Design Tools: Website Review UICloud
Ever wish you could search one place for user interface design tools? There are so many icons, buttons, navigation elements and forms out there. And it is tough to find them all in one place.
But UICloud changes that. The site, which is in Beta, collects, categorizes and allows users to search a whole host of UI parts. The goal of the site is to provide a search engine the finds the best UI elements on the web.
Not only is the site fabulously functional, it has a modern look and feel that is fun to use. The number of practical applications seem almost limitless.
UICloud is a new project that is the brainchild of Double-J Design, a company specializing in icon and GUI design. The company designs custom icon sets, custom graphic user interfaces and WordPress and print design.
Double-J is also working with a group of great partners from all around the web design community to put together this resource. Webdesigner Depot, n.design studio, DesignModo, Web Designer Wall, Insidesigns, Icon Finder and Find Icons are all partners in this project.
And the concept is something designers and developers have been looking for. Plus the site is completely free and no registration is required to use UICloud.
UICloud allows you to search it’s database for a variety of UI elements. What you do with the findings is up to you.
Search and Categories
UICloud has made searching a breeze.
Users can search for elements based on category (Apple, Andriod, Windows, PSD, HTML, CSS, jQuery or Vector); by element type or by color.
In browse mode, users can rank items by newest release, top rated and most popular downloads. Every UI set comes with a star-ranking (and the number of 5-star items on the site is pretty impressive). Plus, you know how many people have download each item and contributed to the product ranking.
Users can also search for specific products by name, type or keyword.
Blog and Design Help
One of the nice side features from UICloud is it’s community. The site has a blog with tips, tutorials and even giveaways. It is updated fairly frequently and can be just one more great resource for the web design and development community.
One of the coolest features on the site has nothing really to do with finding UI tools. It is a Button Builder. You can add your own text, color scheme and create custom buttons in a snap, plus generate usable CSS or HTML so you can use it on your site.
Plus UICloud is fully social with tools for sharing on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and more, so you can share your findings (or creations) with your networks.
UI Elements and Licensing
Each UI pack retains its original license as determined by the developer and prices are set by the developers. Every design on the site offers a free version and if there is a paid product, link back to the host site. Some of the most well-known and popular UI kits out there, including The Bricks, are available in the UICloud database.
Licenses for products can vary and it is up to the user to check all applicable terms before use.
Where do the elements come from? They can come from almost anywhere. Any developer with a UI pack can submit it to be included in the UI Cloud database. What really makes this process work is the review. UICloud staff check out every new pack and make sure it meets quality standards before adding it to the site – so you know you are always getting top-quality work.
This is a more usable version of the popular Dribbble for developers and web designers.
Not only can you take a look at a whole host of great UI elements, but you can also download and use them right away. Unlike controversy with designers “stealing” ideas from sharing sites, UICloud allows you to search, brainstorm and find usable elements for almost any project.
UICloud is one of the best and most innovative new sites for web designers and developers out there. There’s no risk or commitment, so why not check it out?