It's time to start talking about my "Breakable Toy". I suppose I should first start by explaining what exactly a breakable toy is:
For Launch Academy, a big part of the learning process is practical application of knowledge, almost immediately upon grasping a concept. To that end, we are encouraged to conceptualize a computer program/web application that we would enjoy constructing. That is our breakable toy. The breakable component relates to the fact that this toy provides us a safe place to experiment with knowledge as we gain it, knowing that, if it breaks, there is no harm - only a learning opportunity from which our skills will improve.
I've decided to build a tool to help construct an autobiography. Almost like a retro-active blog. I would like to create something that provokes the user with specific questions, designed to stir up memories, and then capture them, along with time and place details, so that memoir pieces can be indexed and presented graphically in a timeline. I hope to incorporate important information about what was happening in the world at the time that a specific memory comes from - i.e. headlines, top 40 hits, etc. with the goal of providing context for the memory, and hopefully clarity for the user about details that might otherwise be overlooked. I find that memories are often provoked by ancillary events that were happening at the same time as the memory - especially music.
In the last week I've worked with user stories about how a person would interact with my toy, and wire-framing, which is just drawing how I think the site should look, at a very high level. User stories are not easy! Try explaining how a person drives a car without overlooking the slightest detail - such and explaining to the user details such as knowing how to find the car in the parking lot! Lots of details necessary to flesh out successful user stories.