Please note: This content has not been updated since Spring 2004!

The Development Process

Strategic Development
Develop the brand
Develop and validate business plan
Explore technical requirements, limitations, possibilities (functionality, dynamic / static content, maintenance)

Conduct User Discovery
Understand user's expectations and priorities through a variety of heuristics: fly-on-the-wall ethnography, one-to-one interviews, collaborative design sessions, online / offline surveys

Establish goals and (top 3) messages - of the product and of the client
Get to know your audience (age, interests, needs, skills, cultural, social) and capabilities (platform, browser/app, connection speed, degree of web experience)
Develop user profiles
Observe and interview real world users
Write user scenarios

Audit content - write new or use repurposed?
Establish feature set - meet immediate and long-term goals
Develop architecture

Conceptual Development
Design interaction: explore different primary workflows through the system, try different navigation scenarios, accommodate goal-oriented users and browsers
Finalize interaction concept and develop storyboards
Test a paper prototype
Design visuals: homepage and subpage layout, style, color palette, typography, imagery
Refine design with client feedback

Design a sequence flow with visual and interaction elements
Test a functioning and task-defined prototype
Analyze findings and integrate changes into design
Design remaining pages
Program (HTML, DHTML, CSS, Flash, JavaScript, Java, XML, Perl, CGI)
Integrate major technology (software, hardware, firmware)

Quality check (QA)
Test functionality (does it work, at volume, on different platforms, browsers)
Proofread, check graphics, check compatibility, verify code
Fix bugs

Launch product / site

Archive and back up all project materials
Deliver styleguide and specification manuals to client
Train clients / site administrators if necessary
Conduct a wrap meeting for team