Tuesday, January 13th, 2009

Web Development Project Estimator

Category: Showcase

Matt Everson built a simple little micro app for project estimation: Web Development Project Estimator:

Although most web designers have an idea of how long a project will take based on their past experience, far too often this guess becomes a final estimate. If you’ve ever been 300+ hours into a project that’s paying you for 100, I’m sure you know first hand why this can be a serious problem for a business. Up until now, I’ve used an excel spreadsheet to help me estimate accurately. About a month ago though, it occurred to me that I could make this calculator into a sweet little online tool. I figured it can only lead to more accurate estimates, stronger web businesses, and a better valuation of what we do as designers.

Of course, the fun is tracking how close you come to the estimator :)

Posted by Dion Almaer at 8:19 am

2.6 rating from 43 votes


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Using Spreadsheets in Google docs offers much more capabilities, e.g. it’s easy to share the estimation.

Comment by Stormbringer — January 13, 2009

Does not work at all with Opera 9.60. Too bad for a tool designed for and by webdevelopers :(

Comment by Remi — January 13, 2009

Does this offer any benefit over a Google Spreadsheet? Specific drawbacks I see:
– There’s no easy way to inspect the formulas.
– There’s no way to share it with anyone (data is stored in browser cookie. fail.)
– There’s no way to customize data and formulas to account for personal business process requirements. E.g. to set up a table of known rates and refer to those.

Comment by broofa — January 13, 2009

I agree this does not offer any benefit over a spreadsheet. But there’s a lot of freelance web designers/developers who don’t have an estimating process at all. It was created for them. I could have just distributed my own spreadsheet, but that wouldn’t be much fun.

The Opera issue will certainly be fixed at some point. Sorry ’bout that.

Comment by astuteo — January 13, 2009

How about it is just simply easy to use. Reason enough for me to use it.

Comment by sds — January 13, 2009

Congrats, a reinvent of a 5 “minute-to-create” spreedsheet, how impressive… ;)
Slow day on the news Dion…?

Comment by ThomasHansen — January 13, 2009

Ever heard of a spreadsheet?

Remind me not to hire you, or you might charge me for your time goofing off :)

Comment by SteveTheKiwi — January 13, 2009

Hmmm, an ajax site and you guys are chiding him for NOT using a spreadsheet. Shame on you all. I’d use it as well.

Comment by rXc3NtR1c — January 13, 2009

I find this useful, systematic and time saver… Nice one… thanks

Comment by businesscards — January 13, 2009

Just blew the dust off of my Opera install and upgraded to 9.63. It works just fine.

Proving once again that there is no idea beneath your ridicule. Stay classy dude.

Ever hear of toolsets designed for beginners or those taking a first step toward practiced time management?

I think this is a cool little app – love the inline editing. It’s quick, clean and easy and with a few improvements, could serve a lot of people well. Good work.

Comment by jdenton — January 13, 2009

My point was that I think there are probably more important things to write about, don’t you think so…?

Comment by ThomasHansen — January 14, 2009

jdenton : wierd bug => sometimes, it works (progressive enhancements are done) and sometimes not : I still have all the text inputs, the default button at the bottom and no JS is working. Using Opera Error Console (I should use DragonFly to confirm), I cannot see any error.
I’m using Opera 9.60 under RHEL5. When I got time, I will upgrade to 9.63 to check if it solve the issue.

Comment by Remi — January 14, 2009

I think it’s a great little tool! Not everything has to reinvent the world. Every tool has a purpose, not every tool solves every problem for every person. Great job on this one man!

Comment by slajax — January 16, 2009

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