As you plan and troubleshoot your project, you will find it helpful to create test versions of parts of your project in the form of prototypes or wireframes.
Prototypes are simplified test versions of a project or part of a project. Typically, a prototype focuses on process. Does the tool you are using work to achieve your goals? Have you figured out what steps are required? The prototype might include elements of how things look, but the goal is to produce a working model that is simpler or rougher than your final version will be.
A wireframe is a sketch of your project’s organization and appearance, using placeholder content. While it is most frequently used for web pages and other digital presentations, it can be used whenever you want to focus on the arrangement and interaction of different parts of a project.
Both wireframes and prototypes allow you to clarify your process and goals for your project before you devote too much time to things that are unnecessary or don’t work. They can also help you structure your workflow better by identifying things like how format your data, what pieces you are missing, and how much time different steps take.