Balsamiq Community Discussion

Add comments to wireframe controls

Is there a way to add comments/notes to specific controls? (similar to Google drive comments). Currently, it only seems comments/notes can be to the entire wireframe and cannot be control specific. Thank you.

Hey @tonycamarata!

While there isn’t a note field built into the controls themselves, you can use the markup notes to add notes to your controls.

You can also set internal notes on controls by right-clicking on them and selecting Custom Control Properties.

Those notes won’t be visible on the control, but they will show up in any exported JSON or XML.

Let me know if that helps, Tony. :slight_smile:

Now that Balsamiq is adding the comments feature to specific comment elements it would be so much nicer if it would be available for all elements. I had posted something similar a couple of years ago. Recently I just had to move away from from using Balsamiq because I didn’t want to have to recreate everything in another environment just so I could add notes to the elements. I have used the techniques you suggest above, but they just aren’t adequate.

Ideally there would be a little comment symbol showing which elements had comments. This could be turned on and off ala MS Excel comments.

I don’t know how difficult this is on your end, but I suspect that applications would appear out of the woodwork if you offered this feature. I love the simplicity of designing in Balsamiq, but the lack of ability to provide detailed comments on elements is a huge constraint.

Hey again, @webb9447!

Have you gotten a chance to check out our new Balsamiq Cloud beta? If not, shoot me an email, and I’ll get you invited. I’m curious as to what you think of the comment/callout feature there. It won’t help with exporting, but maybe it’s a matter of building on top of that, rather than a completely separate feature.

Let me know what you think!

Hi Brendan,

Thanks for the link. I tried the comments feature. Unless I am missing something, for me it doesn’t really work.

  1. I can’t display all the comments on the page, so I have to use the rollover in the comments section to figure out if there is a comment on any particular control.

  2. The comment designators are large, so if they all displayed they would be a bit cluttery.

  3. I use the desktop version and have the ability to add comments under custom properties. It is a pain, but I can do it. The new cloud version doesn’t seem to have that.

What would I want?

  1. Add a comment directly to any control in the control inspector section when the control is selected.

  2. If there is a comment on a control a small symbol would display if “display markup” is selected (e.g. small red triangle in the upper right similar to Excel)

  3. Roll over the control and the comment would appear or, alternatively, the user would just be view/edit the comment in the control inspector screen.

The discussion (reply) stuff in the current comments is nice, but not as necessary.

I think I would use Balsamiq in all my design work if I had this feature. Without it, I have had to abandon Balsamiq recently because, oddly, it made the design process too slow.

Thanks again for getting me access to the trial.

Andy

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Got it, @webb9447. I will get this added to the tracker. I cannot promise any type of discussion for a little bit, though, as we are very much in “ship allthethings” mode.

Afterwards, however, we will sit down and chat about it. :slight_smile:

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Just to say, this is years later now, and the ability to add a note/comment to a specific control is largely the biggest hindrance to adoption our team. I appreciate the ability to add separate little notes and comments with the nice designators, but that is very different from being able to add a specific control comment that remains and that you don’t have to hunt for in a comments section. I wonder how many people look at Balsamiq and just decide to skip using it for that reason. On one of our latest app design projects we used Excel of all things just so we could have that feature.

For programmers we love the wire frame approach, because it is quick. But we need to be able to explain this attaches to this field and if you click here it will take this action.

Hello @webb9447,

Thanks for the bump and the feedback here. I totally understand how frustrating it can be when an app doesn’t have a specific feature that I’d like. Taking a step back - and addressing the time that has passed - the bulk of our engineering resource has been focused on the new, native desktop apps for over a year now.

The reason I mention this is that, in that time, new features have basically taken a back seat and that’s a decision we made consciously. Now that the desktop apps have shipped, we’re turning our attention back to feature requests and we’re actively having this discussion now across a number of teams.

I still can’t make any promises but I can echo Brendan and tell you that we track all requests like this formally so that we can have an informed decision on priorities.

I know it’s a bit of a non answer but I think it’s especially important not to mislead you into believing that a specific feature will be added when we don’t know that it will. We know that we’re not going to have every feature wanted or needed by every customer and communicating about that honestly is also important. Again, thank you for the well-considered feedback.

I should have said, I think this would have been an easy-add in Balsamiq 3. As simple as taking the Custom Control Data and renaming it to Notes and making editable in the Inspector as shown in the image here. Granted I don’t know how “simple” this would actually be given your code structure. I do know it would be a world changer for us.

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