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An array of prototypes leading to the final design.

A prototype is an early sample, model, or release of a product built to test a concept or process or to act as a thing to be replicated or learned from.<ref name=":0">{{#invoke:Citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=journal }}</ref> It is a term used in a variety of contexts, including semantics, design, electronics, and software programming. A prototype is designed to test and try a new design to enhance precision by system analysts and users. Prototyping serves to provide specifications for a real, working system rather than a theoretical one.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> In some workflow models, creating a prototype (a process sometimes called materialization) is the step between the formalization and the evaluation of an idea.<ref name="SoaresRebelo2012">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref>

The word prototype derives from the Greek πρωτότυπον prototypon, "primitive form", neutral of πρωτότυπος prototypos, "original, primitive", from πρῶτος protos, "first" and τύπος typos, "impression".<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref><ref name=":0" />

Prototype sections
Intro  Basic prototype categories  Differences between a prototype and a production design  Characteristics and limitations of prototypes  Engineering sciences  Computer programming/computer science  Natural sciences   See also   References  

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