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GUI versus System

This is a balance I never get right when building a new system, inevitably I either have a grogeous UI and a fragile, hackneyed underlying system or   a fantastic system design (so, loose coupling between strata, usable caching strategy, secure authorisation system, flexible templating etc...) and a UI that looks like it belongs in the early sixties on a hippy commune (let's say messy ). I guess this is partly me; I have trouble context switching when building complex apps; and partly the nature of the development culture at my current company; single man with occasional designer input.
Anyway, anyone have any advice on how to merge these two areas? What tricks do you use to get great UIs as well as good application design?

Print | posted on Wednesday, October 20, 2004 12:31 PM | Filed Under [ .NET ASP.NET ]

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# re: GUI versus System

I usually find it easier trying to design most of the UI before I start on the business / data layers.

That way I have a good idea about how I want to present my data and what exactly I want to do with it. It makes it easier to catch things that you've missed and adding them to the spec.

Also when working with clients, the thing that they are most picky with is by far the UI, so having that signed off as early in the development process as possible helps alot in the long run since you wont have to go back and change it later on (and risk having to change the business objects that it uses aswell).

Not to mention, it gives the clients something to look at, so they can get a feel for how the project is progressing :)

10/20/2004 1:49 PM | Nicolai Sorensen

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# re: GUI versus System

Nicolai, totally true, and I would prefer to have this too (I've been trying to push Paper Prototyping here forever...but getting nowhere)

10/20/2004 2:58 PM | Scott Galloway

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# re: GUI versus System

maybe you need more time?

in application 1 you proove us you know how to write nice GUI.
in application 2 you proove us you know how to tackle with complex data architecture

on the overall you proove us you understimate the time required to to do both ...

--
PS: my crappy web page should benefit from a lifting soon ;-)

10/22/2004 5:44 AM | Lloyd

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# re: GUI versus System

Umm...yes...well I've been writing web applications for a living for more than 12 years now. For me it's more about finding the balance between the two elements - the sites I eventually produce are totally fulfilling the clients needs - it's more of a perception of my own style which I'm talking about...

10/22/2004 7:30 AM | Scott Galloway

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