Sunday, March 05, 2006

Getting Real

So "Getting Real" is the title of a new download-only book from 37Signals; here's a short quote from the introduction (PDF):

Getting Real is about skipping all the stuff that represents real (charts, graphs, boxes, arrows, schematics,
wireframes, etc.) and actually building the real thing.

Getting real is less. Less mass, less software, less features, less paperwork, less of everything that’s not essential (and most of what you think is essential actually isn’t).
So it's nice to hear someone else saying exactly what I've been pushing for years: just start with an idea for what you want and start building, in the medium of the eventual deployment, whether that's HTML, Flash, whatever. Don't "mock it up" in some other medium -- what's the point?
A static mockup offers no help in evaluating interactivitity, and translating the design to something real (there's that word again) later is time-consuming and unnecessary.

Make something, show it to people who'll be using it, listen to what they say, and incorporate that feedback. Lather, rinse, repeat.

All those old Visio wireframes and Photoshop "comps" are simply going to be file system clutter that at some point will require a "do we really need these?" decision from someone -- and I guarantee that person could be doing something more productive...


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