Salisbury Cathedral –  Magna Carta Mobile App

For 2015 BU’s RedBalloon Agency has been commissioned to create an app for Salisbury Cathedrals Magna Carta exhibition. The app has been proposed as a series of exploratory interactive and educational works that can be accessed while walking round Salisbury Cathedral. We have been given the following live brief as part of the ‘Applied Design’ unit of the (BA) Digital Media Design course at Bournemouth University. For this assignment we will be forming a small agency with 4 or 5 colleagues and with that agency we will be creating one component of RedBalloons mobile device application. The project will involve a design agency that will provide style guidance and maintain consistency throughout the project and our individual components. We will be required to take a number of investigatory visits to Salisbury Cathedral to record and generate material for these individual components. The exact nature of the app elements produced will be developed in conjunction with RedBalloon and Salisbury Cathedral throughout the unit. Potential designs could include games, treasure hunts, virtual reality and or video elements. For the purposes of this project I researched key product management methodologies and logistics in order to suggest a suitable development approach to the project. Two distinct methodology processes I explored included the Agile method and the Waterfall method.

The Agile method offers an incredibly flexible design model, promoting adaptive planning and evolutionary development. With customer feedback occurring simultaneously within the development stage, this method is seen to employ many key advantages. One advantage being that there is an ability to respond rapidly and effectively to changes of requirements within the development stage of a project. In addition, it is beneficial in situations where the end-goals of projects are not clearly defined. With response to the project in-hand the end-goals of the project are not clearly defined, and are extremely experimental in its focus of boundaries and limitations. Therefore, changes of requirements within the development stage are key to allow for change and any further developments. The Agile method facilitates for interaction and communication amongst designers and stakeholders and it is especially conducive to teamwork oriented environments, such as the ‘Applied Design’ live project (Mikoluk 2013).

agile_methodology_overview

The Waterfall method on the other hand is incredibly rigid and inflexible, requiring extensive planning, documentation and a clear vision. Altering the project design at any stage in the project can be a total nightmare and once a stage has been completed, it is nearly impossible to make changes to it (Mikoluk 2013). In response to the project brief this method would not be suitable, because it does not allow for change of requirements nor further development.

Gould and Lewis (1985) state ‘getting it [design] right the first time, is not achievable in user interface design. Yet use of iteration is not an excuse for being sloppy in the first time’. This suggests that change can be inevitable and getting it right the first time is not always achievable.

350px-Waterfall_model_(1).svg

Throughout the ‘Applied Design’ live project I have chosen to follow the Agile methodology as a process of development. This is due to the fact that the method allows for change and further developments, as well as effective interaction and communication between teams.

Furthermore, I plan to mind map different areas of interest for the design of the individual component to then pitch to my fellow colleagues in next weeks seminar. These ideas will then be developed onto a mood board to justify our idea proposals and to help form a relative small agency for our chosen interests of this ‘Applied Design’ live project.

References

Gould, J.D., and Lewis, C.H., 1985. Designing for usability: Key principles and what designers think. Communications of the ACM, 300-311.

Mikoluk, K.M., 2013. Agile Vs. Waterfall: Evaluating The Pros And Cons[online]. Udemy Blog. Available from: http://blog.udemy.com/agile-vs-waterfall/ %5BAccessed 5 February 2015].

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