It can be scary to learn a new program, especially if you’ve never even heard of it. What if it’s too complicated to understand?
When it came to web projects in previous roles, I was mostly responsible for content population and reviewing/testing finished sites before they were presented to clients. As a Project Coordinator at Jackrabbit, I have a lot more opportunities during the different stages of web projects.
At Jackrabbit we use a program called Axure, which allows us to create interactive wireframes during the discovery phase of a website redesign. The wireframe plays an important role as it is the blueprint for the website and allows our design team to understand the intended functionality of the site. For reference, we’ve previously written about the definition of wireframes, along with how the wires turn into great web design.
When I first opened an Axure file I was overwhelmed to say the least. There are so many boxes, toolbars, and features. I was able to spend some time with an existing wireframe clicking around, checking out different features and seeing what the program is capable of. I quickly discovered that I found my new favorite thing to do at work! As an Axure newbie, I thought it would be helpful to share what I have learned so far.
Keep it simple: It’s easy for someone to get distracted by the way things look in a wireframe, so it’s best to add only what is necessary for understanding the structure of the page. The design stage will be where the client sees things like color, styles, and font recommendations.
Notes: It is important to add notes to describe any interactions you can’t achieve so the client will know that it is going to be addressed during design/development. These notes also help internally, providing the design and development teams a way to understand what you are trying to accomplish.
Here are a couple of my favorite interactions I’ve learned using the Axure Support training and tutorials!
Anchor links can be achieved by setting up an on click interaction to scroll to a widget. You can also use hot spot widgets if you want it to scroll to the space above a widget. This can help the client understand what an anchor link is and how it can be used on a scrolling page.
This simple tutorial shows how to create a lightbox interaction. Showing an interaction like this can help a client understand what is going to happen when the user clicks, rather than just viewing a separate page with a static lightbox.
This program is capable of so much more and I’m excited to continue learning!