Fireworks CS4: Rapid Prototyping

with Jim Babbage
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Fireworks CS4: Rapid Prototyping
Video duration: 0s 4h 17m Intermediate


In Fireworks CS4: Rapid Prototyping, designer Jim Babbage deconstructs real-world examples that show the interoperability between Fireworks and other Adobe applications. Jim lays out the schedule for good prototyping, from wireframing to storyboarding to creating multi-page mockups for design feedback. Along the way, he covers advanced imaging topics, such as adding interactivity for a realistic mockup and exporting a Flex mockup as an FXG file. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Using screen-sharing applications for review and feedback on prototypes
  • Emulating a Spry accordion panel with the Grid auto shape
  • Storyboarding wireframes to make them more realistic
  • Adding navigation and design variations to elicit comments
  • Building multi-page mockups and adding interactivity
  • Inserting rollover states in prototypes
  • Using Flex skins in final mockup sets


(Music playing.) Hi! I'm Jim Babbage. As a Web designer and teacher, I know the importance of getting the project done on time and to spec. The best way I know to expedite the process is through rapid prototyping. You can get customer to sign off before a lot of work has been done. You can also change directions more easily. Using Fireworks CS4, I'll show you the range of prototyping options available. We'll look at multi-page mockups, AIR prototyping, HTML prototyping and customizing a Flex skin.

We will deconstruct a completed wireframe storyboard and then build these deliverables from scratch. Along the way, I'll talk about advanced imaging topics, including vector masking, using text in mockups, incorporating multiple images into design elements, streamlining your workflow with symbols, creating simple and complex rollover effects for a mockup and manipulating Fireworks HTML for a more realistic mockup. In short, I'll be showing how to make your life easier by saving time and cutting down the frustration of last- minute changes and misunderstandings.

Now, it's time to get started with Fireworks CS4 Rapid Prototyping.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Fireworks CS4: Rapid Prototyping .

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Q: I have a question about showing a vertical fly-out in my navigation menu when creating the interactivity for my layout. Could I add hotspots to menu items in my nav bar so that they would fly out in a vertical fashion when I hover over it?
A: There is a pop-up menu feature in Fireworks, but my best advice is to run in the opposite direction. These menus seem easy to use, but they are very difficult to maintain. If you're just using it for prototyping, it's fine, but don't expect to use the menus generated by FW in an actual web site.

That said, if you want to use them, add a slice or hotspot to a main menu button, then click on the behavior handle in the middle of the slice or hotspot. It looks like a little wheel. You'll see an option to Add pop-up menu in the list that appears.

However, it is better to build that kind of functionality in a true web page editor such as Dreamweaver.
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