WORKSHOP: Good Design Faster, Day Two: Making Things
Thursday, August 25th
led by Dan Harrelson and P.J. Onori
Good Design Faster is a two-day workshop that helps you understand how to get ideas out of your head, onto paper, and into a prototype format with remarkable quickness. Because you’ll be working in groups, it’s best for everyone if you take the full two-day workshop. You will need a laptop for this portion of the workshop.
We are working in a world of rich, dynamic interfaces, both on the web and on our devices. The experiences we design are interactive, responsive, and have emotion. Prototypes allow us to articulate the feeling and function of a design in a way that a wireframe does not.
Building on the design learnings from Day One of Good Design Faster, you’ll learn how to go straight to “wireframing” in code and producing an interactive digital prototype without bothering to churn out umpteen wireframes. You’ll see how your sketchboard materials can serve as a basis for your prototype.
On Day Two, we’ll start by introducing the importance of prototyping to a design process. Through a short presentation we’ll discuss how the use of many small prototypes can better inform the design of a system than one large prototype. Specifically, we will show that:
- Effective prototypes are fast. We want to use techniques that allow for rapid iteration. A prototype should not just be bolted onto the end of a design process. Incorporating the creation of a prototype into your daily design work allows new ideas to emerge and validates concepts quickly.
- Effective prototypes are disposable. Just like with any design deliverable, we are creating an artifact intended to express an idea to someone else (stakeholder, developer, user, etc). Once that design idea has been communicated, the prototype deliverable can be discarded. We don’t have to feel the burden of creating a masterpiece that will live on, and we certainly don’t have to work in production-level code.
- Effective prototypes are focused. We want to select the interactions of our design that really need to be prototyped. Look for the parts of your design that have of complexity. Look for interaction patterns repeated throughout the user’s experience. Look for the interactions that bring revenue to your product. A prototype that demonstrates these interactions will be the best use of your time and energy.
There are many, many, many tools for prototyping. We’ll demonstrate a few methods and discuss the pros and the cons. You will learn how to select the right tools and techniques for your specific team, organization, process and problem.
After the morning’s overview, participants will break into their teams and begin to build an interactive prototype. A mid-day pause will demonstrate the need to test a prototype with sample “users”. Following the test, iteration on the prototype will incorporate feedback and ultimately result in something that can be presented. Everyone will leave with a working prototype that they can show to others and the skills to incorporate this into their daily work.
Please bring your laptop.