Saturday, April 04, 2009

UIEtips: Harnessing the Power of Annotations - An Interview with Dan Brown

The use and value of annotations ...

"Right now, in a conference room somewhere, there’s a team of designers standing in front of a whiteboard, thinking about a cool new design idea. It’s highly unlikely that, as the team is standing there, everyone is silent. I’m betting that at least one member is walking through the proposed design, pointing and gesturing, helping everyone get on the same page.

Unfortunately, we can’t always communicate our design ideas that way. We’re not always in the same room, in front of the design. Sometimes we have to communicate through documents. Sometimes, we need our thoughts to last beyond the ephemeral moment of speech.

That’s where annotations come in. Annotations are critically important to our design process, since they help us augment the work product to communicate things that aren’t readily apparent in the diagram itself.

Yet we almost never talk about them. Is there a right way to do them? Are there ways to do them better?

For today’s UIEtips, I had a chance to sit down with Dan Brown, co-Founder and co-Principal of EightShapes. Dan wrote the fabulous book, Communicating Design, and he’s given a ton of thought to the best ways we can get our design ideas out to the team, so they have them when they’re making important decisions. Read Dan’s interview.

It’s no surprise that Dan’s full-day workshop, Communicating Design: Essential Deliverables for Highly Effective Teams, is one of the most popular at the upcoming UIE Web App Summit. More than ever, teams need every tool they can get to be effective and Dan’s toolbox is the envy of us all. Find out more about his workshop and other great sessions."    (Continued via UIE, Jared Spool)    [Usability Resources]

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