6.831 • User Interface Design and Implementation

Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Fall Semester, 2006

GR2: Design Sketches

Due in 1 week, at 5:00pm on Tuesday, October 3rd, 2006, by email.

Design Sketches

In this group assignment, you will continue the design of your term project by doing the following:


Your design sketches will be graded on how well you've described them, how completely they cover your task analysis, and how diverse they are. Two designs that differ only in minor ways will not receive as much credit. The designs themselves won't be graded on usability for this assignment, but your evaluation of their usability will be graded.

Take time to brainstorm a variety of different interface designs, sketching them by hand on paper or a whiteboard.  Then choose the ones that seem the most promising to hand in.

When you draw your sketches, don't get bogged down in details like wording, icon appearance, or layout. Keep things simple. Focus on the conceptual model you're trying to communicate to the user, and think about your task analysis: what the user needs to do and how they can do it. Putting too much time into designing low-level details is pointless if big things have to change on the next design iteration.

Hand-drawn sketches are encouraged. There are a number of ways to get hand-drawn sketches into your report and wiki page. You can draw on paper and use a scanner to convert it to electronic form, or you can draw on a whiteboard and take a careful picture of it. There are scanners and smart whiteboards located around campus; the Scanners page on the wiki lists the ones we know about, add more if you know of any. You can also use a digital camera to take high-resolution pictures of your sketches. In any case, please make sure your sketches are readable, and crop them appropriately. If you're using a whiteboard, be sure to do a test drawing first to make sure you can get a good picture of what you draw, before you spend a lot of time drawing your sketches only to discover that the pictures are unreadable or washed out.

Your report should contain all of the pieces listed above: Scenarios, Preliminary Designs, Storyboards, and Evaluation.


Add the following parts to your project's wiki page:

What to Hand In

This assignment has two deliverable components: your written report, and an update to your wiki page. Both must be complete by the deadline. Email your report as a PDF file to 6831handin@csail.mit.edu and include GR2 in the subject line. There are free software products for printing documents out to PDF files.