Find a screen-based solution to a mobility problem in El Segundo.
Uncertainty about routes is a barrier for bike commutes
Redesigned the interface of Google Maps to create a customizable bike route that shows a live preview of the route and allows for user preferences such as avoiding traffic and hills. My team created intuitive solutions that the users easily understand, and increased confidence in casual bikers, encouraging them to explore.
Di Xu - User Research
Ross Meredith - Graphic Design
Porfirio Ortega - User Interface Design
The final submission to show the concept is a video.
Research using field observations and looking at existing documents helps us understand what problems exist that need to be solved.
Our team interviewed 5 pedestrians around El Segundo to gather pain points in order to pin point the research question.
Based on observations and secondary research, this design question becomes evident. In order to solve the mobility problem of unsafe commuting streets, we need to ask ourselves as designers:
based on interviews at DTLA.
Based on interviews in El Segundo.
Bike routing frequently relies on strong legs and confident attitudes, creating pre-trip anxiety with unexperienced and casual riders.
An affinity diagram groups ideas and facts into related clusters. It helps my team focus in on a specific problem.
Brainstorming sessions helped my team come up with concepts and ideas before synthesizing.
Creating a storyboard to represent the users’ whole journey using our app helps us focus on the need of the user, and design the interactions to tackle the needs at the right time.
During this process we also came up with initial ideas for prototypes.
Designing the architecture of a stand-alone app. We further developed this app concept in parallel with alternative flows.
With the UI design and Graphic Design team, we created several concepts to test with users. Each user tested all three concepts, and attempted to complete tasks within a scenario:
After selecting the concept, I worked with the UI desinger to iterate, but we are not certain about two features: 1) appearance of the bike rack indicators 2) interation of the route preferences. The UI designer created several options that I can test, as well as a working prototype.
Reason for choosing B: Rack icon is distinguished more from the location indicator of the bike icon.
Reason for choosing C: integrating the preference into the card does not require extra click to find it.
Photos of testing sessions with El Segundo residents.
We presented the final prototype in class, and received feedback on stickie notes. Our peers enjoyed the presentation of the video, and the use of quotes to help the audience empathize with the people we are designing for.
Some questions arise about how accessible the Google Maps app is currently for older adults, and if this features is implemented, if it would actually make an impact, or address safety concerns.
Older adult cyclists used digital navigational tools more frequently than expected, and also reported problems such as bike-rack-finding that our team did not predict. This shows the importance of testing our assumptions and interviewing.
We also found the importance of ethnographic research techniques. Users that we interviewed were more open and relaxed in their own home than out around town. Many artifacts in homes also deliver invaluable insights. If we had more funding and time, we would conduct more ethnographic studies to have a deeper understanding of the people we design for.
In this project, our team went back and forth with many concepts during ideation and protoyping. This can seem messy but our successful outcome demonstrates the power of a well-designed creative process, centered around user-centric testing performed with an open mind.