Digital Projects are taken up for materializing business objectives or for bringing in shaping certain creative ideas. The project involves making proper web page layouts by arranging the content of the website that may include elements of the interface, the navigational systems and the manner in which they work together. Wireframing tools are applied for the better accomplishment of a particular purpose. Wireframe is also known as Page Schematic or Screen Blueprint. It is a visual guide for drawing out a skeleton of the website through a framework.
Wireframe is a 3D skeletal model that represents only lines and vertices. It does not involve style, color or graphic. It indicates the allocation of space, content prioritization and available functionalities. It transforms the intangible concepts or ideas into a desired tangible end product. The concept underlying the structure is known as ‘information architecture’. For initiating architecture of digital projects, flow charts, site maps and screen designs are used. Such models are also used for making prototypes of mobile apps.
Wireframing is the first step towards the development of apps. Through this, the functionalities of an app could be well visualized so that clarification if required could be made. For architecting a mobile app or developing a website, of the many tools available, the following can be best utilized, by making use of a scale better known as KISS, the acronym of ‘Keeping It Simple, Stupid’.
1. Balsamiq is one of the most popular used tools for wireframing and mock up building. It is loved by one and all for its high focus on usability. Its scores an almost 10.
2. Infragistics is clean and simple with a wide range of functionalities. However, it needs certain learning curve initially. It has a KISS scale of 9/10.
3. Proto.io is suitable for larger apps needing more functionality and has a KISS scale of 8/10.
4. JustInMind is suitable for advanced prototypes and involves more difficulty when compared to Infragistics.
5. Ki4 Fluid can be used for making a simple wireframe more quickly and has a KISS level of 7/10.
The following are the uses of wireframes:
Since wireframe connects the ‘information architecture’ to the visual design, there may be overlapping of roles of professionals that in turn may lead to conflict and controversies. Therefore, it calls for collaborative efforts. It actually indicates only a skeletal structure and is difficult for the actual screen layouts to be depicted. Moreover, since it is only a static representation, it becomes difficult for displaying the interactive details, effectively.
Depending upon the levels of details, wireframes could be categorized as Low Fidelity or High Fidelity. The former uses rectangles and labeling, has less detail but is quick to produce. The latter incorporates a higher level of details, resembles more closely to the design of the real page and takes longer time to create.
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