FE Design Team MTG: Workflow + File Sharing Tuesday Oct. 06/09

Victoria Moulder vmoulder at sfu.ca
Mon Oct 5 01:55:10 UTC 2009

Hi Design Team:

At our next design team meeting this Tuesday, James will be introducing a centralized method of storing and sharing files (info yet to come), I'll be setting up a naming convention (info yet to come) and Kevin has suggested a method of working (see details below).

If you have ideas or comments on this topic, please let us know!!

Best, Vicki 

>>>>> Kevin's Proposed Working Method <<<<<<<<<

- To share files easily via the web
- To work on documents independently of each other 
- To integrate documents into a single document for communication purposes 
- To limit the replication of element design/positioning within documents

- Using illustrator to develop screen mockups, and InDesign to publish the documents

How will this work:
i) Using a common template illustrator file to generate wireframes (involving screen area, and outlines)
ii) The illustrator files will be assigned I.D. numbers and will be named as such: “ID1-1_mainScreen” (this translates into “page ID 1.1” that has the page title “Main Screen”. The page title should always be written in CamelCase)
iii) AIl files will use common swatch & symbols library for AI (so that buttons can be re-designed and those changes applied across all documents without having to copy and paste)
iv) Using descriptive naming conventions for layers in Illustrator is helpful, such as “background elements”, “Interactive elements”, ect. 
v) Each AI file will be placed within a directory called “artwork”, The swatches and symbols will be placed within a different directory called “library”
vi) To keep versioning in tact, the directory that contains the inDesign document,  the “artwork” and “library” folders will be given the name “FE_IA_diaKiosk_V2-1”. This translates into “Fluid project Information Architecture (IA) for the DIA kiosk version 2.1”. so it should be named: [project name abbreviation_document type abbreviation_mini-project name_version number]. To create new versions, the entire directory is duplicated, and the copy is placed within a directory called “FE_IA_diaKiosk_Archive”.
vii) The InDesign document will use the template provided, and link to the various Illustrator documents. The inDesign template consists of a title (with version number and changes tracked), a SiteMap (that displays linked pages, page ID and page Titles), and the wireframe tempaltes (consisting of the wireframes linked from the “artwork” folder, description side-bar, and  information nodes in yellow, and linking nodes in blue). 
viii) With each new version of the inDesign document, a PDF will be created and placed within the main directory, and will use the same name as the inDesign file (but with the “.pdf” file marker).
I have included a .zip folder containing an example of what I mean, please use this as reference. 

Reasons for InDesign and Illustrator:
• InDesign is cross platform (Windows & Mac). If you want everyone to play, then Visio AND Omnigraffle are quickly dismissed.
• InDesign is by far the most modular, with snippets, object libraries, and capabilities to dynamically link files to one another. 
• InDesign is for creating annotated documents. Additionally, InDesign’s embedded features for document variables, rapid TOC creation, and application of standard layouts enables designers to more rapidly produce more polished documents.
• InDesign supports more powerful grids, vector-based drawing tools, and layer organization than non-Adobe Creative Suite products, with a similar goal to that of typography: implying the standard visual conventions for laying out different page chunks.
• InDesign empowers collaboration across resources not limited to UI/Information Architects/Interaction Designers, but also content strategists, visual designers, and others.
• InDesign is a publishing platform built on collaboration. Visio and Omnigraffle are made for a single person to own and publish a document in isolation.

The big theme is that InDesign provides the only software tool on the market today by which you can unify delivery of user experience documentation across a range of disciplines. The result? Increased collaboration between designers, governance across designers, and credibility of the design organization outwardly to other groups. Otherwise, it’s every designer for themselves.

For more articles: 
Using Illustrator Layers:  http://toddwarfel.com/archives/wireframing-part-ii-illustrator-basics/

More information about the fluid-work mailing list