Balsamiq Community Discussion

Liking to wireframes via URLS - a better way?


I’m designing a piece of software, with about 60 screens (with one wireframe spec’ing each screen). In my documentation (Google Sheets), and the data modeller’s documentation, we are referencing particular wireframes (with their URL). So anyone who is a project member can follow the link and see that screen/wireframe. But… each time they follow a link (opening a new tab or window in their browser), the whole project loads. This takes some time (about 30 to 40 secs), because the project is big (the speed problem is not connectivity - we are on fibre). This kills the process of following links - no one wants to wait and interrupt their thinking for that long - so they stop using the links.

I think Balsamiq Cloud creates a new session for each browser tab? Why can’t it just use the current session?
Or is there a better way to reference wireframes from other documentation? Surely this is important functionality - things need to be hyperlinkable.


Hey Christopher,

While there isn’t a way to do this yet, the idea of having permalinks to wireframe images (like we did in myBalsamiq) is something we have been talking about adding to Balsamiq Cloud. I’ll make sure the team knows that you’re looking for it as well.

Unfortunately, aside from including exported images/pdf of the wireframes, what you’re doing is probably the best way to make sure that your users are seeing the most up-to-date version of a wireframe. While I think we should look into whether or not we can load a wireframe in the same tab as the previous one (rather than opening an whole new instance of Balsamiq Cloud), I am worried that there may be some weird browser hacks required to make that happen. And then, even if there isn’t, is that functionality a reasonable expectation? Or would folks be expecting that each link would open in its own tab because it’s different content?

Either way, we will look into it!

I’m sorry for the trouble again, my friend. I’ll bring that frustration you’re feeling back to the team, and we will talk about it.


Thanks, Brendan.

Note, I am not asking for permalinks to wireframe images. I am asking to speed up the loading of the existing permalinks to the individual wireframes in a project (probably involves an architecture change).

Also, I am not suggesting to load a wireframe in the same tab as the previous one (as you say, that would be crazy) - I’m asking: can’t you use the same session in the new tab (to possibly avoid reloading whatever is taking so long to load)?

I was asking this question on the forum in case anyone else had this need (to link to each individual Balsamiq Cloud wireframe, in their documentation), in case they’d come up with a solution / work around.

Something else, related to the sloooow load time… I load a project and it is taking a long time, so I go to another browser tab and read an article (or whatever). I check back on the tab that is loading the project. Not much has happened. Switch tabs again. Repeat. Finally realise that the project only loads if that browser tab is in focus. I need to stay on that tab and stare blankly till it loads :frowning:
Why can’t the project load, when I’m on another tab?


Ahh, I see Christopher. Sorry for my misunderstanding!

You can link to an individual wireframes in Balsamiq Cloud, but it will load the entire project. You’re looking for something similar to an image (insomuch as it is a link that shows a single wireframe) but you would like it to have comments and the other things that come with loading the editor. Is that right?

Let me know because we are working on the Full Screen Presentation Mode, and I wonder if we could sneak that feature in as well.

As for the slow loading time, it sounds like we are fighting against your browser. Modern browsers love being energy efficient, so if you switch tabs while a Javascript-heavy task is running (like, say, loading our editor), the browser will reduce the amount of CPU time it’s giving that tab (sometimes freezing it entirely). Browsers assume that if you aren’t looking at it, it doesn’t need to spend time on it.

If you open a project and leave the tab open, how long does it take? Larger project will take longer, but it shouldn’t take more than 30 seconds to load a project.

Let me know and we will dig deeper. :slight_smile:

Edit: I forgot to add - Florian is out today, but as soon as he is back, we will tackle that canvas issue you’re having.