Recently I stumbled upon some articles on the use of Wireframes.
There are many different definitions of wireframes, prototypes, and visual design, so let’s start by defining how these terms will be used in this article. A wireframe is a grayscale block diagram that illustrates the overall navigation and the blocks of elements such as content, functionality, etc. that will go on the screen. It does not contain pictures and doesn’t necessarily need to link to anything. It just demonstrates what elements a web page or application screen will contain and roughly where they might go—although the location can change. It does not include visual design. An HTML wireframe is created in HTML using a program such as Dreamweaver. A flat wireframe is created using a program such as Visio, Illustrator, or Photoshop and does not have interactive components, but is a flat image of the elements on the screen.
Wireframes are clearly better than functional specs, use cases, and other forms of abstract requirements documents, but they are still too abstract for those not in the industry. Expecting anyone that isn’t technical to view a wireframe and understand all of the subtle details of how it will actually work is ridiculous.
Garrett receives some interesting comments