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CN22: Developing an Effective Prototyping Strategy

Quick Facts

Time: Thursday, 15 April 2010, 9:00 to 13:00
Units: 2
Organizers: Jonathan Arnowitz, Dirk Jan Hoets


Attending this course will empower participants to build prototypes that convey enough information about the product at the appropriate time and thus set expectations appropriately.

This course will also help software projects plan and manage the prototyping process. This tutorial together with its two related tutorials are unique to CHI tutorials as they lay a strategy and framework on how to prototype effectively (Part 1—this part); then show the participants how to apply the theory to their everyday challenges and work environments (in Part 2 Prototyping Master Class), finally part three shows participants an easier and more efficient way to perform wireframe prototyping than they have ever used before (Part 3: Prototyping with Excel); thereby allowing them to prototype more efficiently in the their daily work.

We also feel this is a breakthrough tutorial series for CHI. We feel many tutorials try to cram in as much details and information that overwhelm the user with much information but little applicable details. However, our tutorial is based on real practice and real experiences. He will challenge the audience to call us on anything that seems impractical or inapplicable. We also will show the attendees how to apply our strategies and techniques into their daily work, for us the most important take away for them.


This course is intended for all that are involved one way or another in prototyping, both those who plan as well as those who realize the prototypes. For example:
  • Interaction designers
  • Graphic designers
  • User researchers
  • Software engineers
  • Product managers
  • Functional analysts
Although ideal for the beginner or intermediate, given the lack of attention to prototyping process in general in our profession all attendees will be able to benefit.


Evolving from their experiences in the field and writing/reviewing the book “Effective Prototyping for Software Makers”, the instructors have developed a workshop that was taught on several occasions in the Netherlands. This seminar was also presented on various conferences and venues and companies such as SF IXdA, BayCHI, Google and SAP. As well as on conferences of local chapters of CHI related organizations such as Chi Nederland 2009, Design by Fire Conference in the Netherlands, and Mensch & Computer 2007 (Man and Computer) in Germany. The tutorial instructors also have written two books on the topic of effective prototyping: Effective Prototyping for Software Makers and Effective Prototyping with Excel, both from Morgan Kaufman.


  • The benefits of prototyping
  • How to manage prototyping
  • Hand on experience with some quick prototyping methods and techniques
  • What are the best prototyping tools
  • How to decide what to prototype and when


  • Jonathan Arnowitz is co-author of “Effective Prototyping for Software Makers” and “Effective Prototyping with Excel.” He is User Experience Strategist at Stroomt Interactions. Formerly, Jonathan was a User Experience Architect at Google Inc. and SAP Labs and the coeditor- in-chief of Interactions Magazine. Jonathan was also a senior user experience designer at PeopleSoft and a leading HCI consultant in the Netherlands. He is a member of the SIGCHI extended executive committee, and was a founder of DUX, the first ever joint conference of ACM SIGCHI, ACM SIGGRAPH, AIGA Experience Design Group, and STC.
  • Dirk Jan Hoets is a Freelance User Experience Specialist. Among his skills are interaction design, usability research and user experience strategist. In the past he has been a reviewer for various CHI related conferences (DUX, CHI 2004 and others) as well as for Effective Prototyping for Software Makers” and “Effective Prototyping with Excel.” Among his clients are such companies as SAP, Business Objects and the Dutch government. He has been involved in the development of software solutions for a wide variety of platforms (handheld, mobile, desktop) and various target audiences. He is also a professional trainer in interaction design and usability.