Contest: Design for a better world

Doing UX without even knowing it

Summary

Date:
May 2015

Goal:
Submit a proposal for any design area aimed at making the world a better place

Overview

Finding an idea
Description
Proposal handed in for the contest
Clip
Takeaways

Finding an idea

I brainstormed ideas that could actually make this a better world and had things like urban gardens, bike parkings, and more in mind.

But for months on my every day walk to the bus station, I had been passing this lottery selling stand operated by visually impaired persons: 1x1 square meter, all glass with manual shades and not much more to it.
Every day I asked myself the same questions: how must they feel sitting-standing in there all day? what is it like? why isn’t there a different design for this? the people working in them might not be able to see — but the rest of their sensorial perceptions work (even better than ours)…and I could not imagine myself in there for more than 1 hour straight.

This is why I decided to propose a redesign of those lottery selling stands.

I had no idea of any sort of design process, had no professional design tools, didn’t have a lot of experience on making visually nice presentations, had to figure out how to compose a clip from several existing ones…and the result, visually speaking was really “cutre” as we say in Spain. You don’t need a translation for that, just have a look below and you’ll know what I mean…

What I did do however was go out and talk to current users of the huts, ask them how many hours they spent in there, how it felt in summer and in winter, did they have air conditioning or a heater, where and how did they eat, … I asked to take pictures from the inside (and was surprised they agreed — after all, they could not know if my intentions were honest…).

Looking back with what I know now, I was doing user research and designing a user experience, very basic and not knowing what I was doing but just following my intuition of what I needed to do in order to get a well-founded proposal.

Description

ONCE upon a time, there was a bold man who would spread magic and joy around Christmas time!

The present project intents to illustrate that this magic and joy could endure throughout the year.

How?
By a new design of lotto selling huts.

What’s the story?
The bold man makes his traditional blow and sends the lottery balls out into the world.
They start their journey and make their way into Spanish cities, where they come down as magic lotto selling huts.

What’s new?
The lotto selling huts
👉 imitate the organic form of the lottery balls
👉 are bigger and thus more comfortable for the users
👉 look nice and enchanting from the outside
👉 are energetically self-sufficient.

Better world?
They contribute to making ours a better world by
👉 improving working conditions providing more interior space and freedom to move as well as a comfortable chair, including resting positions

👉 brightening up the cityscape with its innovative organic form and colorful imprint

👉 being friendly to the environment thanks to the solar cells’ energy, which is used to heat and cool the interior, as well as intelligent glass windows, that reduce the need of electric cooling devices like air conditioning, and energy storing devices integrated under the roof

The proposed design is partly based on interviews with a few users of lotto selling huts in order to find out which needs are currently not being met:

Roser (visually impaired), Carrer Aribau
• she spends 8–9 hours/day in her hut
• a bit more space would be nice
• the stool is too high and there’s no support for her feet (she uses a waste bin she brought herself and uses it also to rest her feet)
• the 4 wheels are in the way when standing up
• the seat squab is too wide
• there is air conditioning built in
• there is space for a portable electric heater

Antonio (full eyesight), Carrer Muntaner:
• would appreciate a nicer window opening without bars, understands however its protection purpose for blind workers

presentation slides

Takeaways

Never in my life had I participated in a contest, let alone a creative one.

My technical resources were very limited, tendency zero.

I do not like the visual result of my proposal.

I do like that I overcame my fears of failure, of not having good enough ideas, and that I put myself out of my comfort zone. Very much out!

I had used pages a few times and iMovie never. I had to find out how to download youtube videos, edit them, add one overlapping sound. I tried to sketch on my iPad hoping to convey my concept.

In the end, I am happy and proud and thankful that I decided to take this step as with this proposal I received a special grant (the official grant was not allocated at all; however, the jury like my concept enough to create a special grant for it 🥳)…which helped me to enroll in the Global Design Master at IED, graduate with a project I am proud of also from the visual point of view, gave me the opportunity to work in a graphic design studio…and ultimately has led me to discover my passion for UX Design!

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