Updates from March, 2009 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Yury Gitman 2:53 pm on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    User Testing 

    For my user tests, I surveyed 7 individuals with somewhat consistent questions which evolved slightly as I received more feedback and my idea began to transform. Here is the functional diagram which I presented to my users as a visual while explaining my concepts:


    After presenting and explaining the concepts, I asked the following questions:

    Which of these concepts appeals to you the most?
    Can you see yourself using any of these items in your everyday life?
    Please expand upon the item you think appeals the most to you. Why does this appeal to you? What uses do you think you could find for this prototype outside of the intended uses presented?
    Which direction would you rather the concept be pushed in: Purely decorative or more functional?

    I then had about a 5-10 minute expanded conversation about the concepts with each individual, noting their ideas/advice/reactions and asking follow up questions to expand upon their comments.

    This is an overall summary of the reactions that I received:

    Prototype 1 (Clock):

    Most users thought that this concept was interesting in a decorative manner, but did not seem very enthused or excited about it. There was an overall feeling that in order for this concept to work, the lights had to have a  much more organic/soft/slow feel, or it would soon become distracting and annoying. While this item does technically have a function (counting to 30), most users couldn't think of any situation in which they'd use this. I think that this functionality could be incorporated as an alternate mode, however I'm not too excited about it and I think that I will probably leave it out of the final prototype. I think that a more organic and random pattern would be more interesting if I'm going to include a passive decorative display.

    Prototype 2 (Braille):

    This concept showed the strongest amount of interest from users, however I quickly realized that the way I had currently imagined it being implemented was not realizing the full potential and possibilities of the device. After taking several combined comments into consideration, I realized that I could show passage of time as a representation of the rhythm of communication. A seemingly random pattern of dots, changing with the PWM glow of the outer ring, could actually be conveying a message to those able to read the braille language. This message would eventually be programmable via USB/serial interface and a GUI application, allowing the user to use the device as a light-based communication protocol.

    Prototype 3 (NightLight):

    User response to this concept was generally favorable and interested. Users did not seem to react to this as being enough of a concept on its own, however they reacted very favorably to this functionality as a secondary/extra mode of the device. I think that I will incorporate this mode if I have space for it as far as PWM pins go, but if it hinders my ability to create a really solid version of prototype 2 I will leave it out.

    User Scenarios

    Here are some use scenarios for my Visual Braille Communication Device

    User 1-Geraldo

    Geraldo is a 10 year old boy who is interested in secret messages, encrption, and communication. He loves to learn new ways to encode and transmit messages, imagining himself as a war-time spy passing sensitive information to other spies behind enemy lines. Geraldo is interested in the VBCD because it allows him to learn a language that is easily decrypted by someone who is trained and completely meaningless to the vast majority of individuals who are not. He sees value in the fact that the vast majority of individuals who can read Braille can not interpret the device, making the device an extremely interesting and secure way for him to transmit his messages. Geraldo recruits his friend across the street, Bill, who is also interested in secret messages, and together they spend the summer perfecting their ability to read and decode each others messages, spending late nights talking to each other while their parents are fast asleep.

    User 2-Montell

    Montell is a 25 year old IT professional who lives in Manhattan. He has recently moved into a new apartment and needs something decorative for his walls. He is very much into technology and appreciates all things digital, and wants something that will look decorative but also allow him to modify it programmatically. The VBCD appeals to him as a wall mounted device because of its simple/elegant look (this version is made of wood), its high-tech functionality, and its night-light functionality which allows him to avoid bumping his legs on his furniture when he wakes up late at night to get a drink or go to the bathroom. He also finds the soothing nightlight patterns gently put him to sleep and help clear his mind from his day's work.

    User 3-Ricky

    Ricky is a 40 year old middle school teacher who is looking for a creative way to teach her class about alternate forms of language and disabilities. As a classroom exercise, she uses the VBCD with her students to explain to them how the Braille language works, and then she breaks them into groups and has them create their own Braille messages on devices. The students then stand across the classroom and take turns trying to read each other's messages, and doing so gain the experience of understanding the overall way in which blind people communicate.

