Preparing a presentation on Fireworks

2 Feb 2009 - 7:36pm
5 years ago
14 replies
2042 reads
Al Abut
2009

I'm getting back into public speaking and giving a short presentation
next month on my design process in Fireworks, so I thought I'd
collect some questions from the list in advance. I'll be sticking to
prototyping rather than my design process as a whole, but will be
covering my typical workflow for both rough wireframes and high
fidelity/visually polished designs.

Anyone in the bay area is welcome to attend:

http://www.meetup.com/Fire-On-The-Bay/calendar/9583191/

So, any questions you'd like to see me try to demo (whether
specifically about FW or not)?

- -
Al Abut
- -
interaction designer, crimefighter
http://alabut.com
http://twitter.com/alabut
- -

Comments

3 Feb 2009 - 4:12am
yahnyinlondon
2008

Is there any chance that you would be able to share some of this
presentation for someone non-local? I'm based in London but am very
interested to hear about any new Fireworks techniques.

Cheers,
Amanda

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Posted from the new ixda.org
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3 Feb 2009 - 11:23am
Josh Evnin
2005

I'm becoming more and more interested in prototyping in FW, and would love
the basic questions to be answered:

- Why would I use FW at all? I've got other tools (and plenty of paper!),
so why would I consider the switch?
- Is there any way to get started quickly or to bootstrap the process?

Then, I'd love to see some of your examples, but only after you've sold me
on the whys and hows.

Like Amanda, I'm not in the Bay Area but would love to see what you come up
with. Any way you could spread the talk more widely?

Josh

On Tue, Feb 3, 2009 at 3:12 AM, Amanda Jahn <yahny at yahnyinlondon.com> wrote:

> Is there any chance that you would be able to share some of this
> presentation for someone non-local? I'm based in London but am very
> interested to hear about any new Fireworks techniques.
>
> Cheers,
> Amanda
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the new ixda.org
> http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=38092
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
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--
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3 Feb 2009 - 12:51pm
russwilson
2005

The issues I have (and I've expressed them in several of my own blog posts
including
http://www.dexodesign.com/2008/11/07/review-16-user-interface-prototyping-tools/)
are:

1) There is a lot of overlap even within Adobe products -- Illustrator,
InDesign, Photoshop, Fireworks, Dreamweaver, the new "Catalyst", Flash... I
can probably do the same thing 10 different ways with different permutations
of these products
2) Fireworks - why? (read: "I *want* to like it and understand it better...
help me...")
3) Why is it so difficult to open Fireworks out of the box and prototype a
hierarchical tree?

And like others, would love to see a copy of your presentation if available.

Best regards,
Russ

Russell Wilson
Vice President of Product Design, NetQoS
Blog: http://www.dexodesign.com

On Tue, Feb 3, 2009 at 10:23 AM, Josh Evnin <jevnin at gmail.com> wrote:

> I'm becoming more and more interested in prototyping in FW, and would love
> the basic questions to be answered:
>
> - Why would I use FW at all? I've got other tools (and plenty of paper!),
> so why would I consider the switch?
> - Is there any way to get started quickly or to bootstrap the process?
>
> Then, I'd love to see some of your examples, but only after you've sold me
> on the whys and hows.
>
> Like Amanda, I'm not in the Bay Area but would love to see what you come up
> with. Any way you could spread the talk more widely?
>
> Josh
>
> On Tue, Feb 3, 2009 at 3:12 AM, Amanda Jahn <yahny at yahnyinlondon.com>
> wrote:
>
> > Is there any chance that you would be able to share some of this
> > presentation for someone non-local? I'm based in London but am very
> > interested to hear about any new Fireworks techniques.
> >
> > Cheers,
> > Amanda
> >
> >
> > . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> > Posted from the new ixda.org
> > http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=38092
> >
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> > To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> > Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> > List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> > List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
> >
>
>
>
> --
> http://josh.ev9.org/weblog
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

3 Feb 2009 - 8:40pm
Al Abut
2009

I'd definitely like to capture the presentation, whether live with
something like ustream, qik or etc, or post-event with video or
narrated slides. Given the interest, I'll post more info closer to
the event - I think there might be an Adobe Connect setup going on
too.

As for "why Fireworks?", that seems to be a common question and
I'm glad I asked the list in advance, since I'll have a few non-FW
friends coming and preparing some info about that will do them good
too.

One thing I've realized is the reason for the disconnect between FW
and a lot of designers, at least those that found out about it
recently rather than way back when it was a Macromedia product: FW is
not really a prototyping tool, that's just Adobe's (fairly recent)
marketing to set it aside from the rest of their product line up.
Which explains why it comes across as so hard to pick up if you're
used to a dedicated tool like omnigraffle or balsamiq - those tools
are made to 1) be really easy to pick up so you can start designing
right away and 2) focused on very rough layouts as visual
deliverables, they're not Photoshop competitors.

What *is* FW good for then? I actually like it more for making the
final visual polish and design, since I hate Photoshop and
Illustrator so much. Both of those tools were made primarily for
non-web design purposes and it shows in their overall complexity. PS
will always be for photographers first, designers second, and maybe
video effects artists third, and Illy is mainly for artists and
drawing. Yes you *can* use it for web stuff, it's just not made
solely for that, plus jumping between the two apps is a pain, whereas
FW is completely focused on making web layouts and you only need one
app for making both vector and raster art.

So my choice of using FW for prototyping is most definitely not a
statement about it being a great prototyping tool overall, just that
it works great for me personally because I can go all the way from
wireframes to final design within the same app. That's going to be
one of the main things I was going to demo - recycling art assets
from the wireframes to the final visual mockups.

