User Research

Notes of what I observed on the 40 metro bus.

What and Why of the Designing Process

For my User Research project I had to go to a commuting location and I decided to go on the 40 metro bus on my way to Ballard/Fremont to work from Downtown Westlake and I had to observe and write down observations of what I saw during my 30 minute bus ride. I wrote down stuff people were doing in the bus while they were on it, getting off, or on the bus. I then chose 3 practices that I wanted to focus on and they were pulling the string, people on their laptop, and people browsing on the internet with their phones. I decided to focus on these 3 practices because I automatically thought of possible solutions for these practices. But the main one I wanted to go further about is pulling the string. The reason why is because it is a very important practice people do while commuting on the bus and I have seen people standing having a difficult time trying to pull the string because they are so far from the string and they sometimes have to reach over or ask somebody to pull it for them to stop the bus. A solution that I thought of was having a button on the poles where people hold onto while they are standing so it would be easier for them. Further research I would need to do for this solution is having a metro engineer figure out how to install the button and having a bus research jot down how many times a person struggles to pull the string like having to ask or leaning over.

My Experience

To start off with my experience is I had a difficult time seeing everything that was going on in the back because I was facing forward. It would be awkward if I kept facing back every time and sometimes I would just play it off casually when I looked back. Some questions that came to mind when I was doing this is if I was being bias towards anything that would affect my research and what are some things that I might have missed that I did not get in my jottings.

What do I Like about My Design?

What I liked about my design is that I actually got to go out and do something outside the classroom or my dorm to do this project. I also like that throughout my 30 minute bus ride I was observing and jotting down notes of what I saw instead of being on my phone on the whole ride. I got to think and do research as an engineering and it was really fun because you got to actually see people do every little small thing that I have never realized.

Applying it into the Future

How I can see people applying this to the future is if researchers want do further research on a specific thing that they want to improve on for the people. Some examples are wanting to improve lines at coffee shops here at the University of Washington or wanting to improve on car accidents in Seattle by doing User Research on what people are doing wrong and how they can fix the problem. How I can see myself applying this technique of research is if I were to major in Chemical Engineering I would want to see how people are using the products we make and how many people actually buy the product by checking the stores stock.

More notes I observed while riding on the 40 metro bus
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