Brain Storming for Human-Computer Interaction

Trying desperately to think of a new slant on my concept for my presentation tomorrow… using the reading “Spark Innovation Through Emphatic Design” in the Harvard Business Review by Leonard and Rayport. Think about customer scenarios…. define user needs, aims and objectives, and user requirements. OK. Think. Think. Think.

Is there a way of using the phone to communicate information about the day or what the user will be doing during the day from the moment your alarm goes off?
Or, how could you spark interaction with people who would normally not interact with each other – for example at the bus stop, or while they were commuting? Is there an activity that people can do anywhere where they are doing something repetitive and creating something… could it be used to engage the community for people to be more aware of what’s going on in their neighbourhoods and further engage them in “grassroots” events that contribute to stronger community bonds.

Phone as a flashlight… Inarticulated user needs for the target audience…

Let’s try one scenario:
My morning coffee… I buy a coffee from the coffee shop almost every morning (as do most people), I don’t buy on when I’m running late, and I have my preferred cafes where I like the taste of the coffee and the price isn’t over $3.50 for a large take-away coffee. I stopped going to a cafe I really liked going to because they raised the price to $4 for a cup of coffee – which in my books is riddiculous – no matter how good they make it.
I pick the location of where to get my coffee on: the distance it is from my destination (generally the closer the better), but also, on the ambiance of the cafe – does it look like they care about what they serve and how well they prepare the coffee itself – so I probably wouldn’t go to Doughnut King or a uni cafeteria because I think they just have the machines there to cater for a need for the lazy people who don’t really care what their coffee tastes like, they just want to grab a cup. I also look at the barrista and assess using my own judgement if they look like they could make a good cup of coffee – this is personal discretion and usually there isn’t much factual evidence to back up my reasoning.
I wait around while I’m waiting for my order to be ready, and in this time, I’m not usually doing very much, just looking at the other people, or looking at the people working at the cafe. I might read the headlines of the newspaper if it is around.
Alternatively, getting coffee is a very social thing. It can be another way of having an interview for a job, or the first point of contact with a person you are getting to know. It is also a quick way for you to catch up with your friends if you don’t have much time. It usually takes anywhere between half an hour to an hour….
What problems could arise from getting coffee? I may not have enough time – maybe I double booked myself, or I think that coffee will keep me awake, when in fact I need to drink something else to make me more productive…?


Ambient visualisations from the flashing of the lights on the side of the phone – like what happens when I have a missed call or a message that I haven’t checked.

Shaving… interesting.

Fishing directory, indicating tides and good times for each location through a visualisation that is synchronised with the tower station suburb on the display which is already an option already on the phone.

Going back to shaving.


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