Prototyping


#1

Hello everyone!

I am a newbie in UX and am currently studying prototyping. While learning tools like Axure is easy, the actual prototyping is not. I want to build some portfolio but I don’t know what should I show on my prototypes.

I built a prototype of a small collaboration tool like Basecamp or something. I want to ask you to look at this prototype and tell me, what is not good with it. I am primarily interested in feedback on a prototype itself, like should I make links blue, should I add notes to some elements, etc. But I will be thankful for any comments. Maybe you can share some prototypes so I can see what it looks like when done right.

Prototype link: http://www.5mbytes.com/ux/teamwork/

By the way, I also will be happy to hear some general advice on how to build a good portfolio that will help me to find an internship or first job.


#2

Hey 5mbytes,
Welcome to the community.

I have had a look at your prototype and while I’m definitely not a UX expert, it looks like a really great start to me. It is clear and intuitive. If I was to give you any feedback it would be to consider getting someone to English edit the content for you. I envy anyone that speaks another language because I don’t, but I think that if you’re selling to and English speaking audience then slick content is pretty important.

Regarding portfolios, this article offers some handy advice.

I’m going to send some real UXers this way to give you some advice. Best of luck with your portfolio.


#3

Hello,

Great start :slight_smile:

I had a look at your prototype and I have a question. Do I have to ‘login’ before I can see a demo? I would prefer to see that before parting with my personal details.

I also think the landing page would benefit from some sort of navigation. Don’t rely on that side bar that Axure provides to show you how you’ve structured your files - that’s all it’s for.

Also, I’m not sure that the ‘nice drawing of a crowd’ adds value to what you are trying to achieve. I would expect to see screenshots of the actual thing itself.

Agree with Hawk about the content, it could definitely use some work but that’s easily done :slight_smile:

Hope this helps


#4

Thank you for your answers!

> to consider getting someone to English edit the content for you
Yeah, content management and English is not my strong side, so I assume in real projects someone other than me will write texts. But thanks for advice, it’s still a good idea to show my texts to native speakers so my portfolio works will look better.

> Regarding portfolios, this article offers some handy advice.
Nice article, thanks!

> Do I have to ‘login’ before I can see a demo?
Good question. I like it when I can see some demo before I sign up, but I forgot to add something like this to my prototype. Will fix it.

> I also think the landing page would benefit from some sort of navigation.
As I see it, landing page is for new users who visit this page to see what the product is. After you registered and logged in, you see different interface with different navigation. About landing navigation itself, I am not focused on it in this prototype, main goal was to show interface of a product inside. Of course, it might have some pages like support, manual, our customers etc. Maybe I should show them at least as links with descriptions. Yes, I will add some links.

> I’m not sure that the ‘nice drawing of a crowd’ adds value to what you are trying to achieve
It is just some idea of how it might look in my imagination. And yes, Im not sure too =). In fact I think it’s a question that should be answered with a/b testing, like whats better, drawing or screenshot, “give it a try” or “sign up” etc.

Thanks again, I got some positive mood reading your answers, looking forward to make a nice portfolio!


#5

Hi 5mbytes.

I think you’re really asking two questions here: “what makes a good prototype?” and “what makes a good portfolio?” The answer is not the same for each question.

In terms of what makes a good portfolio, Hawk mentioned Luke’s article which is definitely a good start. Personally I wouldn’t include a link to an interactive prototype from a portfolio. Well, perhaps I would, but I wouldn’t make the prototype itself the centrepiece. The point about a portfolio is that it should demonstrate your thought process. Just having a prototype online and expecting people to infer your thought process from clicking through it isn’t going to cut it. You need to describe the project brief, and annotate the prototype, and provide context for the tasks that it simulates, and show multiple versions (perhaps as screenshots), and discuss your design decisions, and basically tell us the story about the journey you went on and how your prototype evolved over time and why you made the decisions that you made. The point is to demonstrate to the person reading your portfolio that you know what you’re doing, and you can’t do that by giving them a deliverable and saying “look what I made!”

This is true of a real design project—communicating the design is as important as the design itself.

In terms of what makes for a good prototype, without the brief or the context or the story to go with it, it’s hard to judge. If this was a prototype that you created in 30 minutes based on limited information about your intended users’ behaviour, it’s probably a suitable stepping stone for showing to users and getting a first round of feedback. If it was a third iteration and you still hadn’t dug deep in parts of the functionality that are key to the tasks that it allows you to perform, then it would probably be a poor prototype. But we don’t know, so we can’t judge! :slight_smile: At the moment looking at this standalone prototype demonstrates your ability to use Axure to simulate some functionality—but that’s about it.

Hope that makes sense.


#6

Hi mattymcg.

Thanks for your post, it definitely makes sense, I hope now I have some direction to move on.
So I have another question. Is this close to what you are talking about: http://www.5mbytes.com/ux/cv/rubusd.html ? This is more about usability but still, is this approach to show my thoughts correct?

Thanks!