Category: website functional requirements/feature plan


It’s end of Week 3 and some more homework submitted. Yesterday in class, we discussed previous homework’s and the importance of quantitative data the will you, as a web designer/developer would use to measure your progress toward the “Smart” goal. As Adam pointed, it may not matter that much if  it’s your own website, but it does with a client. Where I am concerned, I always presumed this would be a definite time-line. You I did put some thought in it and yes quantitative goals such as”40 people to fill request form” or say, “A certain now of hits or views on a specific page in the website” could classify as quantitative data and you would need to define or help the client focus on these quantitative goals rather than just time-line.

This week was drawing some navigational site diagrams and charting out the functional requirements of the website work flow. A navigational site-map outlines the flow that a user might take in navigating through your website. I had fun playing with the newest trial version of Microsoft Visio. I have used it before but the current version always makes it easier and I figured there’s no better time to try it than now 🙂 I looked up http://webstyleguide.com/wsg3/3-information-architecture/4-presenting-information.html for more information – a helpful article.

The other document was the Functional Requirements/Feature Plan document. The idea of developing this one is that another web professional who could understand the needs well enough to build the functionality with almost no additional information. I did get down to some detail on this one and yes, took a lot of my time. On the positive side, it resolved a few issues. It gave me an idea how the site map and requirements go hand in hand. Also I now knew how many pages I really had in the website and how the web pages linked to one another. I also chalked out some wireframe diagrams  on what I really needed constant on the template,  in terms of content on each page.

Here are a few other links I have been reading:

http://blog.craigslist.org/ ( Craigslist CEO blog….interesting!)

http://online-social-networking.com/ (An interesting approach on social media)

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A great Memorial Day weekend spent with family…now back to bloggin…. and of course working on Week 3! I won’t say I did not do any part of the homework but some of the external information architecture links posted by Adam were indeed thought provoking. I would like to share my thoughts (while lazing in the sun next to a pool!!!) on these:

  • http://www.boxesandarrows.com/view/site_diagrams_mapping_an_information_space
    Wow! I thought site diagrams were going to be a piece of cake!!! Well, now that I am back on ground (was flying high thinking I could easily ace these site diagrams) I am not so sure 😦 I learned a lot from the article and intend to use some concepts in my homework for Week 3. The diagrammatic approach is very important in Information architecture , the information has to be concise and precise.
  • http://evolt.org/article/Web_Site_Architecture_101/4090/635/index.html
    A simplistic approach to help you understand how effective navigation can help a website. I think this comes as a boon to web designers like me who waste a little too much time into details that do not matter 🙂 What matters is getting relevant information in the quickest time to the user, Having 20,000 pages is not the solution! The “Aside:” comments and the scheme diagram is useful to understand the navigation concept and laying out your web-pages.
  • http://www.digital-web.com/articles/ia_as_an_extension_of_web_design/
    I like how Joshua (the author) likes to integrate the two aspects: Information architecture and Web Design. It’s hard to see these two getting married, often people tend to side one over the other but both in their own way play a key role. I think it is interesting to understand how both can work their way into the common Wed tasks as he described: Navigation, Layout and Code. I also like the idea about not having boundaries and keeping both roles open to experiment. That way, we don’t have preferences and that will surely expedite the web development process.