By Ultan O'Broin Oracle UX-Oracle Paas4SaaS-Oracle on Nov 26, 2009
Really enjoyed this superb article in UX Matters "Visual Methods of Communicating Structure, Relationship, and Flow". A well written and nicely structured article, it also touches on one of my favorite areas for exploration as a form of user assistance - comics. I would concur with the author's thoughts:
"... visual methods and their respective tools do not get much attention, and many writers don't use them with the same comfort level they do tools that let them manipulate words."
Some of you might be familiar with comics as user assistance in the form of the Googlebook if you've downloaded the Google Chrome Browser. If not then take a look. It strikes me though that many of these visualization approaches really are just transformations of textual information, presented pictorially. There is a role for tools in helping here. We're all not brilliant visual artists - but there shouldn't be a need to be.
I can see a place for comics as a form of user assistance for some user roles and tasks, and it's something I intend to research further with the UX team. I would love to hear your opinions on this too!