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Regenerating ProdPad: working together for a brilliant user experience

Posted by Janna Bastow
August 29, 2014

A few weeks ago, I filled you in on the inner workings of our roadmapping proccess for our current project: ProdPad Regenerated. We’ve come along way already since then, and today I’d like to talk to you about how we are conceiving these changes to ProdPad collaboratively.

To help demonstrate the process in action, I’m giving you a bit of a sneak preview of what we’re working on. First of all, here’s a mockup for a new Idea Canvas being collaborated on in ProdPad. Our UX wizard, Mojca, created this mockup using OmniGraffle and exported it to image files. Then she uploaded it to ProdPad so that we could all wade in with comments.

ProdPad Mockup - Idea Canvas

Direct interaction with the file itself means we can highlight the smallest of details and be very specific about what we’re discussing. For the Idea Canvas mockup, Simon and I have been able to raise questions on very specific elements and reconfirm what’s critical and what’s secondary to this regeneration project. For example, in the next version of the Idea Canvas design we’ll try to focus more heavily on team discussion than specs as this is what’s more important for most users.

OmniGraffle is one of our best friends when it comes to collaborative wireframing but it certainly isn’t the only tool we use. The very earliest mockups added to ProdPad used good old-fashioned pen and paper. A simple photo upload and we are able to discuss direction for our new interface in exactly the same way. Keeping track of versions in the design process is hugely important. When changes are tracked rather than overwritten, no shred of innovation is lost. If you make a suggestion that doesn’t work when pen is committed to paper or finger to mouse, you can revisit previous versions and re-evaluate.

And that’s why we’re making some changes to how we do mockups in ProdPad too. What you’re looking at here is in fact a mockup of the new mockups view (how’s that for meta!).

ProdPad Mockup - Mockups

For the new mockups, we’ve been exploring how we can make earlier versions more prominent so that you can follow the evolution of the design process more easily. And as for every redesigned element in the regenerated ProdPad, this process is about striving for a smoother and more intuitive user experience for product managers and secondary users alike. I’m currently working with core ProdPad users who signed up to our beta programme to get their feedback into the next iterations of these mockups.

So that about wraps it up for this instalment on how we design collaboratively. Next, I’ll be sharing with you our steps and experiences of building out final designs from scratch. If you have any questions for me on ProdPad regenerated or our processes, drop them in the comments below or tweet me @simplybastow

And if you’d like to get onto the beta list for the new release, send us a message here

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Jessica Britz
Jessica Britz
September 8, 2014 5:02 pm

You mention a pdf as a mockup in your example, but currently, mockups can only be added in image format. Will the ability to add mockups of other files types be part of this enhancement?

Thanks.