Creating user interfaces with Balsamiq Mockups

A couple of days a go I surfed the Adobe Air marketplace and found the application Balsamiq Mockups.It looked interesting but I mainly installed it to test if my Adobe Air installation on my Ubuntu 10.04 64Bit machine is configured correctly. The installation worked properly, Balsamiq Mockups started.

Three days ago I decided to start a new little application, my first Air application (it is intended to be used on Adobe Air for Android). As a good developer should do I created a UML usecase diagram and a first draft of the application GUI side by side. Normally I do the GUI mockup using a piece of paper and a pen or a whiteboard in the company. But this time … aahhh, yes, there was this Balsamiq Mockup application.

I tried it and I like it! Balsamiq Mockup is easy to handle and seems to have the most important GUI components which I use for Flex / Air applications. The biggest benefit in comparison to a piece of paper or a whiteboard is I can change drafts whenever I want with only little effort because one can use Balsamiq Mockups like a vector orientated drawing application using layers. You don’t have to wipe something or scratch something out and your result is nice to look at.

This is the result of my brainstorming:

Of course I could have used some big application like MS Visio. But every time I use Visio I don’t feel comfortable. For me the user experience is not optimal and it takes me lots of time to find the correct shape and often the shapes I use don’t have the same lookalike.

For me Balsamiq Mockups is simple enough to use and powerful enough to fulfill my needs.

If you want to create a new application and you have to get a first draft of the GUI you should try Balsamic Mockups. Just follow the link and find out what you can do with this nice piece of software!

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