Tips for software application development
When thinking about Computer Science, the first few things that come to the mind is standard desktops, movies like transformers, software and Bill Gates. Among all, one of the most interesting elements is Application Development.
Many years ago, at the dawn of the technological era, applications were designed to perform simple tasks, i.e. calculating. But today a whole different world can be created through Applications, and its purposes are diversified into many roots.
However drilling them down, the core of all application development is the same and there are a few key points to keep in mind when developing any application.
1. Customer is key
Before developing a solution, it is vital to know the purpose of the creation. Listening to the customer and asking questions will help to understand what exactly he or she requires and also to get to know who is going to use it (end user), since it is the end user who uses the application, and therefore the key focus should be on “how easily the end user can use it”.
So in order to develop more effective solutions, developers should analyse the customer, then create different illustrations to show how the outcome can be achieved in different ways.
However developers need to be welcoming to modify or change the development at any moment, depending on what the customer wants.
Finally, create a requirement scope to ensure that the customer and the developer are on the same page.
Usability needs to be layered with creative solutions.
Creativity is not bombarding the application with technical jargon or being extremely colourful. Rather creativity in application development is looking through the smallest detail of information and creating a masterpiece that satisfies the expectations of the customer For example, Skype uses a creative interface which is simple and also the first of its kind.
Therefore in order to activate creativity in application development: one can research about similar applications, understand and feel how such applications function, gather ideas and try them out.
But it is extremely important than you do not copy them, simply because it is someone else’s creation not yours!
3. Clear Goal
Applications are expected to be simple, with many objectives. But the development should be driven through a clear, primary goal.
A goal that defines “what you do,why it is done and how you do it”. This will enact as a sole mission guide for the development. It is vital to keep in mind how the flexibility of databases, interfaces and structures should be maintained, as customer requirements may change at any phase.
Application developments can be described as a form of art, and only the user can see and feel the end result.
Therefore the user needs to understand how the application functions without any hassle. So in order to create such a platform, all interfaces need to be eye catching, simple and easy to understand and use. For example all alerts and error messages need to be something that would inform and not scare the user (One of the best examples is Microsoft Office). Below shows the difference between a meaningless error message and an appropriate one.
Similarly, the type of information that is handled needs to be noted, because different types of information need to be managed and prioritized differently (i.e if the system works with sensitive data, then “security must be first”).
5. Testing before Implementation
To create a successful, unique and usable application, applications are required to be tested through a 360 degree appraisal. Making sure the application is used by a target user base will help to find bugs and errors before presenting it to the product owner (your client).
A BQu App Developer suggests that “If you are new developer, let your parents try it, if they understand and are able to use it without a hassle, you’ve won!”
In conclusion, all the stages in development is important to make an effective application, but the best part is how each developer handles it. “Software application development is a continuous learning process, more like writing an encyclopaedia. You have to gather knowledge, and then represent that knowledge in the code to achieve the final goal” – Irantha Jayasekara, BQu Application developer.