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Salute 2021 UI/UX Winner
Published in “Design For Life,” 2021




Project Length
Nov - Dec 2020


Discipline
UI / UX


Devices 
Iphone
Physical Kiosk



For this design, I was tasked with creating a digital product for a mobile device or a kiosk installed in a physical space. The main purpose of this product is to promote healthier behaviors from users during the COVID-19 pandemic.

My final solution was a color-changing map system that doubled as a capacity tracker, updating in real time. This digital application and physical kiosk help promote social distancing by informing the user of overcrowded public spaces. This map redesign can be applied to a wide range of public areas, but is most specifically designed to serve 2020 holiday shoppers in a post-COVID-19 world.














A Mobile Experience...









...And A Physical One

















Case Study






Overview

The entirety of my design process took place as the 2020 holiday season was approaching. This allowed me to conduct research on how busy malls might be despite social distance guidelines and make my own educated guesses on how the shopping season might look.

During the moments approaching this past holiday shopping season, it was widely accepted that the Coronavirus could be spread quickly in public spaces. Regardless, there were minimal standards set in place by malls, shopping centers, or airports to help avoid mass exposure. I saw an opportunity to address this issue, and these are the steps I took to respond.












Here’s How I Started

To convince my professor (and myself) that this project was worth pursuing, I relied heavily on research. I conducted a poll of over 150 people about their shopping plans and scanned  databases for “mall activity projections and patterns throughout the years.”

Ultimately, I learned that malls would remain busy and delivery services would eventually become overworked, resulting in families receiving Christmas gifts late in the mail. And just like that, the need for an application to assist with in-person shopping was validated.








Creating User Scenarios

After collecting a convincing amount of research to support the necessity of a public map redesign, I made some short user scenarios. These storyboard sketches allowed me to conceptualize a few different cases in which this application could be used. This proved to be an important step in my process as I found myself coming back to the user scenarios during the times that I got stuck.









Keeping Multiple Audiences In Mind

I specifically designed this app for a variety of secondary and tertiary audiences. These would include shop owners, online shoppers, and mall loiterers. I wanted these map systems to stay relevant beyond Christmas shopping. The maps and locations available within the app can be modified for a wide range of public spaces. Movie theaters, hospitals, sports arenas, etc. can follow the same color system and the application’s interface can be updated visually depending on the season.










Putting the Design to the Test

Following the first completed system, I had the chance to let real people in my target audience test out the app. I created a task list of 11 steps and tested 5 different people. I timed each test and followed up with a quick survey; each one gave different insights into what could be improved. Whether it was illegible typography, confusing button locations, or dead-ends, I revisited the design and improved upon the areas that caused difficulty.














Final Words

By defining a fairly niche issue such as holiday shopping during the pandemic, I was able to indulge in a lot of hyper-specific research. This ultimately led me to create a functional application with a variety of relevant uses. My research and projections eventually proved to be accurate, as I witnessed a massive influx of public shopping around the holiday season. In my opinion, designing solutions to the issues created by COVID-19 creates a really unique and worthwhile exercise in user experience design.






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