Interface for dense city drivers
For the first studio assignment, we are required to design a smart vehicle interface to satisfy special groups of people.
We first come up with some kinds of special groups of people. For example, teenagers who just get their licenses for few days, people who need to find a parking lot as soon as possible. Then we discuss what they need most. For our group, the special group of people is drivers in mini buses in a dense city. We thought that the drivers need a censor to assess surroundings and analyze because it is a dense city. Imagining you are driving in a narrow street with a car facing you wants to drive in the street, kids running across the road, homeless cats jumping out suddenly from bush. Will drivers too tired to handle with so much information everyday?
Under such a situation, a detector helps drivers assess the surroundings and tells drivers which direction has obstacles so that drivers drive easier in a dense city.
Application of censor system in the future
The application of the censor system will be board in the future. Assessing surroundings and reflecting it to drivers by audio always helps save drivers’ time and energy. Actually, the self-driving system kind of uses the censor part. Instead, it reflects the data collected from surroundings to computer to calculate speed and routes. In our project, drivers play the role of computer, receiving information from surroundings and make decisions. However, there is one factor that has to be improved in order to apply it. The safety factor is always the most important issue. The censor has to be precise enough so that it will not miss anything, or it will cause lots of problems. Tesla self-driving, as mentioned above, caused an accident last may in Florida. Unfortunately, the driver died due to the miscalculation made by the system. (2) There is still lots of work to do to turn sensor system into wide use.
During the design, I found that the hardiest part is not coming up with ideas. It is how to break some traditional restrains and be creative. When talking about drivers in dense city, we all thought about parking sensor and navigation. However, we found that so far most smart cars seem to have these functions. One of our members proposed that we can combine these two functions together. The system reflects the obstacles the sensor detected on a navigation map. So that drivers have a better view of what surround the car. In the future studios, I want to learn more about the application part, which is how to turn thoughts into reality. I want to learn about those mistakes I made or details I did not consider during idealization.
About the project
This project is a highly efficient way for us to understand what is user centered design, what considerations are important during the process of idealization. I like the part when everyone paste their ideas on board most because I think it is always good to jump out of my mind to look at what others think. I did surprised by some creative answers and realized that there are so many aspects that I did not even think about. It also teaches me how important it is to observe the little daily details.