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    Entries in mobile (5)


    Touch UI: Gestural and mobile prototyping

    A lot of mobile development these days is about being able to iterate on your "here-and-now" product features but it's just as critical to be able to provide blue sky visioning of potential new directions for your product. I've been finding more and more reasons to activate my little tradition of doing animated gestural prototypes - particularly when we're going after money in some of the startups I've been involved in.

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    ux toolbox: interaction animations

    Early and often
    In touch-based design, prototyping early and often is critical. When your team is deep in coding it's helpful for someone on your team to be able to do quick animated prototypes to speed decision making with stakeholders and check-ins with users.

    Using animation it takes far fewer annotations and arrows to communicate most gestures and interactions - particularly if they have complex outcomes. And, in products where it takes a long time to code and physically prototype your interactions, it can save months of programming iteration by allowing early testing of the gestures and actions that are critical to your user experience.

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    ux toolbox: interaction storyboards

    For 2D we have things like wireframes, storyboards and mockups that communicate and allow us to iterate the visual design. In designing the architecture we have things such as site maps, database diagramming and even code frameworks. In 4D we have scripts, flowcharts, outlines, animations and prototypes.

    As I taught designers to code and coders to design it became clear that there had be better ways to communicate across those traditional divides. So I tinkered with some of my traditional documentation and came up with a way to communicate coding, layout and interaction behaviors visually, in a single document that I call an interaction storyboard.

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    ux details: co-designing database interactions

    know thy database
    There are very simple and specific reasons you should concern yourself as a UX and interaction designer with how your database and database communication is designed and functions.

    For instance, if you're doing cross-platform design, every byte and data package is critical. And I've never met a project that has succeeded across different platforms with a one-size fits all approach to data delivery. Desktop and tablet web experiences tend to require a much more interactive cycle of data exchange in order to appeal to a person's sense of timeliness and things happening safely and efficiently. But tablets in general cannot store as much information at one time - so how are you as the designer going to work with developers to create a strategy that fits your target devices?

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    mobile UX: plastic click vs metal glide

    The next time a commercial for any mobile device comes on, close your eyes. What do you hear? Interestingly, what you hear may say more about the "feel" of the product than any visual will ever be able to communicate.

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