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Prototyping isn’t for every project, but for those that are, it can be a tremendous asset.

The prototyping model is a systems development methodology (SDM) in which a prototype (an early design of a final system or product) is built, tested, and then reworked as necessary until an acceptable prototype is finally achieved from which the complete system or product can be developed. A prototype serves as a disposable model created to understand the requirements of a project before design and coding begins. In essence, prototyping is a test run for the project.

Here’s the general prototype industry process step-by-step:

  • Requirement Gathering
  • Quick Design
  • Building Prototype
  • Engineer Product
  • Refining Prototype
  • Customer Evaluation

Prototypeshttps://www.mfgproto.com/ have been the early models for many of history’s great technological advances, including the invention of the wheel, the telephone and the internet.

The worst thing that can happen to a prototype is that customers mistake it for the finished project. Customers who see a rough prototype may not understand that it is just a model that needs to be finished or polished.

Prototypes are commonly used in the design and development of physical projects when large systems are being built or manufactured. For projects based on software, with many changing variables and unknown logistics, prototypes are invaluable. There is a misconception that prototypes aren’t a viable option for projects with tight deadlines. However, with 3D printing, prototyping is comparatively quick and shouldn’t slow the project down too much.

However, for projects that require trial and error, prototyping is an essential component to ensure optimal success. However, you must ensure that you have the budget and time to devote to a prototyping project. If you do, the payback can be immense – just look at the iPhone.

The advantages of prototyping

  • Reduce time and cost: Prototyping improves the quality of specifications and requirements provided to customers. With prototyping, customers can anticipate cost increases, required changes, potential project roadblocks and, most importantly, potential end result disasters. Strong prototyping ensures product quality and saves costs for years to come.
  • Improve and increase user involvement: Most customers want to feel involved in the intricate details of a project. Prototyping requires user involvement, allowing them to see and interact with a working model of the project. With prototypes, clients can provide immediate feedback, request project changes and modify model specifications. Most importantly, prototyping helps eliminate misunderstandings and miscommunication during the development process.
  • Save time and money: Nothing makes a customer happier than a project that comes in under budget. Prototyping improves the quality of the requirements and specifications provided to the customer. Necessary changes discovered late in development can cost exponentially more to implement. With prototyping, you can identify end-user needs early, allowing you to develop software faster and at a lower cost.

The Disadvantages of Prototyping

Unfortunately, no project development model is perfect – perhaps oxygen plus hydrogen equals water. Carefully weigh the disadvantages of prototyping before deciding to implement it in project development.

  • Insufficient analysis: Focusing on a limited prototype distracts developers from properly analysing the entire project. Potential end results: You may overlook better solutions, produce incomplete specifications, or turn a limited prototype into a poorly designed, hard-to-maintain final product.
  • User confusion: The worst thing that can happen to a prototype is that the client mistakes it for the final project. Clients often see a rough prototype and may not realize it simply needs finishing or polishing. They may also mistakenly believe that the prototype accurately simulates the performance of the final system. Customers may also develop a preference for prototype features that are not part of the final system.
  • Developer misunderstanding of user goals: For any project to be successful, developers and clients must be on the same page and share the same project goals. When customers demand that the final product include all the prototype’s proposed features, it can cause team and task conflicts.
  • Too long a development time: Remember that the essence of prototyping is rapid development. If developers spend too much time developing complex prototypes, projects will hit roadblocks (especially if there is disagreement about the details of the prototype) and exceed time and cost budgets.
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