Posts from "September, 2008"

pidoco° as a Desktop App?

Almost. However, if you do not have Firefox or Safari installed on your Windows machine, or if you do not have the necessary rights to install either of these browsers, then the pidoco.exe is the solution for you. Simply download and run the file on your windows desktop.

Download and execute pidoco° from your desktop:

Get pidoco° for your desktop

Requires Windows 2000 and newer, and a connection to the internet. Administrator rights are not required.

What is inside? The .exe file contains a lightweight browser called Prism from Mozilla, which is extracted to your temp folder and opened with the pidoco° page. Nothing will be installed on your machine and you do not need any administrative rights to run pidoco°. The file does not contain any viruses, malware or spyware.

How to crash Safari

Sometimes, life as a web developer is not that easy. Especially when dealing with browser issues that have to be bypassed somehow. And some issues are rather critical, because they lead to an entire browser crash. However, it feels good if you can locate the bug and find a solution.

During the past weeks it may have occurred that your Safari crashed while visiting pidoco°. Today, we installed a bug fix in both the preview and the productive version, which is supposed to prevent Safari from crashing.

Although the source of the problem was not in our code, we don’t mind if you are angry about our tool as long as you tell us whenever you feel something is going wrong with pidoco°. You can use the feedback form within the editor or send an email to contact (at) pidoco.com. Otherwise we have no chance to fix the problem.

Luckily, our system is designed to store all your data instantaneously. This way, you cannot loose any work except for up to 5 seconds. You don’t have to worry about your work, although it is annoying to see a browser crashing.

For the ones that are interested in the details: SVG includes the use-tag which allows for duplicating certain shapes by reference rather than copying them. However, the rendering engine of Safari and Chrome, WebKit, has a problem if the referenced shape is modified via JavaScript. In our case we changed the css class which lead to the crash.

A first conclusion

Being back in Berlin and having unpacked our car, we can draw a first conclusion of our first conference as a sponsor: judging from now it was a very successful time in Lübeck. We had many fruitful discussions and have talked to many more interested people than we expected.

We would like to thank all the attendants for the inspiring feedback. We started evaluating all the ideas we got and couldn’t stop discussing different ways to implement them. Therefore, you can be sure to see new features based on your suggestions.

Even during the conference we had the first ones to open their free account of pidoco°. Please be aware that our Prototype Creator is currently only fully functional in Firefox. With Safari and Opera we still have some issues to solve. However, the best way to help us discovering all bugs and support us in solving them is to send us feedback. You can use the feedback form that we included into the editor.

Thanks again for these great days in Lübeck and hope to see you all at some of the upcoming events like the BarCamps in Munich or Berlin, the World Usability Day, or the UPA Europe conference in Turin.

Others use Powerpoint, we use pidoco°

Yesterday we had a very successful presentation here in Lübeck with about 60 attendants. Thank you for having attended our session.

In this session we made an experiment with our tool: Tino used a prototype as presentation slides and was able to integrate the prototyping features within the presentation. After all, we got the feedback that it was great that we used our tool and showed a real demo instead of just some powerpoint slides.

So next time you need some slides, use pidoco° 😉

Thanks again for all the feedback after the session.

Live at Mensch und Computer

After some work this morning our booth is ready for all the visitors. We have set up the live collaboration of the Prototype Creator, such that you can see on our second laptop what we are presenting at the first one. We are excited to get the first feedback for this feature, since we have installed the feature on friday.

In addition, we are playing the Usability Quartet. It is definitively fun to play this game. From time to time we will post the highscore in here. Come over and play with us!

Remember: on monday, 4pm, Tino will present our tool in room AMS2. Hope to see you there!

New Features II: Image Cropping

The second feature I would like to present is image cropping. At first I didn’t see the big value and Tino had to convince me to focus on this feature. But having used image cropping it is lightning fast to assemble a prototype out of a sample image of interaction elements.

The screenshot below shows in the center the stencil image in its full size. Around this image there are four copies of the same image with different cropping. When you have opened the editor, set the url of an image to your favorite stencils. Then start resizing the image. By pressing the shift key you keep the ratio of the image. By pressing the control button you start cropping the image. You can start cropping or resizing and to both actions in any order for several times until you have the right section of the image.

In case you need a button, take such an image, select the right section and then use a click area on top. The click area then specifies the target of the fake button. No matter whether you use some iPhone stencils, your own design, or the corporate design of your customer, it is very easy to get a prototype with some initial graphical design.

Use image cropping and accelerate your prototyping!

New Features I: Collaboration

As I already announced, by this series of blog entries we want to introduce some new features that you will be able to see and experience at the Mensch und Computer next week. The first feature are our Collaboration capabilities.

If you ever have used Google Docs with two or more people at the same time, then you know that you can just edit the document and the software cares about how to send the changes to the other users. We have implemented the same mechanism, but for our prototypes. Thus, if several users are logged in to the same prototype, every change you make will be distributed automatically to the others.

While you are editing the login part of your prototype, your colleague can design a content page. After just some second the changes will be available to the others, without any need to take care.

The same applies for running the prototype: while a test user is viewing the prototype, you can modify the same page. If the user reloads the page, the changes will be visible. This way, you can demonstrate different variants of the same page and ask for feedback to both variants.

In case you think this feature is not very interesting to you, give it a try in your next project. You will see how easy collaboration can be.

pidoco° among the winners of the “Gründerwettbewerb”

Yesterday, the winners of the German business plan contest “Gründerwettbewerb – Mit Multimedia erfolgreich starten” were anounced at the IFA in Berlin. Luckily, we were among the 14 winning teams of the second prize.

The funny thing about such occasions is, that you meet other startups that you already know from different events. This time, we met MeinKartenspiel and Telewebber. We know both founders from the first German StartupWeekend 2007.

Congratulations to all winners!

Prototype Creator in Google Chrome

The new Google browser Chrome is available since today. As it is based on Webkit we immediately tried to run our Prototype Creator in Chrome. We’re happy to see just another browser supporting SVG and therefore being a candidate for our Prototype Creator. Just Microsoft is still missing….

The screenshot shows our development version, with the improved design, running in Chrome. You will be able to see the new design together with new features at the “Mensch und Computer” next week. During the next days we will introduce some of the new features in here. So stay tuned!