  • Yury Gitman 2:50 pm on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    Prototyping, User Feedback, & Target User Descriptions 


    Physical Prototype (right): This prototype demonstrates the sequence of tides – going from low to high tide. Using PWMs the LEDs fade on slowly for "low tide," somewhat faster for "mid-tide," and very quickly three times for "high tide."

    Illustrated "Final" Prototype (below): Construction includes plexi glass, fabric / paper and LEDs.


    Target User Descriptions:
    User 1: Terry, a thirty-one year old elementary school teacher, has been teaching second grade for the past seven years. She has eclectic tastes and likes her classroom décor to fit in with her personality. Her favorite subjects to teach are art and science. She came across the Sea Lite in a small boutique while visiting New York City. Because the Sea Lite touches on science – sea life and tidal changes – and has a unique aesthetic, it’s a must have for Terry.

    User 2: Timmy, a five-year-old inquisitive youngster, loves to play outdoors and ask questions of his parents. Timmy loves fire-trucks and the ocean. For his birthday, his grandparents decided to splurge on an interesting light for Timmy’s room – the Sea Lite. Timmy loves to turn the knob and imagine he is underwater dancing with the fish, while watch the lights dance about his head.

    User 3: Claire is a first year biology major at UC Santa Cruz. Her love of nature has always been a central part of her life. While visiting a small boutique with friends in San Francisco, she came across the Sea Lite. Claire is slightly homesick for her friends and family back home in San Luis Obispo. In an attempt to make her dorm room more “homey” she decided to splurge on the Sea Lite because it reminds her of visiting the beach with her dad.

    User Feedback:

    -    The shape of the Sea Lite in the drawings add a lot to the overall aesthetic of the light.
    -    Users liked the slower, tranquil fading of the LEDs – not the “high tide” blinking of the LEDs – they are somewhat obnoxious.
    -    The strings / dangling fabric from the Sea Light don’t add a lot to the over construct of the light. The shape of the Sea Light is far more interesting and the strings could end up being somewhat distracting.
    -    The paper was a nice way to defuse the lights – fabric may fade the light too much.
    -    It might be a good idea to have one constant LED always on (maybe a white one?)
    -    This an interesting idea but it would be much better if the physical Sea Lite was more of a chandelier – not portable, like something found at Spencer’s Gifts
    -    The physical Sea Light should be done in glass or plexi glass

  • Yury Gitman 2:37 pm on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    ::User Testing:: 


    Sara is 28 and wants to have a light fixture that in some way hand made and that has a Victorian or Rococo sensibility  but yet it looks simple and modern. She is drawn to the modular nature of the fixture since she could buy many to make for a large stalactite formation either in the ceiling or the wall. She is also drawn to the amber and white soft light that the fixture emits given it an organic feel to it. Sara usually has the light fixture on while dinner parties instead of candles and at night when she is reading a book as a secondary light to provide a warm glow.The light fixture is activated by sound.

    Rebbecca is 34 and she is also drawn to the same characteristics of the look and feel of the light fixture and its modularity that provides the ability to create your own arrangements of the units to make it look unique. However, she wishes the lights inside the light fixture were brighter since she would like to use the light fixture as a main source of light in the living room. She would like the fixture to have two modes: a dim, warm glow and a brighter one to illuminate the whole room. Since both think the light fixture has a sensor and that it they do not have to worry about turn it on or off.

    Show your prototypes (Look&Feel, and etc…) and user scenarios
    to others (preferably your ideal users) and get user feedback. Do 4-5
    hours of this user-testing and user-feedback.  Record and blog the

    User testing: Eric 27, Reba 28, Bret 30

    Most of the users agree that it would be great for the fixture to have two modes to make it more versatile. 

