IDEA9106 Design Thinking

Design is a state of mind


Ahmed Sabeeh Abid

Projaction – Assessment 3: Project Presentation

Group Name: Projaction

Team Members:

  1. Ahmed Sabeeh Abid (aabi0651)
  2. Joseph Wakim (jwak9113)
  3. Hema Shunmugham (hshu1423)


Projaction – Project Presentation


Tutorial 8 – Evaluation – Ahmed Sabeeh Abid (aabi0651)

As a User

Q1. What kinds of information and insights did it give you about the usability of the prototype?

So when it was my turn to be the user, I was given Task#3 (Find a paper at the library site). I thought that it would be a little complex but when I started performing it, it turned out to be pretty easy and quick. I found the USYD Library website easy to use and everything was placed where I thought it should be. It took me less than 2 minutes to perform my task and everything went pretty smoothly. After I completed my task I felt pretty confident and I would definitely use this website more frequently.

Q2. What aspects of the technique worked well or were frustrating?

I found the thinking aloud part a little distracting while performing my task. Also as long as things were going well and there wasn’t anything to complain about, I didn’t feel the need to think out aloud. I later realized that this was not the correct way to go about this technique as my observers couldn’t figure out exactly what was going on in my mind. Since I performed my task in a very short time there wasn’t much that I said, hence my observers felt a little neglected.


As an Evaluator

Q1. What kinds of information and insights did it give you about the usability of the prototype?

During the physical observation, I was able to record the verbal and nonverbal behavior of my users. I was able to record exactly what my users said at a certain point of the task. Since everything was also being recorded, it was really helpful to go over it again and see at exactly which point of the interface the user made that remark. This technique was useful as it pinpointed the exact places or features of the prototype which the user liked or disliked. I was able to jot down the exact quotes of the users along with their facial/bodily expressions, which provided information in terms of the severity/intensity of the usability issues identified.

Q2. What aspects of the technique worked well or were frustrating?

Video recording of the whole process was a great idea. We could easily go all over it again and make sure we observe each and everything. However, there was one issue with the recordings as well. Since there was only one angle from which the video was recorded it was really difficult to capture both the user’s face/body and the prototype’s interface. Only one of them could be focused at a given point so it was frustrating at times to figure out at what point in the interface user made that comment/gesture. A good solution to this would be to capture interface screen as well and then run it parallel to the video recording of the user.



Tutorial 7 – Interrogating Affordances – Ahmed Sabeeh Abid (aabi0651)

Q1. Choose one of the objects you selected and describe how your initial understanding of its affordances changed over the course of the exercise?

The three objects that I brought for this tutorial were a plastic disposable spoon, a UHU glue stick and a small grooming scissor. The object I am going to choose for this question is the plastic spoon. Normally, these plastic spoons are used for parties and picnics. They are mostly very cheap and light weight and are usually disposed after their use. As I sketched this spoon and started to analyze it, I realized that there is much more to it then we normally notice. I noticed that the handle is long enough that even a person with a relatively bigger hand can easily use it. The handle also had a small dotted pattern which provided friction for a firm grip. However, as it was made of plastic it can be easily broken and can only hold a limited amount of weight. One of the perceptible affordance was that the depression allows for things to be held in. The thin and lengthy handle of the spoon can also be used as a screwdriver in some cases. It can also be used to cut soft materials such as cakes or pastries. However, if it is used to cut through hard materials/food it is likely to break. Also unlike the steel spoons, this spoon can be used in a microwave as well.



Q2. Given that affordances is a relational property between a person and an object, how did the manipulation of the object and the person’s abilities inform your understanding of the concept? Did it give you inspiration or insight for how to work with affordances as a designer? Discuss this through the specific objects you explored in the exercise.

I did a lot of experimentation with my partner in terms of manipulating the object as well as limiting one person’s abilities. Although using the cling wrap or aluminum foil didn’t help us much so we decided to wear gloves and use tape to stick both hands together tightly and then interact with the object. It was surprising to realize that after wearing gloves I wasn’t able to feel the rough pattern of the spoons handle which was there for the purpose of a firmer grip.

I then blindfolded my partner and asked her to use the grooming scissor I brought to cut the paper in a circle and use the glue to paste it table. She tried a couple of times but wasn’t able to cut the paper in a circle like shape. When it came to pasting it, she could easily identify which end of the glue was the bottom one just by touching it, and performed that task with ease.

Overall, this whole exercise was an inspirational one as I have never experienced using these everyday object with such manipulation. It made me realize how certain features of your design can be helpful in certain scenarios which we normally take for granted.



Tutorial 6 – Experience Prototyping – Ahmed Sabeeh Abid (aabi0651)

Q1. How did physically acting out help to explore ideas?

The problem that our group was allocated was “Improving doctors waiting rooms”. We started jotting down all the issues we thought are present in the existing waiting rooms. Everyone in the group had something new to add as we all had been through different experiences. After we had made the list of all the existing issues, we assigned roles to each one of us and started acting out a scenario. We thought that we had covered everything in the list but it was surprising that a lot of new things came up while acting which we didn’t thought of before. Physically acting out the problem added a totally new dimension to my thought process and made me see things in a more realistic manner. I would definitely say that this technique takes you to a totally new level of empathizing with your users.

