4 Replies Latest reply on Dec 18, 2009 1:45 PM by ehusar

    What comes first, chicken or the egg?

    ACFlex

      So I am new to Flex, and I am new to actual programming, but I have experience in UI design.  My question for all of you Flex gurus is...as I am starting a project running solo, and I am not sure if I should start laying out the application visually first, then add the underlying coding and linkage, or should it start with the code piece by piece, then rework the layout to be appealing...

       

      Thanks for your amazing support!

       

      Rich

        • 1. Re: What comes first, chicken or the egg?
          msakrejda Level 4

          That really depends on what you're most comfortable with, but for what it's worth, I usually start with the "guts" first, and then do some experimental UI exploration (usually in a completely "sandbox" project), then connect everything together.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: What comes first, chicken or the egg?
            Gregory Lafrance Level 6

            I think it depends on what you will untimately do with this project, and with how much time you have.

             

            If you don't have much time and will sell this project when it is complete, I would do some design work first, to flesh-out the workflows, as that will determine moch of the business logic.

             

            If you have more time and are doing this just to learn Flex, spend less time planning the design and jump in, because you'll do more rework, and that means you'll learn more.

             

            If this post answers your question or helps, please mark it as such.


            Greg Lafrance
            www.ChikaraDev.com

            Flex Development and Support Services

            1 person found this helpful
            • 3. Re: What comes first, chicken or the egg?
              JeffryHouser Level 4

              Short answer:  build the UI first.

               

              Traditionally development has done from the data up.  So, the programmer would take a look at what data was needed to collect, architect the database, build the data access components, and then the interface on top of that.  So, building the UI came last and is often built to support the data.  I call this the "bottom up" approach.  The problem is that, to most users, the UI is the application.  Not giving them the ability to review that UI until the last step can make for time consuming and expensive changes.

               

              A 'new' approach is to build the interface first, or a prototype of the interface.  Let the users play around with it so they are comfortable.  In theory, they will easily spot something that will prevent them from being productive with the program.  From the UI, you can then build your data access objects / service layer, and from there create the database.  In this approach, the data supports the UI not the other way around.  I call this the "top down" approach.

               

              So, I'd build the UI first--especially since that is where your skill set lies--and then fill in the rest of the application based on the needs of the UI.

              • 4. Re: What comes first, chicken or the egg?
                ehusar Level 1

                I have to agree with Jeffery this one.  I used to be a graphic artist back in the day so I am a very visual person. Looks is what gets you in the door or gets people excited at first glance. But that being said, if it doesn't work in the end looks are not going to help. I recently converted to Flex and usually put part of the UI together first to get my head around the feel of the app. I will then come back in and work on the guts to get it functional to a prototype state. Then back to the UI for polish and finally end with final code changes.

                 

                But in the end do what works best for your workflow to be as efficient as possible.