HCDE Sprint 1: UCD Charrete

By Ziyue Li

4/4/17

what did we do?

This week, we first got to know the idea of charrette and started to design smart vehicle interfaces for specific groups of people. To get this design done, We went through three important steps. First, we discussed the possible groups of users, their needs, scenarios and interaction flow. Second, we presented what we designed. Third, we looked back the process and what we could learn from it.

Figure 1: I was discussing with partners about the possible scenarios

During the brainstorming process, we first picked the user type, which are people who are anxious about driving because of some unexpected condition. Then, we dug more deeply about their needs, such as initiating auto-driving function, finding the nearest safe place, alerting other drivers. According to the user type and needs, we created a scenario, a person who gets a heart attack while driving and needs to go the nearest hospital. After that, since we know the users’ needs and scenario are, we organize the information together and design the interaction flow and interface screen, which are pressing the emergency button, locating the hospital, starting auto-driving and alerting other drivers.

what problems did we encounter?

The process of accurately defining the users’ needs is most challenging for me. I think users’ needs are the input and the base for the whole designing process. During the discussion, I noticed that I tended to come up with something on the surface level. In this case, at first, I only had the idea that users need to arrive at a safe place. However, this is not enough to get to the next step. I need to extend the broader concept and be able to tell the reasons and ideas behind, like initiating auto-driving function, finding the nearest hospital, alerting other drivers in the road, which is what I am trying to improve in the future.

Figure 2: I was reflecting the whole process in the studio and writing down that the difficult part is getting more ideas

applying in the future

The whole process of charrette which involves a lot brainstorming and discussion can really be applied to any fields requiring creativity, such as marketing, research conducting and film industries etc. Especially in the human-centered design engineering, as the name it claims, everything designed is for human which is for users to get good experience. From my perspective, The process of the charrette is necessary to every project. Even if we have to work alone in some projects, we have to go through those steps in mind to ensure we consider these aspects of the products. To make the product more user-friendly, it is important to know and think of any possible needs, scenarios, and solutions no matter how unrealistic they seem.

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