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Effective Prototyping with Excel - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780120885824, 9780080916712

Effective Prototyping with Excel

1st Edition

A Practical Handbook for Developers and Designers

Authors: Nevin Berger Michael Arent Jonathan Arnowitz Fred Sampson
eBook ISBN: 9780080916712
Paperback ISBN: 9780120885824
Imprint: Morgan Kaufmann
Published Date: 7th January 2009
Page Count: 240
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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 – Preface – A Developer’s Dilemma
Chapter 2 – Getting Started – Your First Excel Prototype
Chapter 3 – Basics – The Excel Prototyping Canvas
Chapter 4 – Creating an Excel Prototyping Template
Chapter 5 – Excel Prototyping - Storyboards
Chapter 6 – Wireframes
Chapter 7 – Digital Interactive Prototypes
Chapter 8 – Iterating Prototypes with Excel
Chapter 9 – Communicating Your Design in Excel
Chapter 10 – Sharing Your Excel Prototype
Appendix A – Useful Techniques with Excel
Appendix B - Nevin Discovers Excel as a Rapid Prototyping Tool


Although recognized as a key to the design process, prototyping often falls victim to budget cuts, deadlines, or lack of access to sophisticated tools. This can lead to sloppy and ineffective prototypes or the abandonment of them altogether. Rather than lose this important step, people are turning to Microsoft Excel® to create effective, simple, and inexpensive prototypes. Conveniently, the software is available to nearly everyone, and most are proficient in its basic functionality.

Effective Prototyping with Excel offers how-to guidance on how everyone can use basic Excel skills to create prototypes – ranging from narrative wire frames to hi-fidelity prototypes. A wide array of software design problems and business demands are solved via practical step-by-step examples and illustrations.

Key Features

  • Step-by-step guide to prototyping with a simple and affordable tool nearly everyone already has on their desktop
  • Quickly and easily allows web and software designers to explore usability, design alternatives, and test theories prior to starting production
  • Perfect companion to Effective Prototyping for Software Makers – with the same author team and full-color treatment, useful case studies, and hands-on exercises


Usability professionals and interaction designers; software developers, web application designers, web designers, information architects, information and industrial designers


No. of pages:
© Morgan Kaufmann 2009
7th January 2009
Morgan Kaufmann
eBook ISBN:
Paperback ISBN:


"Collaboration across marketing, design, engineering, and QA organizations is key to the successful creation of a new software product. The Excel prototyping method is the only approach I am familiar with that allows all these stakeholders the same platform for communication without having to learn lots of new tools." --Daniel Rosenberg, Senior Vice President, SAP User Experience

"It is always a challenge to find good tools for interactive rapid prototyping. The authors have created an excellent methodology that allows both novice and advanced user experience professionals to use their knowledge of common desktop tools to quickly illustrate and test their ideas for interactive products." --Jeremy Ashley, Vice President, Applications User Experience, Oracle

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About the Authors

Nevin Berger

Nevin Berger is design director at Ziff Davis Media. Previously he was a senior interaction designer at Oracle Corporation and Peoplesoft, Inc., and has held creative director positions at World Savings and OFOTO, Inc.

Affiliations and Expertise

Ziff Davis Media, San Francisco, CA, USA

Michael Arent

Michael Arent is the director of user interface standards at SAP, and has previously held positions at Peoplesoft, Inc, Adobe Systems, Inc, MetaDesign,Sun Microsystems, and Apple Computer, Inc. He holds a number of U.S. and international patents.

Affiliations and Expertise

SAP Labs, Palo Alto, CA, USA

Jonathan Arnowitz

Jonathan Arnowitz is a User Experience Architect at Google Inc. and is the co-editor-in-chief of Interactions Magazine. Most recently Jonathan was a User Experience Architect at SAP Labs and was a Senior User Experience Designer at Peoplesoft. 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.

Affiliations and Expertise

Google, Inc., Mountain View, CA, USA

Fred Sampson

Affiliations and Expertise

IBM Silicon Valley Lab