UX and Design of a next generation medical app
Interaction Design Capstone Project
It was almost a year ago that I started on the journey to learn interaction design and how user experience forms an essential component throughout the process. I am glad to say that I have come a long way since and created some interesting projects using concepts like HCI, Ideation, Social Computing, Prototyping and Responsive design.
For my capstone project I decided to take on the design brief of time. How do people feel about visiting doctors, what do they like, what do they not like, what do they wish they had. These are all several questions I wanted answers for when I started interviewing people. Needfinding as I understand is the most important step before starting any project, because, what is the point of creating some unique solution that no one needs or cares about, yeah?
Based on the interview feedback , Ideation (or simply put idea creation) followed next. Generating ideas with quantity and quality involved a lot of creativity and can be a fun ‘right-brain’ crunching exercise if done right.
Storyboarding and Prototyping
I created a couple of storyboards based on the ideas yielded from Ideation phase. How best can technology (and in turn my app) help the patients and their time related problems. In my opinion, in an ideal world having an application that is used by most doctors and their patients to ensure a smooth visit will eventually benefit both sides, and will take some pain out of a sometimes uncomfortable (pun intended) but unavoidable process. Also I felt that this area is something that can benefit a lot from new age technologies like IOT and wearables. My application will ultimately coordinate with hardware scanners/kiosks at the doctor’s offices that will interact with your phone and help everyone with the not only the administrative procedures but maybe more. But considering the time and purpose of this capstone project I decided to come up with a feasible design that covered the basic features that such an app might have.
Paper prototypes are an easy and non-intimidating way to get all the stakeholders to participate in your design process. In my project I came up with few paper prototype pages and reviewed with a couple of friends who were new to my app, which I will officially call the ‘Dr.Time’ app henceforth :) . I video-recorded the whole process as well. Later I categorized my issues found based on Jakob Nielsen’s 10 design heuristics for UX design.
Moral : User testing is invaluable in all stages of design and development and gives a very high return of investment.
Finalizing the Digital Prototype
Next, for the design phase, I began putting together the initial wireframes and finalizing the digital prototypes. Being comfortable with the Adobe Creative Suite, I used Photoshop to design my screens and Invision to map the digital prototype. I kept circulating my designs at every stage for user testing and also got more feedback from running an A/B testing from usertesting.com.
Here’s the link to the final invision prototype: https://invis.io/6A969FY4S .
Even though it was challenging to put together a complete working prototype within a 2-week period which involved constant testing and updates, I came out learning that the next project can only be faster and more efficient with all the things I have learnt so far. Looking back, as I was designing I kept questioning myself on how such an app could hold secure information and how the medical database from the providers could sync real time to this app. I will need to put on my engineering hat to solve that. I still have a few nice-to-have features and polishes that I will be adding to this design. Lastly, I want to thank my friends, fellow students in the UCSD Interaction Design Course and my family for putting up with me constantly pestering them to test and critic my application. As a beginner in the field of UX and Interaction Design I welcome the same from all the readers, since I will really be glad to make this app go live someday!