- -
Al Abut
- -
interaction designer, crimefighter
http://alabut.com
http://twitter.com/alabut

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Posted from the new ixda.org
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3 Feb 2009 - 5:33pm
Jai Godara
2008

I believe it would be very helpful if you could include some advice on
Fireworks' utility for different prototyping stages in design
process, such as say wireframes, mid-fidelity prototype with certain
interactive features, and fully-interactive prototype?

In addition, if you could compare Fireworks against other tools
available for these phases, even better!

and yes, I am going to be there for your presentation =)

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Posted from the new ixda.org
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3 Feb 2009 - 4:53pm
Marc Truitt
2008

I use Fireworks a lot mostly traditional Internet or RIA type. Fireworks CS4 allows us to generate clickable mockups and export them to PDF's, HTML, SWF's and MXML (for you Flex developers) The output to AIR is really nice.

http://www.adobe.com/products/fireworks/features/?view=topnew

Once you get sign off on the design you have all your graphical elements right there inside Fireworks and they can be used by your developers.

Marc Truitt

________________________________________________________________
Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
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4 Feb 2009 - 12:57pm
Julie Strothman
2008

I use FW for prototyping, but I don't have consistent efficient
workflow rules regarding elements that change somewhat from
page-to-page, such as navigation. I use symbols and start out with an
all-closed example of nav, then share across pages and then detach on
each page and adjust to be page-specific. I hope this is not the best
way to do this and would love to learn efficiency at this level w/FW.
But then I live in VT, so I won't be there for your preso. :-)

And text styles? Are there such a thing as text styles? Yesterday I
had a request to make all type in a prototype larger so that people
with macular degeneration can read the prototype when printed for
quick testing. Not a problem for symbols, but for the rest...

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4 Feb 2009 - 9:51am
Rob Rubinoff
2008

Some great links in this thread - thanks to all!! I was unaware of
balsamiq - looks like a great tool.

I use fw and have for several years - even before adobe started
touting it as a prototyping tool. Its great for more hifi wireframes
etc, but I favor indesign (and freehand before) for lofi wireframing
and initial concepting.

I'm very interested to learn how others are using the program.

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4 Feb 2009 - 5:24pm
contenthouse
2008

Hi Al,

Fireworks strength as prototyping tool is its ability to save as PNG
in layers. This feature is great especially if your review process
goes through many iterations.

It works great if you are presenting using HTML using hotspots and
javascript.

You can easily edit your graphic source files without having to redo
your entire presentation script.

Great articles on doing wireframes in FW:

http://www.adobe.com/devnet/fireworks/articles/cooper_prototyping.html?devcon=f4

http://tv.adobe.com/#vi f1498v1659

http://tv.adobe.com/#vi f1498v1661

http://tv.adobe.com/#vi f1498v1660

http://tv.adobe.com/#vi f1498v1658

Peter Chung

Sr. IA/UI Designer, Wells Fargo

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6 Feb 2009 - 9:10am
Jessica Wittebort
2009

Al Abut,
I really look forward to seeing the capture of your presentation. I
recently switched to Fireworks to prototype discrete interactions,
and I'm really interested in applying these techniques to broader
wireframing process. I do most of my flat design work with Fireworks,
so it seems like a sensible option.

Please keep me in the loop regarding where I might watch the
presentation.

Cheers,
jessica wittebort

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17 Feb 2009 - 3:02pm
Al Abut
2009

We'll be broadcasting my presentation on prototyping at Adobe tonight
via Acrobat Connect and the url is:

http://experts.na3.acrobat.com/febfotb/

I hope this thing'll be captured for later playback but just in case
it isn't, we're kicking things off around 6:45pm PST if you want to
watch live. I'll also try to post more material online later.

Al Abut
--
interaction designer, crimefighter
http://alabut.com
http://twitter.com/alabut
--

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Posted from the new ixda.org
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18 Feb 2009 - 5:04am
yahnyinlondon
2008

Julie - Might be worth checking the find and replace tool, you can
actually find a specific typeface and size and replace it with a
different typeface, style and size.
It's still not perfect but it does the job!

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Posted from the new ixda.org
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17 Feb 2009 - 11:22pm
Chris Rivard
2005

I've been testing a few different prototyping tools including
Fireworks CS4. There are a couple of online tutorials at Adobe - the
one I remember was with David Hogue from Fluid (dude, where's my hop
up!?).

It seems like the real power comes with the ability to simulate rich
interactions. Clickable .PDF's can be made with Omnigraffle. I
recently gave Protoshare and Axure a test drive. The ability to
quickly simulate mouse events was *very* easy in Axure, easier than
Fireworks. Fireworks definitely allows more flexibility in drawing,
but tool switching and general navigation slowed things down.

I'm interested to catch this presentation when it is posted.

Cheers,
Chris

Christopher Rivard
http://www.chrisrivard.com/
http://twitter.com/clearwired

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Posted from the new ixda.org
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18 Feb 2009 - 12:15pm
Al Abut
2009

And for those that couldn't make it live, here's the archived
presentation:

http://experts.na3.acrobat.com/p13197444/

It definitely is a bit rambling and almost entirely lacking in bullet
points, like a proper Tufte acolyte :) but I'd definitely love any
questions or feedback, since the audience skewed (understandably)
towards technical questions about Fireworks more than it did about
overall UX issues.

Al Abut
--
interaction designer, crimefighter
http://alabut.com
http://twitter.com/alabut
--

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Posted from the new ixda.org
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