HTML Prototyping 101 - Offline Mode


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HTML Prototyping 101 - Build with the assumption you’ll be demoing them without an internet connection

It won’t come as a surprise when I say building an HTML prototype from the comfort of the office is a lot different than building on public transport. Limited seating, the constant flow of passengers, the flaky and expensive onboard internet connection are just a few of the contributing factors that make it a less than ideal environment for productivity.

However, in the interest of progress, clients must be seen and work must be presented. So it’s on the 07.12 London-bound train from Brighton that Rich{:target="_blank"}, Jon{:target="_blank"} and I find ourselves reviewing a prototype while deprived of the one office luxury we’ve grown so accustomed to: a stable and generous internet connection.

The sudden change in conditions exposed our over-reliance of such a luxury.

  1. Missing images from using placeholder content services such as
  2. Javascript errors from an unreachable CDN-hosted version of jQuery

Rectifying the problems was straight forward enough and after pushing/pulling changes over our now-we-get-it-now-we-don’t mobile phone hotspots we were back into review mode.

Why does this matter? Surely it’s safe to assume any office working in the web is going to have a reliable and high-speed internet connection? Maybe what’s a little more uncertain is how they provide that connection to external teams.

Having the safety net pulled from beneath me has taught the value in being prepared, in this case considering the technical parameters that could go wrong. Having the work done and collectively agreed on the objectives of the playback is one thing, but being equipped with the confidence that you can deliver what you’ve intended to deliver is crucial to the success of the playback.

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