Prototyping with XHTML

Recently I worked on a PHP application, where I refactored the HTML output of an existing implementation into my PHP implementation. At the time, the initial implementation was abandonware and the author had supplied us with a database dump but no source code. Eventually we got the perl source code to use as a reference implementation. Along the way I thought about the idea of using HTML as a general wireframe prototyping mechanism for web applications: start with some HTML mockup and when it feels right to the customer, start refactoring the HTML wireframe into the actual implementation.

At Agile Roots 2010 there was a lightning talk session where you could speak for 5 minutes on any topic you desired. Based on my experience of test-driven development in PHP, I gave a lightning talk on the idea of using HTML as a wireframe prototyping strategy for web applications. One of the people attending the conference was Anders Ramsay who had written an article in April titled Prototyping with XHTML. If you’re interested in this idea, I highly recommend reading Anders’s article.