Bringing the trusty process workshop 'brown paper' into the 21st century

Where would we be without that roll of brown paper and pack of Post-It notes for a workshop ? Such a trusted friend of the process professional and such a pain in the a$$ once the workshop is finished, having to roll it up to take back to the desk, little bits of sticky notes falling as you walk….


I recently postulated taking the concept into the modern age by creating touchwalls for workshop environments and after reading an article from Focus magazine I came across another company with an exceptional product which could even come closer to the brown paper for those who like to wander the corridors with something in their arms: Displax

Displax are a company that are producing an array of multitouch concepts, one of which caught my eye in that you can create an interactive surface using an overlay. Now, imagine being able to roll up not a piece of brown paper but that flexible layer, tag it to a wall/ window/ anywhere and connect it to your laptop or other such device which is networked and interfaced with a BPM or BPA tool, then doing what you do best in a workshop and creating a process map roughly but as you do it’s captured in real-time. No more faffing around with Post-It notes and coloured pens, no more storage space for 2 year old rolls of brown paper that might come in handy again, no more manually scribing what you captured in a process workshop back into another tool afterwards. 

Yes, you can do all this with a laptop and a projector but what I’m trying to capture here is the essence of the collaborative and social nature of a workshop where people like to get up and play, the projector experience is clinical and there’s only one real ‘driver’ where getting several people to interact in the same way as using the brown paper but dragging the concept kicking and screaming into the 21st century a little more.

Can’t we create a revolution and chuck the rolls of brown parcel paper onto the fire ?


One response to “Bringing the trusty process workshop 'brown paper' into the 21st century

  1. For working sessions building a process I really like the setup I use, which includes Lombardi’s Blueprint and a SMARTboard. I don’t like carrying my process models with me, or even carrying my laptop around. We have a large grouping of conference rooms all with PC’s and SMARTboards. So, I can pull up my models in Blueprint, and anyone can walk up to the board, pull the diagram around, add elements, details, anything. It works out great for me. I especially like the process outline for the brainstorming portion, when that’s needed.

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