Michael G's Blog

Week 2 – Article Review >>”The Site Development Process”

Posted in Intermediate Scripting by michaelg1980 on October 20, 2009

Article Review >>
“The Site Development Process”

Link to article "The Site Development Process"

Web Style Guide's article "The Site Development Process"

In a Perfect World.

Woman Web Style Guide’s extremely thorough article on how to develop, design, deploy, and maintain a “large website.”  In a perfect world, this is the way all websites would be made, and I believe to some extent each of the stages touched in the article should be discussed and worked through (from site definition and planning to information architecture, site design, site construction, site marketing, all the way to tracking/evaluation and maintenance).  But, realistically, I think the process of making and maintaining websites for 90% of the population is a much more organic and “back and forth” process; make something, see what works, see what doesn’t and make adjustments.  Sure, steps and procedures should be taken to avoid obvious problems and create obvious bonuses before launch, but beyond that, I think a large degree of flexibility and uncertainty should be embraced, if possible, in designing, deploying, and maintaining websites.  Not unlike starting a business, or making friends, or any other endeavor for that matter.

Plan Loose.

Hang LoosePlan loose I say.  Do your best to plan using what you know and have at your disposal, but try to accept that, more than likely, there’s a whole lot you can’t plan for and understand until after the fact; after deployment, after making changes.  Like how users are going to respond to (not care) whether the navigation is on the side or on top.  Especially, if you’re a small to medium sized company developing a website.  I mean, the extent of checklists and processes described in the Web Style Guide’s article, time-wise, not to mention, resource wise, are exhausting and, well, pretty boring.  Plan loose. Know what you want to do with your website, and a basic idea of how you want to do it, test out a few ideas, then go for it. If you planned loosely, there should be room to move around, make adjustments and respond to how users are using/not using your site.  Next time, you’ll do it better. (Most of the time)

Time is Short.  Do it now.

Long processes, like the one described in this article, take a lot of time, and in the present, and definitely in the future, time between change is shrinking.  So the impetus is to be flexible and changeable.  To make changes, make mistakes, but, to please, make them now.  While you’re planning, others are making, falling down, and learning.  Loads more than you can ever hope to plan for.  Have a good idea of what you want, but be willing to let it go for a better one that your users present you with.  Be flexible, plan loose, do it now.



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