The First Time We Never Forget

After a intense week in the UXDI course at General Assembly, learning the basic techniques I was surprisingly able to create my first app prototype. This brand new and unfamiliar field to me, began to be exploited.

The idea

I was supposed to create a app in the field of Social Good and while I was thinking about what I could do, a Canadian friend who lives far from her family, posted in her Facebook that she needed to borrow a set of crutches and some help after a knee surgery she was about to do. That is it! I thought. I will do an database network app for this kind of help.

The first step: interviews

During my opening interviews I realized that I was not receiving the answers I expected, although they all had experience as volunteer. I rephrase some questions insisting in my previous idea, but the answers did not match my point again. Although they were all enthusiastic about volunteers programs. I found so many interesting personal experience, I could feel how they were engaged in their cause. It certainly made me change my direction, to broaden the scope of the project and motivated me to do a good app on volunteering.

sketching

I build my app step by step, trying to do something simple, clear and intuitive.

A clear front page with a logo and three input options: Registration, to new user; Sign in, to users; and sign in with…., probably Facebook (where the idea arise). In the registration page, two options: Users or Institutions. Once registered, the user can find all type of volunteer program registered and make their choses. Or, as a Institution, the user can search what kind of volunteer they are looking for.

Once the user, or the Institution had made their primer choices about the programs, or the type of volunteer, a number of selected Institutions/volunteer close to the registered address, are shown on this next page. Now, the user can select the best option among the previous list and the personal detailed page of the volunteer or the Institution shows up. After clic in “Request for Help” button, the user send a message to the select volunteer/Institution, applying or asking for help. I also made the logo as o Home button.

Prototyping and Testing

We were introduced to Marvel, this amusing prototype app that made everything easer for me and all the fellows in class. So, with all my sketch aligned and linked, I could test my Volunteer App navigability with some classmates (https://marvelapp.com/gej4c6). The answers soon appeared.

The Feedbacks were extremely constructive and supported by significant topics. The good news is that my App appeal to all users, they all said that the Volunteer App was very simple and easy to use and they certainly would like to have it in their phone. On the other hand, the “Write a message page” could be different, with some previous subjects to be selected such as the time available, skills and any other specific necessary detail to the volunteering.

Five intense minutes

On Friday, each of my colleges experience the most 5 intense minutes of the entire week: the presentation. There were similar volunteer projects with some better solutions than mine, specifically in that problem page I have already displayed. But at the end, I was proud to be able to present my App.

As a foreign language student, I focused on a more visual presentation to make up for my difficulty in expressing myself in English. It was not so bad at all, but next time, I will be better for sure. Every single day was a huge learning opportunity, and there is no better way to lear than making our own mistakes.

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