus And Sons Journal And Tracking Tool For Better Mental Health? A little on-the-nose perhaps and it would have to keep getting longer as I added functionality and also I'd have to make some sons.

I started calling it The Grapefruit App at some point to myself. I like the visual of the grapefruit and citrus fruit in general. It’s known as a healthy fruit and I once started a different self-improvement project with a citrus-y name.

I wanted more to the name though and so was playing with a million variations on something Grapefruit or Grapefruit something. It was tough. I wanted the name to be perfect. I wanted it to be funny and charming but simple and obvious. My perfectionism around the name was stressing me out and inhibiting progress.

Then I got some great advice: keep it simple. Don’t try to be perfect. Grapefruit is enough.

I made the choice and making that choice freed me up to move on with other parts of the project. Phew.

2. It has a website! And some branding!

With a name, I was able to get a domain and put together a one-pager website:

This website will need to expand into multiple pages before launch, but for now it’s there and you can sign up for updates. There’s time to iterate and build it up and add more content later.

It also was the first place I needed a logo / app icon. I made it from stone-bare nothing one very late night and it turned out fairly decent: app logo and icon

And sometimes it has a face! app logo and icon

Like the website, I’ll iterate on this logo and refine it over time. They aren't hitting my quality standards yet, but for now it gets us to the next step.

3. It’s … running!

The last post was full of screenshots from my design program because the final designs weren’t applied to the prototype yet.

But now there’s a fully-running fully-functional version of the app. The prototype is long gone and having the real interface in place feels so good I could sing about it. I won’t because nobody wants me to sing, and certainly not about software, but I could. And may have. To myself. In the shower. Without the water running.

Anyway, here's a gif and a screenshot or two so you can get a bit of a feel for it:

demo of Grapefruit
Watch me clumsily write some nonsensical answers to serious questions.

In that last screenshot you can see how I had a rough week in late August, followed by a somewhat regular high-low cycle through September. I should also add this is a lot of fake test data before you call me a doctor, but how cool is that?

4. And it's close!

On the timeline overall, it's very close to release. So close in fact that it's thinking really hard about baseball right now.

So the goal is still to get it in the Mac App Store before the end of this year.

Currently I'm tweaking and polishing the little things. I've already cut out everything that I can cut out to still have a sensible full version to release. Now it's down to making sure that what is there feels and functions like it should.

And as I've been doing since day 1, I continue testing it. Readers with eagle eyes may have noticed the foreign language test words in the banner photo. It's because I'm testing with (nonsense) text of different languages and also you should give the eagles back their eyes -- what did they ever do to you, huh?

I'll keep posting more updates, but if there's anything about this process you're particularly curious about, do get in touch!

Thanks again for following along and why not have a grapefruit?

Thanks to Marketing-Master-Maeghan for her great input and encouragement always but particularly during this phase.