    Also most users agree in having two ways in which the light can be turn on. Having the light be turn on by

    sound or motion only even though it reduces energy consumption it takes away the freedom from the user to have it on or off when they want to.

    They all agree that make it modular with allow users to create their own armaments of the basic unit according to the space and kind of surface where they would place it

    They also suggested that the units should be easy to attach to others to promote building with modularity.

      Tres copy

  • Yury Gitman 12:15 pm on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    User Testing Feedback 

    The Cocoon Light:




    • When suspended upright, this object looks like grapes or a grape smuggler
    • It is reminiscent of a ball sack, maybe a ball sack in a speedo
    • The stitching is bothersome
    • The variation in the size of the objects inside is pleasing – perhaps explore use of a greater variety of sizes of balls and capsules
    • Would you really use this? It might be construed as a design object for ambient lighting, perhaps something that might be at a design store but otherwise doesn't have a very specific use.
    • It might look a bit tacky for an adult to have displayed if it became clear that the insides were ping-pong balls; you would have to use better materials
    • I like that the light would change when you move the balls around, and that it would change the effect created
    • This object invites touch. It is sensuous and borderline pornographic


    The Owl Nightlight:



    • It's cute and squishy and huggable
    • It's not as cool as the lumpy cocoon
    • Will it be safe with all of the electronics inside?
    • It should be portable and battery powered so kids can carry it around
    • Reminds me of an ewok toy I had as a child that played different noises
    • It reminds me of Ugly Dolls but more interactive
    • The LEDs in the eyes are a nice touch, since owls can see at night
    • It should be able to rotate its head 360 degrees really fast and blink its lights
    • Maybe it could be a standing doll and make owl sounds


    The Daylight Projector:



    • It's an interesting concept
    • It would be difficult to get all the kern, the trapezium correctly calibrated so it would project straight onto the wall without obstructing space in the middle of the room
    • This screams SkyMall
    • It would require a serious light source to project sufficiently

  • Yury Gitman 12:09 pm on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    User Testing Prototypes 

    For this user testing I questioned 8 MFADT students. I showed them two ideas about displaying the passage of time. I then explained each prototype and its functionality. I described the context of each prototype and asked which one they would prefer.

    PROTOTYPE 1 – Table Center Piece
    Basically, I explained this prototype similar to a center piece for a table top and placing items on the outer pods would alter the light animation that played throughout the smaller pods. For the most part, people liked the idea that this prototype of a function and was "useful." They further explained that this was because the user could place items, in which most people said could be glasses, on the outer pods and the center piece could be a holder of some sort, like a buffet tray.

    However, one person imagined the prototype to be of a very large scale in which stepping on the different pods could activate the sequences.

    Another person also described the prototype in this large scale format and talked of a large playground toy for kids, in which each outer pod could serve as a place for a child. The children could sit on these pads and spin around the larger center circle.

    People also enjoyed the social aspects of this prototype in which people could use it as a tray for food at a table, or a center piece at a restaurant. One person mentioned giving this prototype a clock functionality when nothing was on any of the pods.

    PROTOTYPE 2 – Memory Animation
    I then proceeded to explain my second prototype verbally and utilized my sketches to further explain my concepts. I asked for feedback on this prototype and most liked the idea of memorable patterns that could be programmed by the user and would play back sequentially.

    Some suggested that the animation change or cease after a certain period of time to help keep it unique. Almost everyone asked if it was possible to use more buttons.

    One person spoke of creating hidden sequences in which the user must press the correct sequence of buttons to reveal the patterns. Another talked of it like an animation tool. Someone suggested that pulsing the lights shows the "passing" of time better, as opposed to on/off, which would be more like a "change of state." They also referred to it as capturing time, in the sense that it showed what you were doing at some point in time, and referenced a memory in an abstract way.

