As you build your project there are 3 processes you will need to undertake to ensure your project will work on your intended end-user system ...
- Profile your potential end-users (who is the project aimed at?) and the computer systems they will be using to view your project.
- Determine a minimum system requirements for your target end-user computer setup that you can reasonably expect your end-users to have access to.
- Build your project in such a way that it will run on the end-user computer system.
1 Profiling end-users
You must consider the following issues when profiling your end-user ...
... such as ...
Where will they be viewing the project? At home, school, internet cafe, college, work etc? It may not be possible for your end-user to install plug-ins that your site requires (Flash, Shockwave, Acrobat Reader etc)if they are at work or school using a networked computer under the control of an IT manager.
You will need to know the following about the end-user system ...
- Screen size Screen size is perhaps the most important decision you will need to make. Click here for help on making the right decision.
- RAM Will they have enough to run your project?
- Processor speed
- Sound playback facilities ... headphones? speakers?
- Optical drive type (CDROM or DVDROM)
- Optical drive speed
Mac OS9, Mac OSX, Unix, DOS, Windows 95, 98, 2000, XP? All these systems have their differencies and if you want your project to run on all of them you will have to design it carefully. On the other hand, if it is only going to run on an intranet or kiosk, you will know the exact specification and can author for it. Get stats here.
What type and how fast? Dial up, broadband?
Plug-ins / file helpers
Have they got the Flash, Shockwave, QuickTime, PDF etc plug-ins installed? Can they easliy install them?
2 Minimum system requirements
Minimum system requirements are a list of hardware and software elements of a computer system required in order that a project plays adequately.