We recently received a two page REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL for a ‘Social Network Site’:
[…] has developed a concept that requires the development of a niche social network solution, incorporating some of the most innovative features of Web 2.0: RoR, Social Networks with extensive search features, Web Services, Blogs, Tagging, Photo Management, RSS, Internal Messaging, etc. Users are able to sign up, create a profile with pictures and personal data, set preferences and demographic information. This site differentiates itself from the other social networks by providing innovative features in a specific niche.
[…] would like the site to contain the following features.
- User Registration
- User Profile Setup
- User addition to a Network
- Photo management
- Ability to post personal blogs
- Ability to comment on a members profile
- Messaging capabilities
- RSS integration
- Ability to search the social network with varying search parameters
- External partner data feed and integration through SOAP/XML API’s
- Extensive niche specific features (further details in Phase 2).
Based on this information, we were asked to ‘provide a detailed estimate with breakdown by task (description of task, duration, total number of hours, etc.). ’ and to ‘a timeline for completion of the project (start date, completion date, milestones)’. Within 5 days.
Maybe I’m being arrogant here, but I don’t see how someone can realistically expect a developer to write a fixed time, fixed budget proposal based on this game of buzzword bingo. Can you?