January 24, 2002

Web-based wizards and the Sorcerer's Stone
IBM's developerWorks site discusses the topic of web-based wizard interfaces. The author shares her learnings from designing and testing web-based wizards for nearly a year. She nicely covers the various project team roles involved in crafting a good wizard, including the roles of information architect and usability specialist. Reasons why you should not auto-tab in forms and why a controlled vocabulary is important are included and really make this article a gem.

Interesting book reference: Designing Effective Wizards: A Multidisciplinary Approach
"Nuts-and-bolts guide to designing wizards Includes checklists and examples The complete guide to wizard design. Practical usability and design techniques for successful wizard and software projects"

The Web Design Pattern for a Wizard by Martin van Welie provides a nice overview of what wizards are good for, the principle behind them, and the basics behind creating one. Not familiar with patterns? Try this past post for more information.

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