Pathfinders Intern: What wireframing taught me about design

Hi, my name is Xinyan and I like to code.

2015-08-05 15.44.18-2Hi, my name is Xinyan, and I am 15 years old. I am a rising second-year student at the High School of Telecommunication Arts and Technology (HSTAT). I first became interested in software engineering during my first year of high school. It all began when I received a packet from HSTAT. In the packet, was a paper that invited me to attend a software engineering program. At first I was just curious about the program, so I signed up. Then, when my first year at HSTAT began, I realize it was fun creating websites and working on projects with my partner. Soon, I started to really like software engineering.


In March 2015, my Software Engineering teacher told my class about a internship hosted by the Pathfinders Mentorship Program, a program that provides high school students a chance to work as an intern in companies or organizations for six weeks to help prepare students for their future careers. I applied for the Pathfinders Mentorship Program’s spring term; unfortunately, I was rejected. However, in June 2015, I had received another email from Pathfinders Mentorship Program telling me that I was accepted to the program for the summer term and will be working at Nulab Inc. as an intern.

At the beginning of the internship, I expressed interest in learning more HTML and new programming languages. However, because of the time constraint, I learned something new and interesting that they haven’t taught much in school — web and responsive web/mobile design.

Learning by doing: what wireframing taught me about design

Cacoo is a very useful and helpful tool for learning and visualization. During my six weeks at Nulab Inc., I created many different web and mobile wireframes using Cacoo. By using Cacoo, I was able to sketch out wireframes easily. However, even if I am struggling with the web design, Cacoo has many wireframe templates that I can check out.

In doing a lot of wireframing, I learned that an attractive web design is what allows the customers to decide whether they should continue to shop in the store and buy the product or not. For example, a good web design should be organized comfortably for customers to use. A website should also include tools that a customer will use such as a search box, while the main content displays some great products in the store, and etc.

Here are links to the tutorials I created, so that you can learn to create your own wireframes in Cacoo:

GIF Tutorial web wireframeGIF Tutorial I created on how to wireframe a website on Cacoo.

website wireframe on CacooWebsite wireframe I created on Cacoo.

Web mobile wireframe on CacooResponsive mobile website wireframe I created on Cacoo.


Using Cacoo for my class and projects

For my Software Engineering class next year, I will be using Cacoo. Since Cacoo has the function to chat with friends, I will be able to work on projects with my partner together. We can discuss the ways to improve our project and edit the project together.

On the other hand, I can also use Cacoo to take important notes during class. When my teacher shows us slides, I can take down important notes in Cacoo or even create images and diagrams to help me visualize or brainstorm ideas for an upcoming assignment.

Learning to work outside of my comfort zone

Overall, I think my first internship experience was great. I have learned things besides coding and gain job experiences over the past few weeks. My supervisor and her co-workers are nice, they had given up their time to help me and teach me. I am grateful that I was an intern at Nulab. Because of Nulab, I now know how to work in offices, and I am aware of the right things to do and the things that I shouldn’t do.

More importantly, I have become a little more comfortable around people I didn’t know much. Even though, I wasn’t 100% comfortable around strangers, I am improving. Now I feel less awkward when I present my work. So I am thankful to Nulab, Inc. and the Pathfinders Mentorship Program for what I have gained this summer.

THANK YOU Nulab Inc. and Pathfinders Mentorship Program!

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