Locale

Ethan Lewis
Feb 27 · 6 min read

My inspiration for creating this app came from the increased number of 8.5x11 paper flyers that were being stapled to telephone poles in the area where I live. The signs had been for a variety of different things events such as yard sales, bar events, church events and many more.

There was an incident that took place in my neighbourhood where someone had been ripping down church advertisements all summer long. In retaliation, the church had started to put up additional signs to spread awareness that someone had been taking down their signs without the church's consent. But those signs were also ripped down by the anonymous Long Branch sign vandal. (True Story)

That had me thinking. What if there was a platform that would allow people to post their own event whenever they pleased. This would decrease the amount of litter associated with advertisements. People would be able to drop events at their own convenience. This would take the stress away from the user to gain attendance to their event.

The primary research that was conducted went into event platforms. The most similar platform that I found was called Meetup. Meetup allowed its users to be part of different groups within the app to allow them to do activities that they enjoy with others. The downside I saw about the app was that there was a lot of maintenance work for the user that decided they wanted to become the group leader. It would turn out to be a full-time job for the user to keep up with all of the communication and planning that was happening within their selected group. This was a good starting point to find inspiration. I knew that my app was for a different use and I had to reach out to find more platforms that were similar.

Eventbrite

A platform that allows users to post their own events, for the most part, the events found on this app are business events. A lot of conferences and other professional events are shared on this platform.

Facebook

This platform can be restricting to the growth of your events. Users have the ability to invite friends to their events. It’s a harder process to create a public event and get the circulation you want it to have.

Instagram

Instagram isn’t the most reliable platform for getting your event across unless you have a supportive following on the app already. Instagram gives you the option to promote your posts, but that would mean that you would have to turn your account into a business account, which many people aren't interested in doing.

BlogTO

This platform could potentially work for users to post events. The problem is that many people wouldn’t think to see a small event such as a yard sale on the event list. Many go on the site to see tourist specific events. Also, there is an amount of time that you have to post the event before the start time.

Kijiji

Kijiji is a buying and selling platform. It is really useful for finding used goods at a lower price. The aspect of the app that many users frown upon is the fact that there is a lot of back in forth to set up a meeting time and place. Many users also don’t enjoy the awkward meets that result in using the service.

Ticketmaster

Event platform used for big events that will many times has an audience of over 20,000.

One of the challenges I faced was brainstorming a name for the app that is friendly and welcoming. Initially, the app was called Ward. I was naming the app ward because the city of Toronto has 52 wards. I felt it was fitting to give the app this name because it was dedicated to the city of Toronto. Later, I came to the realization that the word Ward isn’t the most friendly. When many people think of the word, the image of a jail or the government may come to their mind. Those are two things that I didn’t want associated to the service.

A design challenge that I had for the app was ensuring that it would be appealing to older and younger generations. That is why I made the main colour of the app blue. The colour blue is related to technology and is acknowledged by all age groups. I’m using the colour blue to connect an older and younger generation together in communities.

The app initially didn’t include the map search aspect. After prototyping the app, I realized how much of an inconvenience it was when having to go back and forth from the app you’re on and google maps to see exactly where a location is in relevance to your own position.

In the initial design I had used too much blue for all of the imagery. I used a blue opacity strip and put it over all of the imagery. In the redesign, I dropped all of the blue overlays to give the app more personality.

I focused to make sure that the design is easily accessible for both a younger and older generation. The way I went about this is I made sure that are there no conflicting colours that were paired together. I made sure that the point size could be easily read while scrolling down the timeline or any of the pages within the app.

The font used for the logo is called Quicksand. I chose this font because it gives the Locale a friendly approach to the users when they see it.

All of the body copy within the app is Roboto. I chose this app for all of the content because it is a font that can be easily read by all users of the app.

The key features of the app:

Provides awareness for the events that are happening in your community

Users are able to post events no matter how small they may be. A yard sale is an appropriate event post and is encouraged to be posted.

Locale does all the work for the user if they decide that they want to promote their events on additional platforms. Locale will take away the hassle of having to create your own business accounts on social media platforms. If users pay for the premium, they will have the ability to promote their events on other platforms such as Instagram.

A quick event view with a build in map search function

Connecting different age demographics — this app is perfect for students that need furniture for their student house but don’t have the budget to buy new furniture.

Skip the awkward meetup stage — with the ticket feature, the event poster has acknowledged that you will be attending the event and does not need to message you or collect any info while waiting for you to arrive.

Ethan Lewis

Written by

My interest in design comes from my love for technology. The commonality between different tech devices is that they all have their own unique user experience.

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