Long Post

Hey all! So I haven’t written a full on post since Saturday, so I figured I’d keep my goals realistic for this one and call it what it will likely be: a long post. With that in mind, I’m going to start!

Also, quick protip for those here at the 3-4 o’ clock hour: freshman orientation has some good cookies and serves Caribou coffee!

Anyway, after that quick fun fact: back to work! Admittedly there’s not much else to talk about, as my team and I spent awhile designing our prototype and familiarizing ourselves with Axure. Good news: today at our meeting, we got really good feedback and he members of the lab had a lot of nice things to say about our design. There’s still a lot to do, of course, including outline our paper a bit based specifically on the CHI 2018 template.

Here are a couple other basic things we learned about how to proceed:

  • Both digital and paper methods are good for our project, but paper is better to present at meetings and to get feedback on
  • Keep the basic functions and system requirements in mind more than the programs themselves; don’t get boxed in by the existing software
  • Design like there are no limits; let other members of the lab give feedback on what’s possible and what’s not, and don’t let thoughts about constraints inhibit the initial brainstorming process
  • Meet with Hesham and Lakshay (who are working on UI and developing, respectively) to gain feedback during our group meetings about what is possible. To that end, plan he nxt meeting during the current meeting.
  • Practice agile design
  • Rehearse presentations at least a little bit in advance – “tell a story”

There were many other things we learned, of course, and many things specific to our design, but these are some of the overarching things.

Beyond that, we listened to a talk by Veronica Dark about cognitive science and the difference between perception and reality (a couple of you might have a laugh at that one). It was pretty cool, and showed how our expectations influence what we process and remember. It was also interesting from a UI perspective – how what the user is told and shown affects his or her level of confidence and memory when using an interface.

Beyond all that we’ve learned over the past couple days – in Axure, about prototyping and design, and in our Deeper Dives – I’ve also learned something about myself that I’ve been learning throughout this REU. And that is that I love organization.

Some of you who know me outside of work might laugh at this. No, I’m not always the most neat person in the world, and I can be pretty scattered in day-to-day life, but in the workplace and when working on a big project, I really enjoy keeping everything in order. For instance, in our Drive folder, everything is organized within this folder via their own folders. In addition, my lab notebook is really helping me do things like plan out scheduling, set to-do’s, make concept maps, keep track of questions, etc. Back in high school, I really enjoyed creating outlines as a study method, so this probably shouldn’t come as a surprise, but I really enjoy organizing information and planning things. It helps me keep everything straight in my head and makes accomplishing a task so much easier.

Anyway, that was a pretty interesting revelation that I’ve come to. Since this is getting really long, I’ll stop here and (maybe) write another post later relating to Deeper Dives and other things.

At least I warned you!


What happens when you spend enough time in front of a screen

Leave a Reply