18
Apr 12

WebApp Development – Getting quotes you can trust

If you’ve ever tried to get a quote for a webapp project, you’ll notice that the quotes will be all over the place.  On a recent project, a client of ours gave the same project description to 5 different webdev companies and got back prices ranging from $10k to $120k.  Yikes!

The reason the numbers were so far apart is that so many details go into building a webapp.  Without that detail it’s really up to the manager at each company to fill in the blanks.  They start with their own standards and then often imagine the rest.

So how do you ensure that the quotes you get back are meaningful?  Use JumboLogic!

With JumboLogic you can design the interfaces and describe how the webapp is supposed to work.  This creates a baseline from which every company bidding on your project can provide you quotes.

If you have the idea but not the expertise to design the interfaces and flowcharts needed to explain your product we suggest you hire a project manager/system architect who can take your ideas and turn them into a specification.  This may cost from a few hundred dollars to a a few thousand but its worth it.

The time and/or cost needed to write it up is worth it.  You will more than save an equivalent amount from time and money spent trying to digest quotes and explaining your project to different companies.


17
Apr 12

Tip: Take advantage of Interface Layering!

A common issue with interface design tools is that if you want to re-arrange your template then you have to go to every page to make the change.

JumboLogic solves this problem with interface layering.

Unlike grouping, layering lets you keep a hierarchy of interface elements.  You can define certain elements as “children” of another element, the “parent”.  Moving the parent moves all of its children.  This relationship can span pages and the page hierarchy.

This means – you can re-arrange your template at will, and so long as you use layering, your entire website and all its contents will re-arrange with the template saving you time!

A video tutorial of how this works has been posted to JumboLogic U:

http://jumbologic.com/frontend/fe_tutorials.php


16
Apr 12

Why do I want my Web Developer to start with a spec?

Not all web development companies are equal.  Every company has its own process and style towards developing web apps.  Everyone starts with a description of the project provided by the client but from there on out it can vary wildly.

If you’ve ever had the experience of working with a BAD web development company, you’ve gone through at least one of these:

  • Your web developer doesn’t grasp the scope of the project and quits/disappears or asks for more money
  • Your web developer doesn’t build what you had in mind when you hired them
  • You don’t get any documentation
  • Changes/Feedback you provide get ignored or lost
  • First time you’ve seen the web app is when they’re “done”
  • Your web developer keeps missing details – they fix one thing and break another
  • They don’t provide information on how to actually use it

In our experience as a web developer we’ve seen this over and over and a large portion of our business was fixing failed projects started by other companies.

A great way to avoid these issues is to insist that they do a specification before they start programming.

So what is a specification?  

A specification is an electronic or written document that outlines what will be built and how it will work.  It typically includes interface mockups, flowcharts of processes, and documents explaining how users will use it.  It provides a crystal clear picture of your webapp.

  1. It gives you the ability to see what they are going to build.
  2. You can provide feedback before lots of hours are spent programming.
  3. You can track the progress of your project against the spec.
  4. You’ll have documentation just in case you need to move to another developer.
  5. Gives you peace of mind that your web developer understands the scope of the project and provided a real estimate.

Oftentimes, bad web development companies will start to show their true colors during the spec phase.  If necessary, this lets you escape with minimal investment of time and money.

Insist that your web developer use JumboLogic on your web or mobile app project!


16
Apr 12

Web Developers: Make Money while Saving your Customers Money

Wait?  Read that again.

You CAN make more money from your customers and save them money in the process.

Webapp projects can range from a few thousand dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars.  Designing your project with a JumboLogic spec will:

  1. Ensure your customers are involved and will know what the end result will be
  2. Let you identify holes or issues in your design before it’s built
  3. Keep your team members and customers on the same page
  4. Allow you to provide better estimates
  5. Doubles as high level documentation

 

Benefit to You, the web developer:

You can charge your client for the specification services.  Often, you are able to charge this fee up front while studying a project.  This saves you from having to spend lots of time creating estimates for projects that don’t come through.  

You will have something to reference if disagreements arise or changes need to be made.  We’ve found that the clarity to the customer saves you a lot of headaches down the road.

Benefit to your customer

Your customer will have documentation that can follow the webapp through its operational lifespan.  

Customers will also be able to provide important feedback early in the product development cycle saving valuable time and resources going in circles later on.


11
Apr 12

ATDC Startup Showcase!

We got a booth at the ATDC Startup Showcase May 14, 2012 at the Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center! Come by our booth!


11
Apr 12

JumboLogic University Released!

We released JumboLogic University – A resource for free tutorial videos on how to use JumboLogic.  We posted our first video “Creating a 2 Page Website”.  Check it out!  http://bit.ly/IHhrMY


06
Apr 12

JumboLogic released as Beta!

JumboLogic released as Beta!  You can sign up and use all the features for free.  http://www.jumbologic.com


02
Apr 12

New Website & WebFlix Video Case Study Posted!

We just completed our website for the BETA release.  We’re going to do a limited release later tonight and we’re really excited.

http://jumbologic.com

Definitely check out the video case study that we posted on the site.  We made a fictitious company called “WebFlix” which rents DVDs that you exchange by mail.  It shows how a project progresses through JumboLogic and highlights its core features/benefits.

http://jumbologic.com/frontend/fe_case_webflix.php

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