Personally, I found this project interesting for a number of reasons. As a product designer, I have little experience with digital systems; so this was an excellent opportunity to explore a different discipline of design. It’s also interesting to work with different people in a group project, learning how they work and how they express their ideas, and the team working skills that I’ve gained can be applied to industry.
The key terms in this project helped direct the product development. While the idea of Ubiquitous technology is interesting, I feel modern smartphones are currently sufficient in delivering constant access to information. Therefore, I feel our final design reflects heavily in the area of Ambient Intelligence; enhancing the user experience through a physical gateway to the digital world.
Through the course of this project I’ve developed my skills in user focus through the need to identify a persona. I’m very interested in form and aesthetics, and this project gave me another opportunity to explore this area, and to make the form fit the persona and function whilst remaining an aesthetically pleasing product. Also during this project I was able to make use of 3D printing for the first time, which involved the group creating a full model in SolidWorks. Rapid prototyping is often used in industry applications, and it was informative to experience the process first hand. For the final presentation, I put together a poster showcasing our final design. My Layout was simple so as to focus on the product, but it contained no sense of scale for the user to relate to. I feel the group as a whole communicated well with a group page that everyone had easy access to, to share ideas, photos and documents. Other skills I feel I’ve developed include usability, design practice and self-reflection.
Other improvements to future projects would be to further integrate every group member into every aspect of the project, instead of assigning tasks then putting it all together at the end. The group time-keeping was off at times, with the project starting slow, then turning to a rush of work. It would also have been good if the LED circuit for the model had not broken before the final presentation, therefore more practice at soldering and circuit making will be needed for future projects. Finally, I feel researching into more depth in and around the subject area can only improve knowledge and produce the best possible work.