Proof of Concept

Proof of Concept

Proof of Concept Jonathan Poland

A proof of concept (POC) is a demonstration that a certain idea or solution is feasible and likely to be successful. It is a way for businesses and organizations to test and validate new ideas, products, or technologies before committing significant resources to their development and implementation.

POCs are typically used to confirm that a particular concept or solution will work in the real world and meet the needs of the target audience. They can be used to evaluate the technical feasibility of a solution, assess its potential value to the organization, and determine whether it is worth pursuing further.

There are several steps involved in creating a POC, including:

  1. Defining the problem or challenge that the POC is intended to solve.
  2. Identifying the key stakeholders and decision-makers who will be involved in the POC process.
  3. Developing a plan for how the POC will be conducted, including a timeline, budget, and resources needed.
  4. Conducting the POC, which may involve building prototypes or prototypes, conducting user testing, and gathering data and feedback.
  5. Analyzing the results of the POC to determine whether the concept or solution is viable and worth pursuing further.

POCs can be useful for organizations of all sizes and in a variety of industries, as they provide a way to test and validate new ideas before committing significant resources to their development. By conducting POCs, businesses can reduce risk and make more informed decisions about which projects to pursue. The following are common approaches for developing a proof of concept.

Demo
A low budget implementation of an artistic work or technical design. For example, a songwriter who records a demo of a song at home.

Animation
Animation is commonly used as proof of concept for architecture, landscape design, interior design, engineering, product development and filmmaking.

Art
Art such as diagrams and illustrations that visualize ideas, strategies and designs. Art may tell a story such as a thought experiment that validates the concept.

Lead User
Developing a custom solution for a lead user as an exploration of product strategy.

Business Experiments
Testing business concepts with market research techniques such as focus groups and ladder interviews.

Proof of Technology
A test of a technical solution such as an algorithm that may have no user interface.

Throwaway Prototype
A low cost implementation designed to explore the viability of a design.

Evolutionary Prototype
An expensive prototype that explores cutting edge features and quality improvements. For example, a concept car developed to explore designs and features that might not be launched to market for 5 years or more.

Steel Thread
A prototype that seeks to be as minimal as possible while testing the entire end-to-end design of a project. For example, a project that will implement 200 screens for a user interface implements a single screen using the requisite architecture, design, infrastructure, platforms and components.

Horizontal Prototype
Building a complete user interface that doesn’t do anything. For example, implementing 200 screens with static data without using the requisite architecture, design, infrastructure, platforms and components.

Mockup
A prototype that looks like the end product with no functionality. For example, a scale model of a building.

Minimum Viable Product
A prototype or initial product version that is good enough to put in front of customers as a trial or pilot.

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