IDEA9106 Design Thinking

Design is a state of mind



Tutorial Refelction 10-kyan8870

1.How did thinking in terms of shots and scenes influence your approach to communicating your design concept?

The scenes and shots provides a good way for me and my team members to communicate and discuss. This is better than only imaging the scenes in our minds, which is difficult to express our thoughts and make ourselves understood. Using these can give a more direct view of our design concept.

2.What motivated your choice of storyline structure? Can you think of an exemplar from a film that uses the same structure?

We choose the liner story line which contain elements like, who, what, when, where, why, and how. This will make the story clear and easy to be understood by others. At the same time, the logic of this method is easy and we do not need to know too many other things to create a good story.

  1. What choices did you make about audience and style? Were they related?

Our target is teenagers, especially international students. And our story is about a group of strangers in a campus. The audience will watch a story how they become friends because of playing basketball together. This is closely associated with international students’ daily life.


Tutorial reflection 9-kyan8870

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

In this tutorial class, I selected a toothbrush. At the beginning, I think it can be used for cleaning tooth. At the same time, it can also be used as a small brush. To be honest, it can brush anything, and the result is that no one wants to use it as a toothbrush again. After the class, I just found more affordances of it. Firstly, it can be used as a stick to tilt other things. Secondly, two toothbrushes can be used as chopsticks. Thirdly, it can be a holder for mirrors.

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. 

In this class, i tried to use a pair of chopsticks to control the toothbrush. It is really difficult to use it. I totally could not handle the bursa and could not use too much force. For normal people, it’s easy to brush tooth. But for those who have physical disabilities, this is a great challenge. From this, i learnt that sometimes a design is suitable for most of people, but it can be a problem for some special groups, like the old and the disable.

Tutorial Reflection-kyan8870

1) What kinds of information and insights did it give you about the usability of the prototype?

As a user

User observation

In the prototype, if I am the user, I have to show my thoughts and feelings while I was doing the task. Non-verbal expressions also provide important information in prototyping. Sometimes, these non-verbal expressions can show your status more directly.

Think aloud

Because I need to perform as a user, I have to try my best to act like what I will do if I were really using a product. However, sometimes it is quite difficult to perform as usual. You know that you are being observed, and this can lead to some unexpected feelings, such as upset. Sometimes, I just thought of some ways to solve the problem, but they are not what the observers expect me to do. It is really a challenge.


As an evaluator

User observation

Observing and recording most of the behaviours of the user are not a simple task. It is better to record those important ones. Sometimes, I have to communicate with the users to lead the task. Sometimes, if the users did not speak anything, I have to focus on both of the behaviours and the screen.

Think aloud

From the users’ words and facial expressions, we can know that if they have some problems or finish the tasks easily. The challenge is to identify these behaviours.


2) What aspects of the technique worked well or were frustrating?

As a user

User observation

Advantages: different ways to express feelings, can focus on tasks

Disadvantages: cannot observe as usual


Think aloud

Advantages: the performance can simulate behaviours in a real situation

Disadvantages: performance can be influenced by personal factors



As an Evaluator

User observation

Advantages: gain data from different ways

Disadvantages: difficult to record detailed information


Think aloud

Advantages: a good way to search the usability

Disadvantages: sometimes have to lead the user, sometimes they cannot find the solutions because of poor observation


Tutorial 7 Relfection-kyan8870

How did physically acting out help to explore ideas?

Well, from my perspectives, physically acting is method that help you simulate the situation. In this situation, you will experience a simulated user experience of a service or products. You can feel what you want and what you dislike, which can lead to more ideas. What is more, via physically acting, the developer can know what exactly their users want instead of imaging the functions they thought that are necessary but in fact useless.


Did you refine your ideas and solutions to the problem through bodystorming? In what way?

In the tutorial, I and my group did use bodystorming to think up problems and their solutions. We asked some members to sit on chair and pretend to be on a plane. Then let them to try to sleep or do some other tasks. Once they found a problem, we tried to use items around to solve it.


