I have a web application that works as a word processor/text editor with a text area for main input. It is designed through CSS. What background color is best to encourage the user to concentrate on the work and improve productivity? Does using a linear gradient or radial gradient have psychological effect? This text area part is the most important part, so the coloring of the other parts are flexible.
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I think the background should be clean - just white, or maybe paper-like. You can give users some options to choose from. Some may prefer clean card, the others, ruled paper.
A great way to make users focus on writing would be creating a distraction-free interface for writing - minimize the elements not directly related to writing, make the iconography minimallistic and you can allow users to go full screen. Regarding background - if you provide full screen, you could also add a dark theme.
A good example to follow is Byword app: http://bywordapp.com/