Interactive sketches

Once in a while I come across an idea that's fun for it's combination of simplicity and power. The most recent was the notion of interactive sketches. Seems obvious now that someone showed it to me.

Marc Retig is doing interactive sketches -- like interactive paper prototypes -- using scanned sketches and dreamweaver. Also pointed to this Chris Edwards interactive sketch (Shockwave). Reminded me of Tomoko Takahashi's Word Perhect (Flash) project, which is a humorous interactive sketch interface of a faux word processing application.

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Forgoing paper for software?

Although I rarely do it, personally, I also think the same results can sometimes be achieved directly in Visio or Dreamweaver without going to pencil and paper. I've heard so many people argue with me that software doesn't allow for the flexibility of pencil and paper though. What do you think?

Bits vs. Atoms

When pressed for time, a hand drawn sketch can be the fastest way to communicate the concept to the development team without having to wrestle with the machine. Visio's formatting, for example, can cause a loss of momentum - critical early in the design process.

By the way, Marc Rettig wrote a great paper back in 1994 on the use of handsketches for rapid prototyping. It was called "Prototyping for tiny fingers" and was in the Communications of the ACM journal. I still keep it in my filing cabinet for reference.

Thanks for the reference

Yes, I'm sure you're right about the speed factor -- which is why I've never tried to start a project from scratch using software in the past. I prefer to get the concepts out on paper -- I feel like less time is invested into concepts if I don't turn them into pixels.

Thanks for the Rettig reference. I will read that soon. I read everything. That's why I started this silly blog.