    Preference Center Piece – 5, Memory – 3
    I then asked which prototype was more interesting to them and which they were drawn to. Five people said the first "center piece" prototype, while the other 3 were more interested in the second "animation" prototype. Everyone who enjoyed the center piece prototype liked the physical, practical and social aspects. They felt that the animation piece was something to do by yourself and they would not sit there and play with it. The people who chose the animation prototype were drawn to the fact that you could program the piece and that it would capture this moment in time.

    I then showed them my previous prototype to show them the kind of diffusion I had in mind for either of the two prototypes. Everyone enjoyed the diffused light, especially the white. However, several people disliked the red light because it gave off the "warning" or "stop" vibe and thought it may be too strong.

    Layout Preference
    Regardless of which prototype they chose, I showed them the following layouts and asked them which design they liked the most. This was just a test to see which shapes and patterns the user was drawn to, for application to either prototype.


    I had each person pick one from each row that appealed to them the most, and their favorite of the three that they picked. The results were staggered, as two people chose 2c, and the other six people chose 1b, 1a, 3d, 3a, 1c, and 1d.

  • Yury Gitman 12:06 pm on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    Target User Descriptions 

    Student – Anna is a 18 year old undergraduate student at Ohio State University. She lives in the dorms and pursues objects that are small, compact and interesting to add some character to her room. She reads blogs normally, so she is aware of the latest trends. She has a HD lcd tv and she is looking for something to place on the wall directly above it. She does not have much room, but she wants something interesting that her friends can play with when they come over.

    Tech Geek – Rob is a 37 year old technology guru, he enjoys the
    latest gadgets and technology. He prefers a usb or laser pen, as
    opposed to a standard writing tool. He enjoys explaining his latest
    tech purchases to his friends and his knowledge of how to use the
    product. Upon a recent purchase he explores the product and tries to
    understand how it works, reading the manual and doing research online.
    While the product is still new he promotes the product to friends and
    family, but quickly loses his interest as the novelty wears off. Rob
    would use the programmable prototype by coding his own messages and
    having his friends decode them when they come over.

  • Yury Gitman 11:12 am on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    Myriam – users testing 


    I tested my prototype of "The dying arrow" with people I would want to buy my design : Collin, a 21 years old photographer, and Athena, a 23 years old marketing junior manager at Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry. Both love, buy and make art or design.

    They liked the aspect of the arrow and its concept, but had some changes they would do:
    – use real mirrors
    –  Collin would use a different color than red for the Leds (red is obvious for an arrow sign we see everywhere). Pick one unexpected color that would even add more meaning to the sign, and gender neutral (not blue and pick, can be seen as feminism…). And maybe have more than one color.
    – Athena won't put a color too aggressive. Just white Leds.
    – use plexiglas instead of wood
    – Colllin asked why have a frame, and not have the arrow as the design?Arrow
    – make it bigger, almost human size
    – have much more Leds
    – the sign makes him think about old neon signs reinvented here. 
    – Athena likes the arrow to be inside of a frame, as a painting, and says she might get bored of the arrow alone.
    about the animations:
    – would like several different animations
    – would like one mode where it is not animated, but all the leds are on.
    – said animations could be annoying after. It depends the context where you are, but if you're alone with the design in your home, it is really disturbing to have something always moving.
    – have the animation of Led blinking faster.
    – would like one animation of light sweeping back and forth on the arrow, to have more movement.
    Athena asked:
    – why don't you make a different shape than the arrow?
    She'd like to have a potentiometer to regulate the light brightness.
    She would like white Leds with a warm color for the plexiglas (brown, orange) to contrast with the light.
    She would like to have it home, and would put it in her corridor or bathroom.

    Collin would like to have it home if there is a still mode, he was really annoyed by the lights always moving. He'd hang it on his room's wall, or just put it against the wall in his living room. 


