The Teams, The Breakdown

By Danielle Schipani

The class worked together as a team. The team was broken up into five different sub-teams. These sub-teams have worked together throughout the semester to reach a common goal. We have come together and had a meeting each class period and discussed our findings, our group needs from other groups, and our individual group goals. In this way we were able to be individually productive while also being productive as a team. IMG_20170125_205628

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Guest Lecturer: Hasan Elahi, Interdisciplinary Media Artist and Educator

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Hasan Elahi visited our campus for the past two days as part of the Monmouth University’s ART NOW campus programming and he was a guest lecturer in our Responsive Media class last night. He talked about how technological innovation often comes from artists decades before they are adopted by widespread audiences. Elahi’s own work focused on an artistic use of self-surveillance, technological tracking, and mapping. Learn how about his story and work here: https://www.ted.com/talks/hasan_elahi 

He taught us how to use Google Maps to self-publish crowd-sourced maps and we performed an exercise where we critically examined our campus in a timed observation and then mapped the results.

Getting Started: Research

By Amanda Ly

Our Journey began in Room 206, in the Plangere Center for Communication at Monmouth University, where we were exposed to our very first lessons in “responsive media”. We began learning about the design process and how to create interactive solutions for real life problems; tackling small assignments and discovering intriguing examples of responsive media that are utilized in the world today. In the short class time we were given, we were able to collaborate on projects, brainstorm ideas for the future, and think in newly creative ways resulting from the newfound technology to which we were introduced. Although we accomplished a lot with our small assignments, we were ready for something bigger, something that posed a true challenge. After learning about how design can improve our environment, we began thinking about our University and how we can enhance the student experience here on campus through design intervention. Then, we were invited to act upon those ideas through the MU Library. The library was a perfect place for us to start, as it serves as an integral element of a student’s educational experience. But before we could dive too deeply into our design daydreams, we had to start with square one: research.

Before we are able to design a solution, we must first understand where the problem lies. This is where our research team comes in. Currently, we’re still working on bits of research – as the learning process never ends – but we have found some significant information via the research we’ve undertook thus far. We took multiple surveys about student impressions of the library and how they intereacted with it, asking questions about what features they utilize the most and what they think can be improved. We even went so far as to conduct research on the premises, evaluating legibility and overall quality of signage, and the efficiency of the library’s catalog search engine. We combined our research and the information given to us by the librarians about the problems they have encountered, and came to the conclusion that the library needs some improvements in its signage and a revamp of its online presence. Though the biggest problem of all was students having trouble navigating the premises as a whole, so that’s where we set our focus.

For now, we’ve got our sights set on wayfinding and signage improvements, and we’re working on prototypes of our ideas, which will be presented during Scholarship Week at our University. Keep an eye on this page for updates on our progress, and to see the results of our wayfinding adventure.

Guest Lecturer: Niveda Harishankar, Amazon Marketplace UX Designer

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Niveda Harishankar, User Experience (UX) Design, for Amazon Marketplace was our special guest lecturer on Wednesday, February 8, 2017. She skyped into our class to talk to us about the role of UX in the design process at Amazon and more broadly in the process of human-centered design. She shared her thoughts with us about design heuristics, prototyping in low to high fidelity, affordance, interface feedback, and mapping the physical world into interface spaces.

She talked about her experiences moving from college life into her first professional job, her experiences at the Amazon Go store in Seattle, and the “Magic of objects and spaces” in Internet-of-Things (IoT) designs for proximity interactions. What a fun and informative evening!

Ideas Ideas Ideas: The Results of Research

By Danielle Schipani

As part of the research component to this class we came together as a group and collected our findings. As a class, we all independently broke off and conducted interviews with various relevant stakeholders on campus. After leading various in depth interviews we came together and lead a research findings exercise. We all had a pack of sticky notes and collected our findings all over the classroom in order to visualize the details of our findings. In this way we were able to both discuss our research as a group while also discovering patterns within our interview responses. In the end, this exercise eventually lead us to what would be our main research focus areas. IMG_20170201_191124