My team designed a future map system for Melbourne, AU for the 24 hour design challenge of the OZCHI 2009 conference. StoryTime is a system of geographically associated “stories” as told by the people who experienced them. It allows visitors to explore and experience places through other people and the community’s perspectives. We presented the interaction of experiencing stories through the use of an e-paper concept. This design won the second prize in the challenge.
Video for for 24 hour online design challenge, and paper published in OZCHI 2009 conference proceedings.
The center of our system is a database which stores multimedia stories associated with locations. People can add stories to the database through public or private devices, which we call ‘story sharing’. At the same time, people can access those stories through public or private devices, which we call ‘story experiencing’. We focused our design on experiencing stories with personal devices. In the video we use an e-paper (we call it personal information paper, PIP) concept to illustrate the interaction.
During the 24 hours, we started with research of the city of Melbourne and of interesting map concepts. Through the result we found out that history is a very important part of Melbourne: many interesting stories are hidden behind Melbourne’s buildings and streets. Also, concepts such as psychogeography and participatory mapping, as well as the use of augmented reality in mobile devices gave us inspiration of how the future map would work.
We created personas to guide our thinking in a user-centered way. Our two personas include a casual tourist and a business traveler, since they have overlapping needs but at the same time, they have different anticipations for their travel.
For concept generation, we did several rounds of discussion, brainstorming, sketching, body storming and physical prototyping, mainly focused on ways to sharing and experiencing stories associated with certain places and how tangible interaction will benefit the whole experience.
After those design sessions, we came out with some initial concepts and physical prototypes, and the challenge was to pick one form to carry the concept forward since each of us had different preferences. We decided to invite some people outside of the project to do cognitive walkthroughs with scenarios and physical prototypes, to help use evaluate the design. The discussion gave us insight for our redesign, and we generated several more concepts for possible tools to access StoryTime.
For our final submission video, I created an appearance prototype with Photoshop of a scenario to introduce our concept, and helped with storyboard creation for producing the video. After the design had won, my team and I wrote a paper about the design and published in OZCHI 2009, and I was mainly in charge of designing a poster for exhibition in OZCHI 2009.
Designers should value outside voices. There are times that we need them to move forward. In this project, we benefited from outside voices intellectually and emotionally. I believe that opinions from people outside of the project can help designers re-examine the whole situation, and pay attention to things that might get lost in the process or get inspired to come out with new ideas.