    1. Adrian, 25, architect.
    Adrian is at the beginning of a promising career. He just moved to New York to work in his dreamed architect agency, and lives in a nice studio loft in soho. He enjoys art, has many friends in the design field, and likes taking photographs. In fact, all the decorations in his apartment are photographs of different sizes, mostly black and white. He decorated his place to be simple and modern, with enough space to work in.
    In this clean atmosphere, he likes the big arrow he put in a corner against the wall of his living room. Next to the window, the arrow lighted brings life to his loft, a certain pace that makes the charm of it. He changes the arrow's mode depending on the people that are in his place, setting a different rythm, a mood to the crowd that's here. He enjoys the effect it has, and how it easily lives and dialogue with the photographs on his walls.
    2. Suzy, 21, art history student.
    Suzy is quite a sentimental girl. She lives with her roommate in a nice two bedroom in chelsea, and always has new stories to tell. She has an animated love life, and is always out or inviting friends home. Her and her roommate have chosen nice cheap furniture they discovered in thrifts shop. They enjoy shopping, changing. They can't live in routine.
    They have the arrow they put all over the house, they carry it around. When Suzy is sad, she puts the arrow facing down and dying, When she's happy, she likes to have it up or facing a direction, animated while she's dancing alone on some music.
    The arrow is a set of mind, and she sometimes uses it to communicate her mood to others.
    3. Emma, 30, freelance graphic designer.
    Emma lives in the West Village, in a big duplex with 6 roommates. She enjoys being a freelancer, because she's never doing the same thing, and always meeting new people. She would have killed herself if she had to work in an office, staring at the same old faces the hole day. She is happy to live with so many roommates, because everyday is different. Emma loves New York, because people move in and out, and they leave their furniture in the streets. Sometimes, she finds a beautiful piece and takes it back home to renovate it. She changes the color, adds new accessories, she transforms the furniture her own way. 
    She loves her arrow because it reminds her of old neon signs, but it's new. She likes playing with the different animations on it. She placed the arrow in the entrance of the apartment, and it is turned towards the living room, inviting people to come in. The entrance is dark, so having the arrow gives life to the room, and describes the atmosphere of the happy roommate she is in. It shows to people coming in a special space they're entering, that is full of surprises.

  • Yury Gitman 11:02 am on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    User testing and scenarios 


    Lawrence is a 23 year old gamer/game tester and hacker who lives in a
    basement apartment. Most of his time is spent in this dimly lit space
    play testing first person shooter games. He's also part of a guild on
    EverQuest and the guild has a specific time when they perform raids. Lawrence uses the artifact to tell him what time of day it is on the outside and also sets reminders for when he needs to join the EQ server. He loves waking up to the light in the morning and the soft glow helps him sleep at night.

    Elise is a 18 old student engaged in tons of social activity. She throws house parties ever so often and always has friends over lounging about. She uses her mood light to augment/enhance these social situations, she especially loves to have it be a disco light at parties.

    Clayton is a 27 year old who owns a bar in Willamsburg. He has numerous mood lights installed all over the bar to create an nice ambient atmosphere. He likes that the lights can help change the mood from lounge to p-a-r-t-y lights to just plain old ambient lighting.

    User Testing/ Interviews

    Number of users: 9
    Age group: 23-30
    Gender: Male and Female

    9 users were presented with the role, look and feel and implementation for all 3 concepts. They were asked for feedback in all 3 areas and asked open ended questions about what they think about the product. The 2nd concept (coaster) was the most popular of the 3. Here's a chart that shows the users preferences.


