Wireframes are Works of Fantasy (Pecha Kucha talk)

Last week I presented at UK UPA‘s Pecha Kucha Night (20 slides x 20 seconds):

Most wireframes are works of fantasy: more aspiration than design solution. Fantasy wireframes lead to broken experiences, unmet goals, and angry stakeholders. But content strategy can help. Learn how UX professionals can use content strategy to design user experiences that work in real life, not just in a pretty wireframe.

3 thoughts on “Wireframes are Works of Fantasy (Pecha Kucha talk)”

  1. May I present a counter-point? I think wireframes often don’t work because people don’t know what they’re for. They’re not supposed to be “pretty”, they’re supposed to be devoid of visual design, they’re supposed to allow teams to quickly refine and agree upon the interaction of a flow/product. Wireframes are easy and fast to change, and as long as people understand what they’re for, they can save a lot of time down the road. Good wireframes allow you to move on to visual design and focus on that without having to worry (too much) about the interaction.

    I do agree on the value of content strategy in this process though — wireframes with lorem ipsum are evil 🙂

  2. Hi Rian,

    Thanks for your comment.

    The problem I’m talking about is wireframes that help “refine and agree upon interaction/flow”, as you put it, but aren’t accompanied by a realistic plan for making that interaction/flow/experience happen over time. Because that requires content strategy: substance, workflow, governance.

    Just because we can all agree that an interaction or flow is desirable, doesn’t mean we’ve committed to a plan to actually create that experience over time. Without a realistic content strategy, that wireframe is just an aspiration.

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