Functional Prototype Assignment

Due: Tuesday, December 1, 2015 before Class

Objective: In this assignment, you will refine your interactive prototype based on feedback you have received. You will also provide enough functionality so that your prototype can be tested by users in a realistic way.

What to do:

  1. Review the feedback you have collected from users and classmates about your interactive prototype. Decide the points that you plan to address in your next prototype, and any general changes you would like to make.
  2. Decide the tasks that you would like to support during your user testing. The tasks should provide the user with a complete and realistic feel for how the eventual application will work (or, for large projects, how some specific aspects of the future application will work). The interface should support both high-level user tasks (decide where you want to eat dinner tonight), as well as specific, low-level tasks (search for a restaurant open at 10PM).
  3. Revise and/or re-implement your interactive prototype based on the tasks that you intend to support. It is not essential that you implement all of the back-end functionality, or that you provide a completely refined graphic presentation (polished icons, visual design, etc.). However, your prototype should be complete from an interaction perspective – the user should be able to use all of the functions that he/she needs to perform the tasks that you have outlined. Moreover, the interface should provide sufficient functionality to gracefully allow exploration the user might do to perform these tasks. Any potential user errors should also be handled gracefully. In short, the system should provide a realistic and complete experience for the user while performing the tasks you have described.
  4. In class on November 24th, be ready with at least an initial version of your interactive prototype. You will conduct a pilot usability test and receive feedback on your prototype, including whether or not you have provided enough functionality to support testing with real users.

What to turn in:

The preferred method of turn-in is a PDF document, including each of the following components. To avoid a late penalty, e-mail a link to your group’s submission to the professor and TA before class on Tuesday, December 1st:

  1. Cover sheet including yourself and your partners’ names, and your chosen focus. Note the time, duration and attendance of each brainstorming session. Include a paragraph about what each person contributed to the assignment [1/2 page].
  2. The list of changes that you decided to make based on the last round of feedback [1-2 pages].
  3. Describe the tools you used to develop your prototype, how they helped and/or created additional obstacles [1/2-1 page].
  4. Provide a link to your functional prototype, as well as directions about how to install and/or run it. Supplement with screen shots [1-2 pages].
  5. Be ready with a preliminary version of your interactive prototype in class on November 24th.
  6. You are welcome to continue working on your prototypes beyond December 1st – we will accept updates to your prototypes up until the final submission date of December 15th.

The total length of your report should be less than 4 pages (not including any prototype screen shots). Brevity, clarity and focus on the goals of the assignment will be rewarded.

Please contact the professor or the class TA if you have any questions with this assignment.