      Concept 1: Ambient Light Concept 2: Coaster Concept 3: Mood Light
    User 1
    • Interesting look and feel.
    • Works for target audience
    • Not really realted to time
    • Light variation based on weight of the cup/glass
    • Condensation from the drink has an effect on the colors
    • Flexible, scalable concept
    • Don't like
    User 2
    • Works well for target audience
    • Aesthically pleasing
    • Tells the bartender when drink is low
    • A lot more potential to expand upon
    • Could be in the form of a keychain
    • Could react to sound
    User 3
    • One of those things you buy on ThinkGeek
    • Functional, aesthetically pleasing
    • Novelty item
    • More social and means to start a conversation
    • Totally like a lava lamp
    • Can get boring
    • Disposable
    User 4
    • Kind of functional
    • Could be weight sensitive, tells you when drink is over
    • Functional
    • Interchangeable with the first one
    User 5
    • Could be interesting to use
    • Cold incorporate color temperature to tell the time of day
    • Very personable
    • Organic, welcoming look and feel
    • Poetic look and feel almost like the phases of the sun/moon
    • Interesting social aspect
    • Room for branding
    • Could react to sound
    • Cold look and feel, screams technology
    • Could be a backwards clock
    • Could user laser diodes
    • Could use XML data to be more meaningful
    User 6
    • Will it be enough to distract when setting reminders
    • Could be weight sensistive
    • Like the functional and social aspect
    • Cold use edge glow acrylic ot light wires
    User 7
    • Pleasing and abstract
    • Perfect for people who are consumed with work
    • Like the aesthetic appeal
    • Users should be able to program the times at which the colors change to afternoon, evening, etc.
    • Change color relative to weight of cup
    • Could be an indicator to the bartender
    • Could react to music
    • Wouldn't want it to be portable
    User 8
    • Could be a sphere with foldable legs
    • Activates when someone put their drink on the table and not using a coaster
    • Blue when in use
    • Patterns and colors change depending on number of drinks
    • Users can use their phone to connect with their coaster to get information about their drink
    • Interesting that it's portable
    • A lot of conceptual potential
    • Could project a narrative/animation
    User 9
    • Don't like the look and feel. Could be a sphere
    • Functional, more potential to scale
    • Interesting concept
    • Could be controlled with your iphone, Wii motes, etc rather than have switches
  • Yury Gitman 9:52 am on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    Ideal Users 

    Ideal users:

    User 1: Adult with disposable income and an interest in design objects – focus on use of product as an aesthetic/kitsch/design object
    User 2: Professional parent of young children, modest or significant disposable income – focus on use of product as an interactive comfort object for a child, specifically as a nightlight/toy


  • Yury Gitman 9:00 am on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    role, implementation, look+feel, and integrated prototypes 

    The following image represents a look+feel prototype. The objective was to mimic the concept of a cocoon in a more usable way than in previous cocoon prototypes. Here, ping-pong balls and some larger hollow plastic shapes are envisioned inside a stretchy nylon tube. The artifact is designed to be suspended from the ceiling and display quite a long pulse, perhaps one full pulse on and off through the course of a day, with a different type of signal pulse at the close of the day.


    The following is an example of an implementation prototype, in which the buttons create different gestures within 6 different boxes, each with a different LED inside. The images are a human cell time course accompanied by two vintage negatives of Victorian profile photographs. Both of these categories of images are intended to be suggestive of the passage of time.

    Integrated prototype:
    — look+feel – stylized plush owl of soft materials, potentially soft weight to maintain upright position
    — role in user's life – child's interactive nightlight
    — implementation – button in left ear blinks left eye, button in right ear blinks right eye


    Here are few additional look+feel prototypes for a cocoon-type artifact. The left-most is a difficult-to-achieve paper shred iteration. The second from the left is another iteration containing a wire frame to hold the cocoon body together.  The 3rd from the left is one possible incarnation in which a semi-solid shape would have a translucent window in the front from which light would come through.  The fourth is a cocoon made from layers donut-shaped cuts of thick felt or wool, layered on top of one another with LEDs shining through at intervals through the layers. This might also be created from corrugated cardboard, in which case the light might remain inside the central cavity and shine through the gaps created by the corrugation.


    The following is a look and feel prototype with a body composed of a ripstop nylon backed with translucent triangles of plastic to create a semi-fluid geodesic form to encase the hardware. I think that the end goal would be to make this a portable light by endowing it with rechargeable battery power such that a child could carry it around.


