Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Workflowy: your next application mockup tool

Recently I learned of workflowy, a wonderfully simple and clever way to track lists (and lists of lists). It brings me back to the old DOS days of using an Outliner (maybe MaxThink? For the life of me, I can't remember the name of the one I used), which was one of the original Killer Apps I encountered. I still like using a Wiki to track projects and notes, so Workflowy has yet to take hold in my daily workflow. Still, there's no denying it's a cool app.

Yesterday, I was passing along some advice for getting your software idea out of your head and into written form and it occurred to me that Workflowy would be the perfect tool for this.

Rather than focusing on graphical mockups (which are definitely slick, but can be exhausting to create and manage), I suggest folks work in a outline format. Essentially, you want to describe the hierarchy: Roles » Pages » Functionality. This is where Workflowy really shines.

You've got the technique and now the tool, what's stopping you from getting that next great idea out of your head, and into reality? Oh yeah, nothing.


  1. Gosh, Ben, this is so useful for me. Me and my love for lists and organization. Thanks!

  2. I know, right?

    I wish I had a use for it, it's so cleanly done.

  3. I used it as my permanent scratchpad for about a year. My goal was to get to zero state. It really wasn't what Workflowy was made for, and I retreated back to the safety of my dozens of Evernote books.

    But Workflowy did Ux and price and everything else right. Very impressive.