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I’ll be the first to admit it’s a shame I didn’t start writing regular blog posts about project Notusia from the beginning. That being said, going forward it makes sense that what I write is current and relevant to the ongoing work that is happening with Notusia instead of a constant backlog of things that were done weeks if not months ago.

However, there is a certain amount of contextual background that’s inherently necessary to understanding what I’m doing now, and so I shall endeavor to give a brief overview of where I’ve been leading up to this point.

Embodied and Spatial Cognition

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Process shot from building a simple paper prototype to test the concept of 3D Information Architecture

I started actively working on my senior thesis project, Notusia, almost five months ago in September 2018. But it was actually a few months prior when I got my inspiration for the project. I was in the middle of an incredible internship experience at IDEO and was inspired by the unmistakably tangible style of project collaboration that seemed to imbue the office and its people. Tangentially, I had the opportunity to participate in a live demo of a product by an augmented reality startup called Spatial. I was blown away — my childhood sci-fi fantasies were fast becoming reality. …

Even Designers Care About Sports

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Argentina v. Nigeria playing in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Series

Having been at IDEO for almost a month now, I’ve learned a lot of things about a lot of people. By now I feel like I’ve gotten IDEOers more or less figured out in my mind: a bunch of Designers and Techies who like to nerd out on systems maps, font pairings, and user research among other things. So it was by complete surprise that one afternoon I came across an entire group of IDEOers standing in front of one of the office monitors tensely watching, wait….no way….could it really be??….a SPORTS GAME!!!

That’s right. The World Cup. Even designers are sports fans and are prone to getting all riled up when X Team wins or Y Team misses a goal. I’ll admit, I was slightly fascinated myself (I’ve never really watched soccer) and would, from time to time, insert myself into the ogling crowd and ask the person standing next to me just what the heck was happening on the screen. Now I know why goalies have different uniforms from the rest of the team and wear gloves! …

Time flies when you’re having fun, and I’ll be the first to say that these first three weeks at IDEO have flown by remarkably fast. It seems like just yesterday that I was walking into the office for the first time, and yet in a blink of an eye, my internship is already 1/4 of the way over. I still can’t get over how much IDEO feels like home, despite having been here for such a short time. It’s almost paradoxical to be in a new place that feels so familiar.

As I’ve spent more time in the office and gotten to know more and more people, I’ve learned a few tips and tricks—some shared, some discovered. …

Having concluded my second week interning at IDEO, here are a few things I learned. Maybe they’ll prove useful to someone besides me. Maybe not.

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Photo by Cyril Saulnier on Unsplash

Go Easy on the Coffee (seriously)

As I mentioned previously, one of the best and most recommended things for an intern to do (at IDEO or otherwise) is to get coffee with people. But, that doesn’t mean you literally have to go get coffee with them. In fact, I don’t think I’ve actually drank coffee on a single one of my “coffee dates” so far. Most of the time we don’t even leave the office—we just grab a spot to sit and talk. Which is good! …

As of three days ago, I officially completed my first week working as an Interaction Design Intern at IDEO, and I’ve already learned so much! I took the first week (albeit a short week due to Memorial Day) and challenged myself to do a daily reflection and blog post, looking back on each individual day’s experiences and thinking about what I learned from them. While I will continue to reflect and post throughout the rest of my time as an intern at IDEO, from now on I’ve decided to post on a weekly basis as opposed to writing every single day—because I mean, let’s be honest, who here would actually read 90+ articles about my internship? Okay fine, Dad….but …

It’s Important to Remember to Take Breaks

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Photo by Jessi Pena on Unsplash

There’s always so much going on inside IDEO and the space is so nice and cozy (sorry no photos allowed, so you’ll just have to take my word for it) that it’s quite easy to get swept up in all the excitement. I can say without a shadow of a doubt that I have never felt more at home in a place which is not technically my home. The office itself is pretty fluid with people moving about, hopping between teams, and changing up their workspaces as they work on different projects, although most of us do have a more-or-less designated desk where we can sit and work. …

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Appreciate The Simple Things

This is actually completely non-IDEO-related, but I took a different route on my bike ride to the office today and discovered a wonderful tree-lined path. It was just really nice to find a small pocket of nature that I can include as part of my commute now. And yes, I can ride my bike with no handlebars :)

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions

I feel like this is kind of a no-brainer, but often times when you’re in a new and unfamiliar place, surrounded by new and unfamiliar people, it can be intimidating to speak up and ask questions you might think are silly or stupid. …

For those of you who don’t already know me:

Hi—I’m Bibi!


I’m an Interaction Designer currently studying at California College of the Arts (CCA) in San Francisco and this summer I’ve been given the long sought-after opportunity of interning at IDEO (also in San Francisco). I can write more later about how I even managed to get an internship at IDEO in the first place, if anyone’s interested.

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What a jam-packed 15 weeks this has been!

I worked at a startup over the summer and as I got to know the co-founders and all of the other wonderful employees, I saw just how much passion and hard work they put into the company they had built and were now striving to grow. But in reality, I had no idea... Founding is startup is f****** hard.

Hearing from past students who had taken Christina Wodtke’s Creative Founder class, they told me it was going to be hard, but that it was also going to be incredibly rewarding and I would be a different and better person by the end of it. They were right. …


Bibiana Bauer

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