Alternate Routes

GD3990A fall 2014 · GW Corcoran School of the Arts and Design
Instructor: David Ramos (

In this project, you’ll explore ways of telling stories in electronic form, and you’ll study techniques for helping a reader move around a digital space. You’ll make content around the route that you choose.

Study a route

Choose a route that you have followed recently, one that you can readily revisit in the coming weeks – some path of travel through DC and its surroundings. Explore and record the places along your route. The act of traveling from one point to another is a linear experience. Make repeated trips or stop to examine places along the way, though, and thoughts and memories fold into a non-linear form. Can you uncover a story that you would like to tell?


Translate your experiences into a digital publication, combining text, images, or time-based media. Organize your publication in a way that encourages readers to move out-of-sequence, not just page-by-page, and create a navigation system that supports that kind of flow.

Build the tablet publication using Adobe DPS for the iPad. Your publication should include text, images, and either sound or motion. Add your own navigation system in addition to the navigational features that are built in to DPS. This project asks “how much technology is enough”: aim for quality work and thoughtful decisions, rather than half-implemented complexity.

This project involves learning how much technology is enough. Aim for quality and thoughtful design decisions, rather than half-implemented complexity.

Functional requirements

Produce a project for the iPad using DPS. Screen aspect ratio is 1024×768px, horizontal or vertical. Provide a cover, a table of contents, and interior screens. Consider screen size, readability, and usability.

This project moves fast, and you should focus on design and content. Be leery of adding interactive features for their own sake. Think about whether additional elements are worth the time and whether you’ll be able to build them well. If you use sound or video, especially, take care that your improve the reader’s experience rather than detract from it.