Saturday, August 29, 2009

About time...

I just came across this great web-site. They have a book "The Way of the Unplugged" that describes methods one can use to design software. WITHOUT USING A COMPUTER!

I cannot wait to get my hands on their book. I read the first chapter (a free download). It describes the usual "late mistakes are expensive mistakes". The overall idea is to get as many design issues resolved as early and inexpensively as possible.

One of the big hurdles in prototyping is the technology. Many of us want something better than chicken-scratch on a whiteboard, so we use something like Visio. The problem with something like that is "it looks too good" and "takes too long". If it looks too good, people are less likely to suggest that you change it. If it takes too long, you won't do it in a meeting, meaning you'll go back to your desk, put together the diagram, send it around, THEN have another meeting (repeat until exhausted) With their product GuiMags, you can put together a Visio quality prototype at whiteboard speed.

Their book "The Unplugged" describes the effective use of their product and other ways to resolve issues early in the development cycle. Ideas like this are perfect for locking everyone in a "war room" ordering pizza and getting a good design quickly. WITHOUT USING COMPUTERS!!!!