We were creating a tool for ourselves and we really didn’t want it to suck. It was a tool we needed so whatever it became had to be useful. It should also be useful to the people of Toronto, helping them find a place to live.
We wanted the experience to be refreshing. The tools for search should deliver results seconds after landing on the site. By refreshing listings often, users would have a reason to come back.
We wanted to make the tool as easy to use as possible, the interactions should need no tutorial and the site itself should need less than a line of copy. Mapitat was not our primary business so the product had to stand on its own.
Since this was an internal project, it should be fun. We wanted to challenge ourselves with a rapid development process and be delighted with every incremental result. The tight timeframe created the perfect constraint to remove complex oversight and create a free-flowing team dynamic.
The strategy was simple: we had a few spare man hours, a real world need, and a lot of passion. We had seen the effort put forth by people in the space and saw an opportunity to design a more elegant solution. The idea was to build fast, review progress daily and fail as quickly as possible. With it being a completely internal project, all of the copy, design and engineering required very few approvals. If we liked something we went with it. We quickly went from tech demo and mood boards to consumer product. We had 3 weeks and we made the most of them.