Monday, April 29, 2013

INDN 211: Project 2...Idea storm!

So, now that the first project is over, I have to look forward to how I'm going to create a product "that supports an everyday activity" of a particular group.

Now, getting this part of the project nailed down pretty soon is going to be very important. Some of the ideas that I've come up with are a little bit nuts. Again, there's constraints on what I can do. The project has to involve vacuum forming in some way or another, which should be the easy part, ideally!

One of the things that we're meant to identify early on is not WHAT our project will be, but rather who will it be for. And this is the crucial part. One of the things that was suggested to us was to create a persona. Someone whose shoes we could step into briefly and discover the world through their eyes, establishing what it is they need, what could be improved, and then go from there.

However, a first port of call was still to narrow down my project, at least a little. This project revolves, like the previous one, around a small phrase, this one being "Hold me". This could be interpreted in a multitude of different ways, and the person it's oriented at could perceive the nature of that phrase in a number of ways too.

I wanted to look at the idea of healthcare and rehabilitation, after much deliberation on this project. The idea came to me after thinking back to my childhood and remembering how I had a small, colourful rubber attachment for my pen to help me hold my pen correctly.

Thinking forward several dozen year, I then asked the question; what if someone had an accident that left them unable to write? This idea of aiming an assisting or rehabilitating product at someone older felt like it had much more direction now.

When people suffer from a spinal injury or stroke, sometime nerves or the brain are damaged in such a way that skills that seemed completely mundane suddenly needed to be re-learned. Often there are clinics for such rehabilitation, but I'm thinking about the stubborn person here. The stingy person. The person who is incapable of getting to the clinic. Someone who doesn't want help. Someone who wants people to leave them in peace and let them do it on their own.

Developing this personality really involves the target audience, even if it is indirect and roundabout. Another persona I could see this product targeted at would be someone who is new to the society, perhaps someone from a less educated background who has emigrated to a country with their family and has never been taught to write properly. Perhaps this person wants to get a job, and as a result needs to learn how to write.

The persona is key to developing the idea of my project further. Next, I'll try and define my persona a bit more.

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