At Pidoco we work hard on delivering a great prototyping experience and are constantly improving our tool. This time we have re-worked the stencil palette, a core part of how prototypes are created, to save you precious time while building your prototypes and make prototyping even more convenient and fun. So what is changing?
1. New design
Let’s start with the obvious: we improved the design of the stencil palette. As of today, the palette comes along with a neat new design that is not only pretty, but makes it easier to find the stencils you are looking for. The former stencil categories have been removed and similar stencils have been grouped to reduce the total number of elements, so you won’t need to scroll as much. In addition, we have moved the options to upload images and create custom elements (called “Custom Stencils”) to the very beginning of the palette so you can easily access them whenever needed.
Where similar stencils have been grouped in the palette, you will find a little number after the stencil name that indicates how many options are hiding behind the stencil symbol. The arrow symbol, for example, represents 16 different types of arrows and lines.
2. Stencil search and Quick Add capability
With the release of the newly designed stencil palette we are also adding a new feature that you will love: a stencil search. Located atop the stencil palette the search bar will considerably facilitate your work. At any time while editing a page simply type the beginning letters of the stencil you need. This will activate the search function and auto-filter the stencil palette. Then use your mouse to add the desired stencil or simply use the arrow keys to select the element and hit “enter” to add it to the canvas. Hit “enter” again to keep adding more of the same stencil. You can search anything from stencils or icons to custom stencils and uploaded images.
3. Creating Custom Stencils
One of the great time savers in Pidoco are Custom Stencils: These elements can be custom built from existing stencils and serve as templates or masters that can be reused and easily updated. Creating a custom stencil will become easier with this release as we have moved the feature right into your sight at the top of the stencil palette. Simply click the “Create Stencil” button and start editing your custom stencil. While we were at it, we also gave the Custom Stencil canvas a new look to make it easier to distinguish it from the page canvas.
By the way, all custom stencils appear at the end of the stencil palette and are visually marked.
4. Uploading images
Just like Custom Stencils, uploading images is a great way to save time and expand your stencil pool, e.g. by adding your own icon libraries. You can even use uploaded screenshots or design comps to quickly piece together an interactive prototype using our Action Area to create transparent hotspots for links or gestures. With this release, you will be able to access the image upload much more easily while editing a page as we have moved it to the top of the stencil palette. All uploaded images will be listed at the end of the stencil palette, just like your custom stencils.
5. New icon selector
Pidoco features over 300 icons you can use in your prototypes. You wil find almost anything you need, from social media icons to common toolbar symbols. To help you pick the right icon even faster, we have added a new icon selection dialog that gives you a quick overview of all available icons. Now, instead of having to find the right icon in the stencil palette, you can simply add a generic icon to the canvas and then pick from 300+ icons via the dialog. Picked the wrong one? No problem – double-clicking the icon will reopen the dialog and let you pick a different icon.
6. Easy page set-up
Last but not least, we are making it easier to find and change page settings. Although strictly speaking it is not part of the stencil palette, this new feature will save you lots of clicks by giving you direct access to page size information and the context menu where you can change page size and other page properties via a new information element atop the page canvas.
How do you like our recent makeover? Drop us a comment here or via Facebook, Twitter or Google+ or contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org. We are looking forward to hearing from you!
By the way, did you know that you can submit feature requests and other ideas in the Pidoco Forum? Simply make a suggestion and all other users can vote on it. Our developers will comment and keep you updated on the status.
PS: You are not a Pidoco user, yet? Why not register for a free 31-day trial today?