On Tuesday morning, Bryan Lipson and Mike Hughes hosted a webinar to discuss the power of the recently released iRise 10.5. Lipson, our EVP of Product Management, led off with a quick overview of iRise’s general mission.
“We want to help teams deliver better software in less time,” he said, adding that our focus in that regard is on how teams elicit and document requirements. “We’re focused on requirements, or definition, or ‘product discovery,’ because despite all the time and money and resources that have been invested in various techniques, we’re still seeing project success rates that are far too low.”
How people communicate and validate one of most significant factors affecting project success, he said, before turning to why requirements are so challenging.
“We’ve worked with hundreds of teams,” he said. “It’s not that they don’t know how to gather requirements or write user stories, but because the format and volume of information makes reviewing them with stakeholders next to impossible.”
Taking 10.5 for a spin
The demonstration featured a number of highlights of the new 10.5 release. Bryan demonstrated how to log in and start a new product using the web-based Editor. He was able to choose from a series of starter templates for web, iPhone or iPad apps, and there were some UX tool kits, all designed to give users a good starting point. These templates are also customizable, allowing you to create templates for your company.
He also demonstrated the ability to take photos of a paper sketch, a whiteboard drawing and use those as the starting point for a prototype, layering real design elements and clickable hotspots over the rough drawing. In seconds, he was able to add complex variables like two-factor authentication, setting up a dynamic page based on the actions or conditions the app might require.
The ability to create such a robust prototype, Bryan noted, helps prevent inconsistent user experience by visualizing the application elements early, and making sure they’re consistent with the existing backlog. Of course, rapid prototyping also allows you to get agreement about design and functionality, and validate ideas—or quickly iterate a new version that’s closer to the desired mark.
During the webinar Bryan Lipson referenced the ability to create screens and hotspots on your iPhone, as seen above.
iRise 10.5: Integrated with leading ALM tools
After Bryan’s presentation, Mike Hughes, our senior director of customer solutions, took control and demonstrated our integrations with leading ALM tools, both directly through our platform and through the 30-odd integrations available through our partnership with Tasktop. He walked the audience through making a status change made to a prototype on the iRise platform and seeing it show up nearly instantly in another tool—in this case, in a live exchange with Jira.
He demonstrated how to capture requirements in the browser, associate them with the prototype being designed, and even carry on conversations, chatting with collaborators near and far about any aspect of the project.
“You can also link to other user stories,” Mike noted, “perhaps because they’ll have code in common.”
He also demonstrated the ease with which you can create diagrams, with the same ability to follow chat-based discussions and capture requirements. Templates allow you to quickly dive into journey maps, storyboards, affinity diagrams and more, all of which can be used by teams separated by distance and time zone.
Mike closed with a hint of what’s currently in beta: Public projects, which will allow users to share a prototype outside the team—with a URL accessible without needing an iRise account, for cases when, say, you want a legal team to review the copy on a prototype that’s still being designed. We’re looking to roll that out soon to the entire user base, but right now it’s in beta (interested users could email email@example.com for more, y’know, info).
The webinar is available for on-demand replay right here at the top of this page.