Save time when mock­ing up ideas with a drag-and-drop graph­ics li­brary

Mac Format - - RATED - Devel­oper Grey Goo Soft­ware, grey­ OS X 10.10 or higher Speeds up pro­to­typ­ing Good se­lec­tion of el­e­ments Quite an ex­pen­sive, small li­brary

A cru­cial as­pect of de­sign­ing a soft­ware or web in­ter­face is pro­to­typ­ing: go­ing through ideas to re­fine them down to one that works. Mock­ing up an in­ter­face can take al­most as long as ac­tu­ally build­ing one. That’s where Ar­ma­ture comes in. It’s es­sen­tially a col­lec­tion of pre-made graph­i­cal el­e­ments de­signed to as­sist you with plan­ning or wire­fram­ing projects. Rather than build your own generic graph­ics to il­lus­trate how some­thing might be laid out, you sim­ply pull them from this li­brary.

Pre­vi­ously an ex­ten­sion for Adobe Il­lus­tra­tor yet now a stand­alone Mac app, Ar­ma­ture is sim­ple to use: se­lect a cat­e­gory of in­ter­face el­e­ments, find the one you want and copy and paste it into your app of choice. Ob­vi­ous can­di­dates for build­ing mock­ups in­clude Pho­to­shop and Il­lus­tra­tor, but Ar­ma­ture also works well with Mi­crosoft Word, Tex­tEdit and Om­niGraf­fle.

Ob­jects are easily re­sized and ma­nip­u­lated once in­side your de­sign app, and Ar­ma­ture’s se­lec­tion of graph­ics is good, cov­er­ing most of the kinds of in­ter­face el­e­ments you

Ar­ma­ture’s a handy time­saver for app de­vel­op­ers and web de­sign­ers, though it’s a lit­tle pricey for what it is.

need to cre­ate plans and wire­frames.

Although it’s very ef­fi­cient to use and cer­tainly speeds up pro­to­typ­ing, the price seems a lit­tle high for what is es­sen­tially a col­lec­tion of 150 graph­i­cal el­e­ments to paste into other apps’ doc­u­ments. If you do a lot of wire­fram­ing, that’s maybe not such an is­sue. Hollin Jones

Search, drag and drop pre-cre­ated wire­frame graph­ics for lay­out plan­ning.

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