As I come to the end of my app prototyping project I find myself incredibly impressed with all that I’ve accomplished. I’ve never thought that I’d be able to create such a professional looking medium to high fidelity prototype that is 100% my own. I’m so proud of the work I’ve done and all that I’ve achieved through this process. Not to mention how much I enjoyed every step. It’s such a rewarding feeling knowing that I’m learning something that I will take with me throughout my entire life and that these skills will help me go far in my career. I’m so excited to share My Mountainside with you.
Now that I’ve expressed how much I enjoyed this project, let’s get into some of the struggles I had while creating my app, My Mountainside. I found it easy to come up with different aspects of the app and place myself in the shoes of the user, but I struggled putting it all together. What I mean by that is drawing prototypes on paper is one thing, but having to make sure that all of your uploaded medium to high fidelity hot spots click to the right places and having to play it 100 different times 100 different ways can get challenging.
I was so nervous that I had missed a link or misconnected something that I found myself asking anybody with a spare couple of minuets to try out my app and see if they ran into any issues. Something else I found myself surprisingly struggling with was design. Sure I’m a designer and I can make a logo or some art without a sweat but apps are different. Everything is smaller! I found myself thinking about what I would like to see if I was a grandma looking to sign up for some events or a newcomer looking for some local restaurants. It was challenging, I won’t lie but that’s what guided me to my final design decision.
Simplicity was the name of the game with my prototype. I wanted people of all ages to be able to easily find what they were looking for. I wasn’t interested in symbols or widgets because as someone that had previously worked for my town, I know that most of the people signing up for things are a part of the older generation. The app needed to be simple because they tend to be slightly more technologically challenged.
So as I mentioned above I previously worked for my town and found myself at my town hall quite a bit, especially in the Parks and Recreation department. This experience definitely gave me a leg up when designing my app. I can’t explain how many times I had to walk through with somebody on the phone something that could have been easily done on the computer. If I was going to create an app that was going to be used for all ages, it really had to be for all ages. That’s why when I was looking back some of my high fidelity pages might seem more medium, but it’s really because I wanted to keep the design and layout super simple.
I think this simplistic design can be seen executed well below:
In both the above frames I stressed to make sure that each option was easy to read in bold type and clickable options were made obvious. I didn’t want my user to struggle in figuring out where they should be.
Another design choice I made was sticking to a simple color palette. Again I did this with simplicity in mind but also for a bit of town pride as our town’s colors are green and white. Although now I’m wondering if that’s normal. Do other towns have town colors or is that just us? Either way I thought it would be a nice addition and the colors are simply enough to provide a strong background or highlight color when necessary.
I’ve mentioned in previously posts that this wasn’t my first time creating an app prototype so I was familiar with much of the process. That being said taking an app prototype to the final stages like this and making decisions with decision and having users involved in every step was new to me. The process was exciting and new and I learned so much. It wasn’t always easy but that might be what I enjoyed most about this process, that I always had great feedback to guide me in the right direction.
You can watch a play through of My Mountainside that I’ve screen recorded below, I’ve also included the link to play through the app yourself. I hope you enjoy playing the app because I certainly enjoyed making it!