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Designing for the Digital Age: How to Create Human-Centered Products and Services by Kim Goodwin

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Chapter 24. Communicating Detailed Design

Communicating Detailed Design

The fate of your design is determined in part by how effectively you communicate about it with both stakeholders and engineers. As discussed in Chapter 22, frequent collaboration is essential to communicating and evolving detailed design. However, more formal communication is nearly always required. A detailed representation of the final product helps stakeholders be patient during the long implementation process. A clear and detailed blueprint for construction—manufacturing in the case of physical products and production coding in the case of software—helps ensure effective translation from design to finished product. Your communication must be particularly thorough and unambiguous in the event that you're not around during implementation, which may happen if you're a consultant or using outsourced engineering.

A form and behavior specification—abbreviated as the "F&BS"at Cooper, tongue firmly in cheek—describes every visible aspect of the product's form and behavior. This isn't limited to physical controls and pixels; it also includes everything from workflow to evident business rules, such as how long messages stay in a phone's inbox or how much battery time remains when a device asks to be plugged in.

What the specification does not include is any calculation or structure affecting the back end: how server loads are balanced, how the device ...

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