Photo by Sigmund on Unsplash

Drafting a design document

Outlining scope, user interface design, and system and software architecture requirements

Objectives

  • Finalize and submit the final iteration of the low-fidelity prototype
  • Adequately scope our project; add required features and nice-to-haves, and start thinking about division of tasks
  • Iron out our target audience, storyboards, and user interface design sketches
  • Begin discussions on the technical requirements of the project, and conduct in-depth research of key factors in the decision

Personal reflections

Group work

After each member sketched out their ideas separately and presented them in the design pitch meetings, we had productive discussions on each layout presented and were able to agree on the general look of the interface.

In the end, we combined several ideas from each low-fi sketch to make a combined prototype on Adobe XD. A lot of my original ideas are still prevalent in the mockup, but my teammates added a very valuable perspective to each of the user flows, which we ended up modifying accordingly.

Individual contributions

I presented my prototype as I planned to do, and was quite pleased with the conversations that I had with my teammates about it. Overall, the feedback was positive, but there were some key areas that I would have overlooked if not for my group’s feedback.

For instance, my teammates pointed out that the sign up flow should not end at the homepage, because it would be completely devoid of content. It’s hard to see what your friends are doing when you haven’t added any friends. So we customized the recommendations page to add a special “no friends” state, where the user would be encouraged to search for friends with similar interests, or taking the same courses as them.

The “Recommendations — no friends” artboard

I’m quite satisfied with the prototype we ended up with, and I feel like we are ready to get some valuable feedback from our usability testing sessions. I look forward to see how the product will evolve over time and adjust to the needs of our users.

Next week’s objectives

  • Conduct usability testing sessions and collect data and usability metrics from the participants
  • Analyze the data collected to make an informed decision about which user flows need to be improved and which ones are adequate and ready to be assigned to a team member
  • Continue working on the technical requirements of the projects; for now we will research main options for deployment (AWS Lambda/EC2, Heroku, Netlify) and different kinds of system architectures (N-tiered, SOA, Microservices)

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Mohamed Harmanani

Mohamed Harmanani

4th year Computer Science & Philosophy student at the University of Toronto — interested in Data Science, UX Research and Software Development