    The image below is an implementation/role prototype in which the user might slip an image into a projection box to create an enlarged image of, as suggested below, a window or an outdoors scene, mimicking natural sunlight in places where natural light might not be freely available indoors. The light cycle is envisioned to follow the relative 24-hour pattern of daylight (likened to a sine wave) and cycle through the seasons. It might require some user input for the date (perhaps a dial) such that the programmed length of day would correspond appropriately to the desired season. This might be useful for individuals with seasonal affectation disorder.


  • Yury Gitman 5:43 am on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    user testing 


    Brief – After presenting 6 ideation sketches this week, my task was really to narrow my product down.
    The votes were pretty spread out.  I did get to eliminate 3 designs.

    1. Form factor should not take too much table top space [Maral & Jennie]
    2. Product should not be too static in RE to clock [Conway]
    3. Caiti – my niece can't sleep with out her night light (go with the bedside product)
    4. I like the mobility of the product, also it would be cool to rotate all the way around [Namrata]
    5. Your sketches are very detailed, which is good, but you may be eliminating possibilities
    6. Try to make your product more flexible for shadow puppetry [Grace]
    7. Children love to copy parents and personify things [Lee]

    I have no access to children here however, this is a product that parent and child would use together,
    so getting class mate opinions are still very much worth while.

    All the comments given were helpful.  I have decided to remove the clock aspect of the artifact.  The main
    2 functions are really 1. nightlight and 2. a narrative toy for parent/child/friend participation.  The
    clock seems marginal in importance.

    The new sketch will be a simple box light with different "states" of lights such as "night mode colors,"
    "warm colors mode," "sky color mode," "hillside mode."  There will be included 4-5 films for backgrouds such as " stary night mode," sun and moon mode," theater room mode" and  "bridge."  Also included are several characters on sticks as a starter pack for shadow puppetry.

    User Profile:

    Mother – Penelope, Son – Hoit, Father – Maximus Decimus Meridius (leader of Romes Northern Legions)

    Penelope is a smart shopper, she only buys toys for Hoit if she feels it serves more than one function.  More importantly, she doesnt like any frilly toys that she knows Hoit will not play with for long. She is always looking for ways to spend time with her son.

    Hoit loves frilly toys, bright lights, and novelty.  He is quite creative, but gets bored quite easily.  Hoit is 6 years old and has a bit of anxiety during bedtime. Hoit loves bedtime stories from mom or dad.

    Maximus Decimus Meridius is father to a mudered son, husband to a murdered wife and he will have only the best toys for his only other son Hoit. Maximus is very much a kidult and can act like a child himself when playing with Hoit.

  • Yury Gitman 3:09 am on March 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply  

    DreamLight® • User Testing 

    User Scenarios:

    1.  Subject:  George. 5 years old.

    George has a huge problem. He is afraid of the dark.  The only way he can fall asleep at night is by sleeping in his parents' bed, or by leaving the light on in his room. Sleeping with his parents is downright embarrassing, and a burden for his parents. Leaving the light on wastes electricity and is a bad habit in general. The perfect solution is DreamLight. Now when he has friends sleepover at his house, George just needs to turn on DreamLight, and his friends don't think twice about this cool object that secretly helps George fall asleep.

    2. Subject: Zeno. 21 years old.

    Zeno is a senior in college. He loves to throw parties  at his house.  Unfortunately, his landlords don't take very good care of the estate, and only 2 lights still function in the entire house.  The bathroom and the kitchen.  This is unfortunate because ladies love to dance under groovy lights. Zeno is also broke, and can't afford anything too expensive.  Enter DreamLight.  Zeno sticks a couple DreamLights in his livingroom, and blam he's got a legit club bangin in his house.  A DreamLight in his bedroom has made the cluttered, un-decorated mess look much more appealing. Thanks DreamLight!