What was difficult or challenging about bodystorming?

There are several problems. Firstly, the actors cannot devote themselves to the bodystorming. You know, we are simulating the situation. Although actors try to behave like a user, there are a lot of differences between them and real users. Secondly, sometime when we found a problem, we find it difficult to use nearby items to solve it. That’s very annoying because some ideas are great but you cannot test them. The last one is how to achieve the solutions in reality. Some ideas seem to be successful and great. But in real situation, they cannot be designed as we thought in bodystorming, such as size or other factors.


kyan8870-Summary Posterkyan8870_SummaryPoster

Tutorial 4 Reflection-kyan8870

Briefly reflect on the lessons learnt from each exercise
Reflective listening
To be a good listener, there are several important things that we need to learn. The first thing is to respect the speaker. It is impolite to bother others while they are talking. The second thing is to listen with thinking, which can help you understand the speaker’s feelings. The third thing is that do not predict what the speaker will say. In other words, do not listen with prejudice. The next one is to try to reflect in right ways, such as eye-contact, nod and facial expressions. This can show your interests to the content spoken. Do not reflect perfunctorily.

Defamiliarisation of everyday reality
From this exercise, we can learn that although we think we are familiar with all the things of our daily lives, we still ignore some details in our daily activities. Everyone knows that the apple will drop from the tree, but only Newton realized the existence of the gravity. It is an interesting exercise to teach us to explore and study the same things. Different people can get different information from the same things.

Empathic modelling
This exercise is to visit a familiar place with an unfamiliar view. Sometimes when you can not use your eyes to see things clearly, you can still recognize them by their color, shape or even sound. By doing this, you can even get more information which may be ignored before. It is a world which you cannot imagine without experiencing it by yourself. What is more, this also tells us how to design for users. Try to think and behave as a user and then you will know what you need.

Tutorial 3 Reflection-kyan8870

Describe your experience of creating personas from different users’ perspectives gathered in the interview data. Was there enough commonality between the 4 people interviewed to form a coherent persona? Or did it make more sense to create a second different persona?

Our group choose the topic “going to the supermarket”. The first step is to interview each other. Because there were no specific problems, we just asked random questions. This led to the problem that some questions are useless or cannot be allocated into the same group. Then we gathered all the information to find the similarities. However, it is quite difficult to find commonalities among 4 people. At last, we created a persona, which is the easiest task. Personally speaking, only one persona is not enough. We cannot use one persona to describe the data.


Do you think your final persona(s) was successful in generating empathy with users? What would you change to make it better?

From my perspective, the persona we created was successful in generating empathy with some users, but more personas are needed. To improve the performance of personas, there are three major methods. The first one is to interview more people, which can produce more useful data. The second one is to create a frame of interviews, including problems and aspects. This makes it better to find the commonalities. The last one is to produce more personas.


Tutorial 2 Reflection-kyan8870


How did this exercise help you build empathy with prospective users?

In this exercise, we can learn about the basic information of the users, especially their needs. Their personal information, such as family, interests and others, can help us understand their needs and their feelings. At the same time, this exercise taught us that we cannot use our objective view to consider about the users. It is a good way to combine needs from different users to analyse and finally solve the issues.

How did the clustering of information help you understand user needs?

There are several benefits of the clustering of information. First of all, it provides a more organized and directly view of user needs. Secondly, it indicates some common characteristics of their needs. Thirdly, it is easier to analyse the relationship between different needs.

What was difficult or challenging with the technique? How would you do it better next time?

The most challenge with the technique may be identifying the class of the needs to put them together. There is a large amount of information where we have to find useful information. This is a hard work. The border between two classes is not clear, which make it difficult analyse the potential relationship.

To improve our performance, it is a good way to use some marks and symbols to classify them. When we are finding the useful information, we can mark each one with a general type of class. This can help us classify them sooner. Also, we can give a value to each need to find the best way to improve all the users’ experience.



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