Project Description

ActiveStory is a tool for designing and performing usability testing on an application in a manner that is inline with Agile principles. Designers can sketch UIs, add interactions and export the design to the Internet via a built in web Wizard of Oz system.

Introduction

Agile software development has been picking up momentum constantly over the least few years, however, as more companies and developers adopt agile methods, an unease regarding the lack of attention to usability concerns has also surfaced. Agile teams strive to produce high quality software for a minimum cost. They often are good at producing useful software – but sometimes usability takes a backseat.

ActiveStory is a tool developed for the purpose of designing and performing usability testing on an application in a manner that is inline with Agile principles. Our tool allows designers to sketch user interfaces, add interactions and finally export the design to the Internet via a built in web-based Wizard of Oz Testing system. Designers can use either a drawing tablet or tablet PC to further optimize the design experience and bring it closer to an actual pen and paper design feel.

ActiveStory Enhanced is an updated, .NET version of the original ActiveStory tool, both written here at the University of Calgary Agile Software Engineering lab. For more information about ActiveStory Enhanced see the Tool Description page.

The solution for the design tool as well as the code for the ASP.NET portions of the web-based Wizard of Oz Testing Tool have been uploaded to CodePlex. An installer for the latest release is also available (ActiveStory Enhanced RC1).

Feel free to use the tool and please provide feedback if you do.

Notes

  • Make sure to set the startup project for the SilverlightWoZ solution to StandaloneSilverlightWoZ.Web if you plan on running the solution from within Visual Studio.
  • If you would like to use the Cassini web server option, you must download and install the UltiDev Cassini Web Server for ASP.NET 2.0 (available here: http://www.ultidev.com/download/RegisterAndDownload.aspx?ProductID=f6c8daed-8cc7-43fd-9da4-1f629b873a17. You can avoid using IIS that way, if you don't have access to an IIS server or just want to use the WoZ tool locally. It will also work over the internet, however that isn't recommended. IIS is recommended if you're hosting the usability test site over the web.

Screenshots

  • Office Style

screenshotOfficeStyle.PNG
  • Silverlight Wizard of Oz Testing Tool

WoZReports.png
  • Silverlight WoZ Reports Tool

WoZTest.PNG
  • Standard Style

screenshotStandardStyle.png

Last edited Nov 30, 2009 at 5:13 PM by AlexDP, version 14