Posts Tagged ‘sitemap’

Speech Bubble User Flow

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

The Speech Bubble User Flow by Barnabas, is a hybrid representation that combines a sitemap, persona and user flow all into one. The idea starts off by overlaying simple and short comments made by a persona in the form speech bubbles on top of a structured sitemap. More so, the speech bubbles are ordered chronologically and so flow through one by one. In the built Axure Demo that has been generated, the sitemap pages are also linked to the wireframes which makes it easier to switch from the generic to the specific. Barnabas has been exploring Personas that “could talk” in a few other forms as well, as the Complex Speech Bubble Persona and the Commented Sitemaps show.

My take on this deliverable would be that Personas can sometimes get lost once a project builds momentum. Possibly what Barnabas is doing is helping the Persona to live a little bit longer and inspire the team a bit more as the Persona’s comments pop up throughout the project. One thing I do wonder about is how this would work though if there was a second or third scenario for the same user type, as sometimes I feel that interactive projects are composed of many little separate user stories and not just one. Either way, good stuff and thanks for sharing!

If you would like to tweak the deliverable, the author has been kind enough to share the actual source Axure file as a downloadable template.

Credits: Barnabas Nagy

Site Architecture Stencil for OmniGraffle

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

Austin recently came up with a sitemap or site architecture OmniGraffle stencil that makes room for some extra description. In the stencil, beside each page title there is now a little space for an explanation of what the page is about. He shared the downloadable stencil which can be obtained right from his site. Awesome. Thanks!

In his own words:

I’ve used EightShapes’s brilliant Unify deliverable system for about four years. It’s excellent.

Out of the box, Unify is designed for use with Adobe InDesign. Lately, however, I’ve been site mapping in sweet, luscious OmniGraffle, and I created a Unify-inspired OmniGraffle stencil for making site maps.

But, there’s one problem with lots of site maps.

In your typical site map, you show the page’s title adjacent to the little box for that page. Unfortunately, clients and developers and designers don’t always know what kind of page the page will be. In other words, if you have a page titled, “Orders”, it’s not clear if that’s a dashboard, a list of orders, or even a form form for adding an order.

So I added a line for every page on the site map where you can offer a very brief description of the page.

Credits: Austin Govella

Omnigraffle Sitemap Generator

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

The Omnigraffle Sitemap Generator is a script that auto creates nicely looking sitemaps from a given XML file. It’s really just a simple byproduct from the guys over at Fuzzy Math. If this is your cup of tea, Jason, also wrote up a table generator script. Hope this saves someone some time.

Download the Sitemap Generator

Credits: Jason Kunesh


Thursday, October 15th, 2009

Combine wireframes and sitemaps together and you get something like this following sample from Jason. Wiremaps or siteframes? :) In the man’s own words:

First, the colors aren’t so significant. I just ran out of yellow. :) Underneath each sticky is a few other stickies from previous revisions. As time went on, things changed and so did the stickies on this page.

This document started off as ideas scribbled on a whiteboard. We devised an info architecture that involved controlling the user path by allowing them to drill down (vertically on the sheet) and across ( horizontally) but not diagonally. It’s not super clear, but everyone who needs to know understands the user flow through these pages.

There are 12 new pages that need to be created, as well as revising another half dozen or so. These sticky-frames also act as a site map, or at the least, a site map of templates.

Credits: Jason Robb

Structure Juxtaposed Wireframe

Monday, April 13th, 2009

While designing the site, Dawn has come up with a navigation scheme which displays the site structure along with the current location at the very top of the interface. As we’d expect, these ideas have been naturally placed into the wireframe. What I find interesting however is the juxtaposition between the site structure and the wireframe at a more general level. I mean, this type of view could just as well be used even if the interface did not contain such a navigation. After all, seeing the site structure along side the wireframe in itself provides a richer picture. Similarly to showing needs alongside wireframes, perhaps seeing structure or user flows more closely could enrich the context.

A second thing I find interesting here, is the use of colour to suggest the current location of the user. Here, yellow has been used to hint at the currently selected item. This brings back thoughts about colouring clickables in wireframes. Just as actionable elements in a wireframe could have a reserved colour, perhaps a second standardized colour could be reserved to suggest selected items.

Credits: Dawn Bovasso

Content Sitemaps

Wednesday, March 11th, 2009

While still in a highly conceptual mode of thought during site mapping, already rough ideas begin to emerge as to how particular pages will look like or what they might contain. Often these ideas go beyond a simple one word page label. Here is an example which captures such ideas textually in more detail. This interesting view combines structural page representations with textual content descriptions – a merger of sorts between a site map and a content inventory.

Credits: Lewis Litanzios

Sticky Sitemaps

Friday, February 27th, 2009

The need for flexible design documents such as sitemaps has already been noted in the past. In this example however, instead of using the computer, a very similar style of exploring and representing site structure has been accomplished with the use of sticky notes. Indentation has been applied to the stickies in order to suggest multiple levels of structure. Why not just do it on the computer then? Well, I think that such a rough approach invites more collaboration and input from others. Paper, sketching and stickies all invite change and feedback more so than computer based tools. Here is what Dave has to say:

It is an early stage in the development process, and the use of post-its allows quick iterative thinking, and opens collaboration across the project team. Taking photos at different stages meant that versions can be kept. This was the final version, before being drawn up in Illustrator for client sign-off.

Credits: Dave Needham

Sitemap References

Sunday, February 15th, 2009

In a way, sitemaps can be thought of as a unifying table of contents of an information architecture project. They provide a way to zoom out and view the whole organization from a bird’s eye point of view. As interesting as things look from the clouds, one can fly around only for so long, and information architects often also allow to come back down to the wireframe or page level. This zooming back in is often done through some form of referencing. Here in this sample I began referencing at least three things: wireframes, content inventories, and additional sitemap pages. Wireframes are referenced with a red “W#” stamp, content inventories with a “C#” stamp, and additional pages with upper corner blocks. Some time ago in the past I also referenced user scenarios at this level. The list of references could possibly be expanded to accommodate other item as well.

Credits: Jakub Linowski

Page Level Wireflows

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009

Tara has been designing the Mozilla Community Store and did a couple of wireflows at the page level. Having shrunk down the wireframes to thumbnails, this diagram provides a very nice overview of page-to-page link relationships that the user might take. nform Trading Cards however warn us that these documents could be very labour intensive if the design changes (which I also experienced). Now what if this view was automatically generated with our favourite design tools?

Credits: Tara Shahian

Flexible Sitemaps

Tuesday, January 6th, 2009

When thinking about high level web site structures, we often rearrange content or page items. I at least, place page holders here and there, look at new content, and then revisit the structure as new knowledge or insights are generated. This is especially so during the early phases of site mapping. In order to imbue these documents with more agility and flexibility, sometime in the past I developed the habit of avoiding arrows and line connectors. I felt that the lines slowed me down as they added an extra step to the work flow. Each time I would reorder a page item, I would then also have to rearrange the lines as well. Instead I began using indentation, tone and alignment to suggest hierarchy. Perhaps this tactic is not perfect, as changing the background colour of an item also requires additional time. Nevertheless, it’s still one step closer in the direction of making documentation more flexible to change.

Credits: Jakub Linowski