I'm designing an app that needs to display a lot of insurance information, the home page is pretty similar to email inbox (with even more information). The user will have a lot cases or projects he needs to go through and fill new information. (like below)

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is there any good book, article, video, etc on principles or good practices to design "inbox interfaces"?

2 Answers 2


Two things I can suggest to improve that interface:

  1. Eliminate that lines between rows and use a different background colour for even and odd lines.

  2. The contents of sorting column should have a highlighting, like, marking it with a different colour in the background or changing some attributes of the text, like boldness / font, etc.


U3. Make the checkboxes work with Shift and Control keys (like in Gmail's standard view) to be possible to select various items in less user interventions.


I am not aware of any books or articles, but I do have a few thoughts on principles.

I would look more at the tasks that the user is performing rather than the type of interface that is being built. For example, which of the columns on this page will the user need to quickly skim before choosing which one to read/edit next? Or does the user review each row in its entirety before moving to the next. If all of the columns are always being evaluated, perhaps adding rollover highlighting for each row that allows the user to bring more attention to the row (or column) they are reviewing.

I would also research things like how much space between items offers optimal readability. Compare email programs (Outlook, Gmail, Yahoo) and see which seems easier to view a list of incoming email. Which is easier to skim? Gmail increases the amount of white space between rows for larger monitors. Outlook stays static. I'm not sure about Yahoo.

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