Reflection: Week #2 – Sketching

In my weekly meeting with my manager at work, we chat about what’s going well, what I’m working on, what challenges I am facing, and what I am doing to try to improve the situation around them. One of the things I am working on is a wiki post about our team’s recent offsite, the learnings from the meeting, and the incoming improvements to how we work. I explained that I wanted more feedback and edits from others before I posted it, because I was sure I was missing something. He told me that I should go ahead and post anyway, that the wiki is a place where edits are made constantly, and that information is changing all the time. He recognized that we were similar in the fact that we both want to try to perfect what we are working on before we post, and while it can be a quality that serves us well at some points, we need to learn to iterate and move forward.

This may sound like a tangential story, but it applies directly to me and how I feel about wireframes. As I started sketching different screens for the Lunch Money Buddy app, I realized I was taking too much time working at perfecting the details of the individual screens and spending less time on iterating/ideating on different structures and layouts. Determining the best fidelity when sketching can be difficult, especially when I’m trying to make things look just so… even if this is not the stage to be doing that. I tried to make sure I focused more on coming up with some iterations for each screen, rather than going into the minutiae for one screen at a time.

I will say, having prefab mobile sketching templates has been a bit of a mixed blessing; while I don’t have to constantly draw a device, I think the formality of the medium has caused me to over think the process of drawing up ideas! I would love to try creating copies of my common navigation/interaction elements to create a “toolbox” of items that I can just place from screen to screen (of course, this is not unlike pattern libraries in most wireframing software). Nevertheless, I look forward to getting feedback from my team members, and putting my sketches into something more digital and refined!

Until next week…

Reflection: Week #1 – User Journeys and Site Maps

Well, I’m back at the blogging again. Just a quick update on things since we last spoke:

  • I’m in my final semester of school at the Kent State UXD program.
  • I’m at a new job; I started as a Senior UX Researcher at HubSpot in mid-January
  • I’ll be blogging weekly reflections for my last full course, Interaction Design.

This course focuses on creating a mobile application for parents/guardians to manage their children’s lunch money account. The first week of the class focused on taking the information presented in two supplied personas and an application specifications document to create User Journeys and a “Site” (probably more apt to say “application”) Map. More details on the specifications and personas can be found at the respective links (PDF).

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