The issues and their tentative solutions
The issues and their tentative solutions

Q2. Did you refine your ideas and solutions to the problem through body storming? In what way?

Yes absolutely. Once we started acting out our scenario we realized a few environmental variables that we had missed before. For instance, while acting out, one of us pretended to be a new patient entering the doctor’s clinic. According to our scenario the receptionist was very tired and busy using his phone and didn’t notice the arrival of the new patient. Thus we had totally missed out how a new patient is supposed to gain receptionists attention upon arrival, esp. if the patient is in need of an emergency help. We realized this problem through body storming and added a bell on the reception table to call the attendants if they were not present already.

Our Solution
Our Solution

Q3. What was difficult and challenging about bodystorming?

The difficulty that I faced during bodystorming was the lack of actual infrastructure. We lacked the furniture and setting we wanted to be in the room where we acted. A lot of things were not actually there and we had to imagine them in certain places. Also we lacked the props we needed for acting. Thus we had to use alternate things that we could find lying around, which were totally different to what we actually wanted.

Q4. Does bodystorming lend itself to certain types of problems?

I think that while acting out a situation, we sometimes tend to exaggerate than what actually happens. Also we create our own scenario and setting according to what we think happens actually in real life, but in reality no one setting/scenario is exactly similar to another one. Thus all of our solutions and ideation only takes place in that limited scenario that we have created for ourselves, which might not fully portray the real world.

Our concept map
Our concept map

Supporting Community Activism Through Technology

aabi0651 - Research Summary Poster

Feedback and My Responses


Tell me more about this. Could this data be sold?
The public data collected from social media forums is then processed keeping in mind various criterion. After this raw data is turned into useful information and is in large enough quantity that it is capable of delivering concrete results/conclusions, this data will definitely have a monetary value and can be sold.

How do you create awareness for non-activist people?
My concept 1 mobile app caters the needs of both activist and non-activist people. It is open for all and anyone can register on the app. Once non-activist people have registered their interests on the app they will constantly receive notifications of the ongoing events and activities in their surrounding area, based on those interests. This is how they will be aware of what’s going on around them and then can contribute to it if they are willing to do so.

How can you get people’s email id? What about privacy issues? How do you deal with it?
This question was regarding my initial concept 2. I have clearly mentioned in my concept that only PUBLIC data will be collected i.e the data which people have already made public for everyone to see. Hence there is no question of privacy issues. As far as the collection of data is concerned it can be done through various APIs e.g Facebook API allows you to fetch public data from people’s profiles. Lastly, we can only get email Id’s of those people who have made it public on their social media profiles.

I didn’t know about Periscope
Periscope is a live video streaming app for iOS and Android developed by Kayvon Beykpour and Joe Bernstein. Periscope lets you broadcast live video to the world. Going live will instantly notify your followers, who can join, comment and send you hearts in real time. Users of Periscope are able to choose whether or not to make their video public or simply viewable to certain users such as their friends or family.


Tutorial 5 – Ideating – Ahmed Sabeeh Abid (aabi0651)

Q1. How did taking the position of an Extreme User influence your thinking in relation to the design challenge? Was it different to how you usually generate ideas and empathy?

This tutorial was really fun and I enjoyed it a lot. It was a perfect example of allowing yourself to “think outside the box”. Our group was allocated the extreme user case called “The Trekkies” and we were supposed to imagine ourselves as sci-fi, high-tech fanatics. Soon all of us started having plethora of crazy ideas and which kept on pouring in continuously till the end.

The good thing about this tutorial was that we were not limited to the real world constraints. In fact we were not even limited to the constraint of time, as we had to imagine something (i.e. use of telephone booth) in future to come. This was a lot different to how we have been generating ideas previously, in which we had to keep in mind certain limitations. Even though we were free to come up with any ideas how insane they may be, by the end of it when we analyzed, a few of our ideas were actually really good and implementable. This was really surprising to see none of us was expecting this outcome.



Q2. Did any of the other design thinking techniques (design provocation cards, stories, storyboards, etc.) help you to work through ideas and collaborate with your group members?

As soon as we were allocated the extreme user case, crazy ideas started pouring in from all the group members. And this went on for the rest of the time and we didn’t even felt the need of using the design provocation cards at all. When we moved on to making stories and narratives, almost all of us had something interesting to add to the scenario in the story. This way our story turned out to be pretty engaging as well.

Luckily, we had a fine arts graduate (Rezan) in our group, who used his doodling skills to help us better illustrate our story. All of us first drew our own versions of the storyboard to see how different variations of the same story could turn out. Finally, we took the best scenes/suggestions from each to create our final storyboard. The whole process was definitely a collaborative one.

The collaboration was not just limited within each group because as we presented our stories to everyone else, we received more ideas/suggestions/feedback from other groups as well.


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