Successive approximation method

Successive approximation method

The method of successive approximations. Web Designer Knowledge Base
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Michael CEO&Founder


Printed 2009-10-20

... And so, after reading the brief, you put a blank sheet of paper in front of you and begin to draw a prototype. Eeee ... Mmm ... .. where to start? 

I use the method that I call the method of successive approximations. If you studied physics or mathematics, then you understand what I mean. 

The bottom line is that I do not start to make a full-fledged prototype right away. Here's what the workflow looks like:
1. Read the brief and write out a list of key page elements on paper. Such a list is always there: on the site (usually) there should be a hat with a logo, a promotional block with the best services, contacts and so on. Here are such large elements you need to write out 10 pieces (depending on the size of the page) so that they are always in front of your eyes; 
2. Sort these items by importance. Which of them is the main, and what is the secondary? 
3. Next, draw a rectangle that will designate our workspace; 
4. Start arranging the drawn objects in this rectangle. Roughly, with contours - here is the area of __the logo, here is the silhouette of a person, and so on. 

Already at this stage the MAIN OBJECTIVE OF THE INFORMATION SITE DESIGN is solved priorities. Pay attention, no layout is done here, not even a prototype is made. This is just a visual image that conveys the content of a future site. But now you can understand that, for example, one block will be 2 times larger than the other, and the third should be higher than these two. 

Such sketches sometimes have to be made not one or two - depending on the complexity of the project, depending on how typical or unique it is. 

5. When a more or less suitable option is found and it is clear that the emphasis has been placed, look at this picture from afar. You should see the main blocks - key headlines, the main photo - and inaudible details around. If there is such an impression when looking from afar, it means that the stage has been completed successfully and you can move on. 

6. Take a new piece of paper. Making a new sketch! We look at the sketch already made and begin to redraw it. Also in the contours, also in pencil, but with greater accuracy. Pay attention not only to the location and size of the elements, but also to their shape, compatibility. At this stage, we move from the layout of the design to the graphic. 

There may be several such iterations, depending on the complexity of the project. Usually two are enough: a very rough sketch-sketch and a normal pencil sketch with reasonable detail. 

The second sketch can already be shown to the client, and it actually closes the issues related to the layout. You can handle it further, as with a children's coloring book: add color and details to an existing workpiece. On the live layout in PSD, font sizes, some little things will change, but the basis will already be laid in the prototype. 


More about prototypes:

2 main ways
The method of successive approximations
Prototype formula
Semantic link
Testing the prototype < br>

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