A Dark and Brainstormy Night
Kevin Cheng  

Brainstorming vs. Idea Seeding: The New OK/Cancel Process

October 21st, 2005 by Kevin Cheng :: 12 Comments

It’s been over a year since we’ve written any features and one in particular strikes me as terribly out dated. [The Making of OK/Cancel][1] was an article that detailed both our writing and art process for a given strip. If you’ve never read it, I highly recommend you do so first because it’s somewhat entertaining but more because it’s actually relevant to what I’m about to discuss.

A lot of times, brainstorming is seen as a positive addition to the design process. In the early stages, it’s great for generating ideas of what would make a good product or feature. Even when you do know what you’re building, designing alone can lead to stagnant ideas or getting stuck in loops that might be pretty easy to break out of with a touch of outside perspective. So one would think that for creating something like a comic, a group brainstorm would be a great way to kick off the writing process. Such was not the case.

[1]:http://www.ok-cancel.com/archives/feature/2004/01/the-making-of-okcancel.html “The Making of OK/Cancel”

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Tom Chi  

The end of WYSIWYG?

October 14th, 2005 by Tom Chi :: 8 Comments

We’ve had a lot of articles about web happenings recently, so it was high time for some good old client-app talk. Office has had its share of missteps in the past — the most notable of course is Clippy (although some would say it was this guy’s idea). That asidie, Microsoft Office 12 is starting to make some waves and there’s already buzz and FUD about all the UI changes that are coming. The UI has changed pretty drastically, and it has inspired a recent alertbox entitled “R.I.P. WYSIWYG”.

To summarize what has changed, toolbars and menus are gone. Instead you have the ribbon, which offers collections of tools centered around major tasks, and special contextual ribbons based on the type of object selected. New context menus and floaties help to bring useful verbs close to selected objects. There is also live-previewing which allows people to easily try permutations and options without having to commit changes. Lastly, many shared features have been standardized, and non-authoring features have been moved to a separate area. If you’ve got 40 minutes to spare you can watch the Channel 9 interview here (which is the most complete description of the changes that is publically available).

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OK/Cancel is a comic strip collaboration co-written and co-illustrated by Kevin Cheng and Tom Chi. Our subject matter focuses on interfaces, good and bad and the people behind the industry of building interfaces - usability specialists, interaction designers, human-computer interaction (HCI) experts, industrial designers, etc. (Who Links Here) ?