The tools and techniques for storyboarding can be as varied as the team members ' and users' imaginations will allow. Passive-storyboarding constructs have been made out of tools as simple as paper and pencil or Post-it notes. More advanced storyboards can be built with presentation managers such as PowerPoint. Passive, active, and user-interactive storyboards have been built with various packages that allow fast development of user screens and output reports . Interactive storyboards can be built with a variety of specialty software packages for interactive prototyping, and tools such as Macromedia's Director and Cinemation from Vividus Corporation can be used to create more complex animations and simulations.
In a simpler example, at RELA, Inc., one team member also dabbled in cartooning on the side. At the concept stage of a project, he would simply sketch a half- dozen or so simple cartoons that showed the product in its typical use or various aspects of the product's interface. This was a quick and inexpensive way to gain a reaction from the potential users. Also, the cartoon-like nature of the output avoided some of the potential problems of storyboarding, as we'll see later. Unfortunately, no other cartoonists were around when the designer left the company, leaving us to find alternative storyboarding techniques!
In our current efforts, which are focused mostly on ISV applications, we get along reasonably well by using PowerPoint or other common desktop presentation managers, in combination with sample screen shots built by the same tools used to build the graphical user interfaces in the application. Interestingly, the greatest breakthrough in storyboarding technique may well have been the simple addition of the animation capability to PowerPoint. Suddenly, our ability to express dynamics and interactivity increased substantially.