Throughout this book, we've looked at applications like DropSend, Squidoo, and Google Page Creator, among others. These are all great applications, but this is not an exhaustive list, by any means. There are many other great applications out there, and while finding them isn't always easy, studying them is an effective way to gain more insight into how to design the obvious.
Studying great Web applications is also an effective way to get some inspiration.
Backpack offers us a new approach to organization for small projects. Page Creator offers us a quick way to create basic Web pages. Blinksale offers us a graceful solution to the difficult task of managing invoices to multiple clients. And Meebo offers us a way to send instant messages in a Web page.
All of the design problems these applications solve have been solved in a myriad of other ways over the years, but these simple Web applications have taken a new look at the problems and presented interesting and engaging new solutions.
We can find inspiration in existing applications, common problems (like keeping track of bookmarks on multiple computers), and even installed solutions like word processors and spreadsheet applications. These are all things that can be looked at from a new perspective and redesigned for use on the Web.
When asked how 37signals comes up with new application ideas, Jason Fried even suggests the outside world can be a good place for inspiration: