You are here
Home > Programming > PowerMockup – A Tool Every Developer Must Have

PowerMockup – A Tool Every Developer Must Have

Fallback Image

PowerMockup Featured Imagefor Blog Post

A little while ago, I wrote a post called Visual Studio 2012 Tips Part 1 – PowerPoint Storyboarding in which I discussed creating StoryBoards with the PowerPoint add-in that comes with Visual Studio Premium and Ultimate.

It helps you design your application’s interface and allows rudimentary interactivity through the use of hyperlinks between the slides. Well this is all good and well, but what if you don’t have Visual Studio? What if you’re not a .NET Developer?

Enter PowerMockup. I have been using it for a few days now, and I have to say that I am incredibly surprised at how easy it is to create interactive UI designs. In no time at all, I was able to create stunning interfaces and made me realise what an indispensable tool this actually is for a developer.

But let me start at the beginning. Installing PowerMockup is a breeze.

PowerMockup Install Screen 1

PowerMockup Install Screen 2

PowerMockup Install Screen 3

PowerMockup Install Screen 4

Why am I showing the installation screens I hear you ask? Well to prove a point. The installation screen (for me anyway) is an indication of the level of love a developer puts into his or her product. Too many devs focus on getting the app just right, but fluff over the installation screens. For me, this is like an advertisement to your product.

Think of the Installation Screens of products such as Visual Studio, DevExpress, Telerik and so on and you will see that a lot of time and thought went into making them. This makes me feel excited for the actual product and happily PowerMockup didn’t disappoint.

PowerMockup Menu Tab in PowerPoint

When you start PowerPoint (yes, I’m using PowerPoint 2013 which PowerMockup supports – along with PowerPoint 2007 and 2010) you will notice a new tab for PowerMockup.

PowerMockup Menu Icons Enter License Key

The next order of business is entering the License Key.

PowerMockup Enter License Key

PowerMockup Activated Successfully

With the product successfully activated, we can get down to the business of creating great UI’s.

PowerMockup Stencil Library

On the right you will notice the PowerMockup Stencil Library that includes a wide range of templates for typical elements of a website or application. To add an item to your PowerPoint slide, simply drag it to the position you want. It snaps into place easily in relation to the other items on your UI Design. You can also use the keyboard to move the items more precisely. All stencils are based on regular PowerPoint shapes and therefore are fully editable.

PowerMockup Add Tablet Stencil

Next, I dragged the Tablet Stencil onto my slide and started adding other items to it.

PowerMockup Drag Accordian Stencil Into Tablet Stencil

I selected the Accordion control from the Stencil Library and dragged it onto the Tablet stencil on my slide.

Tablet Complete Screen Accordian Snapped in Beautifully

This snapped into my Tablet stencil beautifully.

Drawing Tools Format and Accordian Options

Selecting the Accordion, you will notice  that the ribbon toolbar changes to include the Accordion Options.

Accordian Options under Format Tools

This enables you to modify the Accordion Item on your slide.

Tablet Accordian Renamed Sections

After a few minutes, I added a Login Control and renamed the Accordion Sections as needed.

Tablet Design 2 complete

I then created a new slide and copied and pasted the previous tablet item I created to the new slide. This allowed me to slightly modify an already created item instead of creating it all from scratch again. PowerMockup allows you to also save previously designed items as templates that you can add to the Template Library.

Tablet Design 3 Complete

I then repeated the process and copied my Tablet item to a new PowerPoint slide to create a third slide.

Insert Hyperlink from Sign In button

Next, I started creating the links between the slides to create the idea of a functional system. I right click on the ‘Sign In’ button and select Hyperlink from the context menu.

Insert Hyperlink to Slide 2 Window

From the Insert Hyperlink window, I select Slide 2. This will then create a link to my second slide and when I click on the ‘Sign In’ button, PowerPoint will navigate to the second slide.

Insert Hyperlink from Search Button to Slide 3

I repeat this process for the Search Textbox and for any other items on my UI screens.

Video playing in Tablet

What I also did was to paste a screenshot of  a video playing in the video section of the Tablet Item so that it illustrates that the app can play video’s.

Tweet Link to Video

Lastly I created a Hyperlink from the Tweet button which navigates to the Compose Tweet screen. There is virtually no limitation to what you can do in PowerMockup.

Have a look at the short introduction to PowerMockup.

Pricing

PowerMockup Pricing Structure

PowerMockup’s pricing is also very reasonable starting at $59.95 for a single developer. You can install it on up to three computers if you are the sole developer using the product. This cost is a one-time cost, in other words you will not pay monthly or yearly license fees. PowerMockup also comes with a 30 day money back guarantee. If you don’t like the product (which I seriously doubt), just let them know and they will refund you.

Some Features

The features list is quite impressive. You can find more info on their site, but here are some of them.

  • Loads of Stencils and Icons – The stencil library provides you with templates for the typical elements of a web or Windows app such as buttons, text boxes, tabs, tables etc.
  • Instant Search – You can search the stencils with PowerMockup automatically filtering the list of stencils until you find  the one you are looking for.
  • Create your own stencils and categories – If you create a template that you often use, you can add it to the Stencil Library by right clicking on it and select ‘Add Stencil’. You can also share your stencils with others by exporting and importing stencils. This is a very powerful feature allowing you to expand your library with the creations of others.
  • Smart Stencils – Resizing your stencils ensures that the aspect ratio is maintained without you having to think about it. It is all done for you.
  • Use PowerPoint 2007, 2010 and 2013 – PowerMockup is also compatible with all these versions of PowerPoint (x86  and x64) in a single installation package.

I am very impressed with this product and I would recommend it to any developer needing to create interactive UI’s. Feel free to contact the folks at PowerMockup if you need any further info.

Dirk Strauss
Dirk is a Software Developer and Microsoft MVP from South Africa. He loves all things Technology and is slightly addicted to Twitter and Jimi Hendrix. Apart from writing code, he also enjoys writing human readable articles. "I love sharing knowledge and connecting with people from around the world. It's the diversity that makes life so beautiful." Dirk feels very strongly that pizza is simply not complete without Tabasco, that you can never have too much garlic, and that cooking the perfect steak is an art he has yet to master.

Similar Articles

Top