HP’s (s hpq) webOS, with its revolving task manager, is just plain cool. Interacting with the cards that represent running apps is intuitive and fun, and it’s too bad other platforms don’t use a similar method to work with tasks. Well, Android (s goog) phone owners have one available, and it’s free. Itching Thumb is a free app in the Android Market that works with the Android launcher to handle running tasks in a graphical way, complete with gesture support.
The app can become the default launcher, which lets it take over use of the Home button to trigger the graphical task manager. Apps currently running are displayed in a revolving carousel method, or a simple flat display can be set in the preferences. The carousel of apps can be swiped left or right to spin through running apps, and tapping on one brings that app to the forefront for use.
Itching Thumb uses gestures in a unique way to interact with apps. Swiping up on an app’s card closes it (like in webOS), and swiping down triggers a gesture editor to assign a gesture to that app. Once a gesture has been assigned to an app, drawing the gesture at the bottom of the Itching Thumb screen will fire up that app. It is simple and works well.
There are a lot of settings to configure Itching Thumb as desired, most of which control the look of the app carousel. I haven’t decided if Itching Thumb will remain as my full-time task manager, but it’s a fun diversion in the meantime.
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