    3.  Subject: Jimbo. 45 years old.

    Jimbo owns a bar / club in the Lower East Side.  Customers have been complaining that the hallways are too dark, as are a couple of the corners of various rooms in the club.  Furthermore, each table in the bar has a tea candle for lighting, but by the end of the night the candles are completely gone. This has become expensive. DREAMLIGHT! for just $10, Jimbo can have lights at each table that last at least 5 years, and are multicolored! the ambience would improve 10-fold, and his customers now feel safe walking to the bathroom! Well done, Jimbo!

    Testing Data:

    Testers were directed to this page where they were shown 1 video and one schematic:
    the only information they were given was this:

    NiteLite® is a product to be used in any darkened room. Simply turn
    NiteLite® on, and enjoy the vibrant colors radiating from the base of
    the product and then watch in awe at the projection of colors on your
    ceiling or wall!
    Learn about additive color synthesis, as Red, Blue and Green light mix
    to make White, and every color in between!

    then they were asked these questions:

    1. What are your initial reactions to NiteLite®? Are you interested in using this product? ••2. Do you want to have any control, or do you desire any physical
    interaction with the product (ie, pressing buttons to alter the light)? ••3. What do you think could/should change about the NiteLite®’s physical design? Size? Shape? ••4. What room of your domicile would you put NiteLite® in? ••5. What sorts of activities do you think you would partake in, while in a room with NiteLite® turned on? ••6. Is there any functionality you would want NiteLite® to have? Features? ••7. Any other comments? ••8. Would you consider purchasing this product, and how much would you pay?

    I will now summarize the most useful, insightful, and worthy responses.  For full responses, visit HERE, and check the comments.

    (1.) Most people found the product interesting enough to at least try it out; the initial aesthetic and concept of a projection and learning about color synthesis was interesting as well.

    (2.) Here, responses were split. One great idea was just to have one single pot, with which you could move through all colors, and then the object would run by itself as well. About 60% of users thought it was better as a simple object, just turn on and watch. One called it a "lie back" product.

    (3.) Almost all responses said it should be smaller. The smaller the better, and also the more portable the better. Another said that the brightness of the box itself was distracting. One user made an image:

    This was implying that perhaps the colors wont mix correctly if the ceiling is too low.  The implication is that mirrors would be used inside the box to deflect the light.  I am inspired by the idea of using mirrors, but I don't believe that different ceiling heights would destroy the color mixing effect.

    (4.) By far, users wrote their bedrooms would be the place for this product. One mentioned a child's bedroom, which is one of my user scenarios. Living rooms were also mentioned.

    (5.) This question elicited many "colorful" remarks, ranging from dancing to partying with drugs to being intimate with partners to listening to music, and of course falling asleep. All of these are enjoyable activities, i'm glad no one replied "be bored alone".

    (6.) The best idea I received here was to make a built in timer, so that once someone falls asleep, DreamLight will also go to sleep.  Someone mentioned making the object sensitive to sound, however that would require a sensor, and for now I want this to be as simple a design as possible.

    (7.) The name. Many people thought "NiteLite" was far too literal, and I agree. I have come to three possibilities:  DreamLight, MoodScape, or MindScape.  I will user test these in the next round. Also, a comparison to lava lamps was made here, although this concept is clearly very different from lava lamps. A company called Mathmos was also mentioned, and I see some similarity to their aesthetic: http://www.innovatoys.com/p/TUMBLFZ

    (8.) Most people said they would consider purchasing the product and the prices ranged from $5 – $40. 

    Overall, I am going to DEFINITELY

        • include a timer in the code, for automatic shutdown

        • make the encasing of the object as small as possible, much more diffusion to make the box itself much less bright than it currently is

        • make the sequences have as little repetition as possible

    and i am going to RESEARCH

        • a new name

        •  using mirrors inside the product

        •  installing a knob for users to interact with if they want – 

Compose new post
Next post/Next comment
Previous post/Previous comment
Show/Hide comments
Go to top
Go to login
Show/Hide help
shift + esc