Curiosity by Tamper ($1.99) by Tamper is a contextual Wikipedia app that is focused on helping you discover and learn about the world around you. If you love learning new things from Wikipedia, but also want to discover the history of your immediate surroundings at the same time, then this is the app for the job.
Like many of you, I have a natural curiosity for things. Even though I’m no longer in school at the moment, I love learning and finding out new things about the world every day. Wikipedia has become a go-to source for many who want to find out some information about something, and that goes for me as well. With Wikipedia, it is essentially a giant rabbit hole, but it can definitely be hard to find a starting point if you’re just bored and trying to pass time. With Curiosity, that is no longer the case.
The interface of Curiosity is simple and clean, which will appeal to any minimalists out there. The app features plenty of white so that reading is easy, and the sans serif typeface makes it look modern. There are four sections in the app that are labeled with just icons, which are easily recognizable, though each section is labeled when you view it. Scrolling through the topic lists and transitioning between sections is fast and seamless, which I’m impressed with. Overall, if you are looking for a sleek and fast Wikipedia app, then Curiosity is a top choice in that department.
In Curiosity, the app is split up into four sections: Nearby, Popular, Explore, and You. For the Nearby feature to work, you’ll have to grant Curiosity permission to access your current location, but once you do, you’ll find a map with many different circular photos scattered around the area. Underneath the map is a list of of nearby relevant Wikipedia articles, or you can tap on the photos to view what topic is linked to it.
Popular allows you to filter by Today, This Week, or This Month, and it will display the top 10 popular topics according to Wikitrends. The timeline in this view is pretty nice, as it is color-coded from red to blue to indicate the popularity level.
The Explore section is my favorite, as it expands beyond what is immediately around you or popular, and gives you different categories of topics, such as Nearby Paintings, Historic Battles, Famous Inventors, and more. Each section displays the top three results, but you can tap on “See All” to view the rest.
While the magic with Curiosity is in the contextual-based sections, it also functions as a regular Wikipedia app since you can search for anything you want. To access the search, just pull the screen down from the top from any view, and start typing in your query. The app will deliver results in real-time, though it may have a few seconds delay since it must comb through all of the contents of Wikipedia, so that’s understandable. As you find the topic you’re looking for, just tap on it to view.
When you open an article, you get a clean reading view that will highlight the main image at the top if available (a header image, if you will), and the body of the article itself is shown in the traditional serif typeface for legibility. All links in the text work as they should, opening new pages within the app itself. Curiosity also has three buttons in the top right corner when viewing articles: Read In, Bookmark, and Share. The Read In feature allows users to choose a different language to read the article in (opens a separate page), Bookmark lets you save the page for accessing later, and Share brings up the native iOS share sheet.
The final section of Curiosity is You, where it stores all of your bookmarks and even browsing history. From here, there is an Edit option for the history section, so you can remove anything you don’t want to have showing in history (safe from prying eyes). You can remove a bookmark by tapping on the bookmark button when viewing the article as well.
I’ve been using Curiosity for the past few days and have found it to be an excellent Wikipedia app for my needs. I love the sleek, minimal aesthetic and how fast the app works. And while it is a contextual-based app, it’s still incredibly nice to be able to search for anything you feel like reading about on Wikipedia. If you’re looking for an all-in-one Wikipedia app for your iPhone (it comes with a companion Apple Watch app) that will help you learn about what’s around you, then I highly recommend giving Curiosity by Tamper a try.