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Visio contains a Windows interface template, at least in the professional
version 5.0 that I use. I have used it to build paper prototype user
interfaces. However, it is not complete and does not provide a 100% accurate
representation of each widget. But it gets you up and running quickly.
Doug would have the fun job of keeping the hand-drawn version of the i/f in
synch. with the real code.
The interface diagram would then not look quite like the real one -- this
makes it a little more difficult for the user to relate the two. I recall
the NeXT interface used Display PostScript to render screen objects. This
meant screen captures were perfectly scalable -- and to my eyes, just didn't
>From what I understand of Doug's original message, I would not want to
attempt either approach (vectorize or draw); I'd stick to bitmaps, and crop
to areas of interest to reduce the need to scale down.
I'm not sure I see the need anyway. If users zoom in on-screen, then the
characters will be blocky, but readable at well over 1:1 zoom. If the image
is zoomed out to the stage where you can't read small on-screen text, then
scalable fonts will also be unreadable at that level. If you're sizing for
print, you can scale down quite a lot and still read small print; if you do
have problems (e.g. you're using a lower res. device such as a laser
printer) then use callouts to focus on areas of detail -- simpler than
vectorising, and easier to re-do when your interface changes.
> One solution:
> It is possible to create all the elements needed to draw a
> Windows screen,
> and then use them to "build" a screen shot. I've done this to mock up
> interfaces that don't exist yet.
> As I said, I've done similar work using Corel Draw to mock up
> an interface for a project. It's a lot of work, and probably isn't worth
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