Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Phase I. End

This is definitely long overdue. I should have written this a long time ago.
Because for now, this blog will serve as a repository for my processes that happened during my final year thesis project.

Thank you

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Design or Die

Once again, this blog will go on another short hiatus till the 5th of May 2009. And by then, all of the deliverables needed for me to graduate would have been submitted. Looking back at my work for my thesis, I think I've done fairly well in terms of having a consistent process. Too bad I can't say the same for my design though. I do hope that it gets better over time. And as the picture posted above says "Design or Die", this is the most apt expression at this point of time.

Monday, March 23, 2009

3rd Crit

I'm not sure if I can keep this up for long. The length of this whole thesis project has taken a toll on me and I think i have fully flexed the creative boundaries of the design in it's current stage. I could already foresee the next round of improvements done but this next step is going to be a giant leap in it's evolution. Anyway. 3 weeks have passed and I'm trying as hard as I can to keep this blog going. 28 more days and it will be almost over for me. In the meantime, I'm in the middle of preparing my panels for the next presentation. I have also managed to streamline my cadding workflow to the extent that I can churn out these renderings within a short time :

Monday, March 2, 2009

Mocked Up

I can't wait. Really. For all of these to be over. Well at least for while. My countdown timer says that I only have less than 6 weeks left before everything ends. I'm on an auto work mode where most of work processes have been streamlined to fully maximize the use of time. It has been tests after test where I am refining the design. I'll be having my second last crit tomorrow and even as I am typing right now, My laptop is still in the midst of rendering one of the product images. In case you have been wondering what I've been up to the past 2 weeks, here's a summary of it in pictures.

Monday, February 23, 2009


There isn't' really much thinking to be done right now at this stage of my thesis. It is pretty much design refinement and loads and loads of mockups. I don't think I'll be posting anything thought provoking for the next few weeks till I end the semester. It's a lot of doing a little less thinking.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Thesis updates and timeline

I've been meaning to show the whole process which includes sketches and mockups but I guess the severity of this project has taken a lot of my time. Hopefully though, that I could squeeze some of it and show it in the next few posts. The postings frequency has been rather random and slow of late but I do hope that you won't stop reading this blog.
I just had my first crit for this final semester. The comments were alright with most of my tutors telling me to dig deeper into the cultural aspect of my intended users. The change in the form and shape has been quite significant after doing feasibility studies and asking the users the right questions. It was also due to my supervisor's encouragement and suggestion that it had turned the way it is now. The following panels are just some of the updates with a timeline to the project included. The concept still stays the same and if you're thinking of having a look at how far this has come, the preliminary design is found here.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

don't settle for simple. Push.

Story-storming: The aftermath

Probably the most important aspect to designing a user experience is the ability to come out with creative storylines to enhance that experience. The steps are still pretty much raw but I've finally extracted the essence of the whole experience while collaborating with DELL. So here they are:

Story-storming : The steps
Works best when:
+ Having done the initial user observations

+ Not holding back on far-out ideas during the session, go crazy.

+ Ideas can always be scaled back later on to make the story more convincing.

1 . List out the various situations of the observed context in the order from start to finish.

2. Identify points of insignificance or irritation from within the list.

3. For each point noted, brainstorm ways to make that particular situation interesthing.

4. Rewrite the list again into a story by using the ideas from the brainstorm session.

5. Mix and match the ideas to make the story more interesthing and cohesive.

6. Sketch out the storyboard for visualization.

The steps will be revised from time to time.

Updated 8hrs Later:

I went about googling the term "story storming". Surprisingly, there's only one other related search found other than this blog entry. A book titled

"Digital Storytelling in the Classroom"

By Jason Ohler

has an almost similar method to the steps that I had written. The link to the book preview which is available on Google books is HERE.
In it, Ohler wrote about transformation in a story. I took this as reference to identifying points of irritation or insignificance in the steps I had written. Ohler also wrote that, the stronger the transformation, the stronger is the story.

I believe that this method to unleashing creative ideas is extremely helpful when we're looking for innovative ideas that are extremely context dependent. A further search on YouTube with the term "immersive design" returns searches in relation to set and production design. I think that design opportunities presents itself readily in movies and stories. It's like how many times have you gone " I wished that thing was real.." when you watch sci-fi shows?

I may have digressed abit in the last paragraph, but the point is, using stories to identify design opportunities are extremely powerful and I guess it relates easily to anyone when you have to explain the concept.

This is just one of the uses of stories to unlock creativity in the design area. I believe that this could be applied to almost anyone in any field.

Monday, January 19, 2009

DELL Immersive presentation test run

This is a short video when my partner and I did a test run of the presentation using 3 different laptops and 3 projectors prior to the final thing that was held at the DELL office. The whole idea is to be able to make a presentation that is as immersive as possible.
The concept of the design is a highly interactive environment for a guitarist to choose and select both his guitars and effects pedals. Adding to the experience is how the guitarist can activate and unlock room variables using guitar solos as a password. The user also chooses his guitars by means of hand movements that mimics the strumming of a guitar.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Experience Design process

The final presentation for a collaborative project with Dell finally ended 2 days ago at their office. 5 groups were shortlisted as the finalists and mine was one of them. Our design brief that was given when they came over one semester ago, was : to come up ( which is to design in this case ) and enhance the experience of the user in the chosen context of our choice. To me, what I gained most from this experience was the addition of another design process to add to my arsenal. In a nutshell, the whole process could be summed up into 3 phases:

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Tigga 2.0

I forgot how fun it was to use Rhino once again. I switched over to 3dmax during my 2nd year due to its nice default rendering engine. Now that I have Vray installed, its back again to Rhino, and its so much better to do surfacing. I've cleaned up my Tigga design. It's form is still much to be desired. But I'm putting this up because of of it's eye-candy factor. On a side note, I've yet to put up my process sketches. I'm still in the midst of mapping things out. It's wonderful to be in in my 4th year with supportive tutors like Dr. Yen and Carlos. I appreciate all they have done so far and the things they allowed me to do. It'll be less than 124 days till the end of my semester.

Monday, January 5, 2009

I want to hack my bicycle

Design opportunities are aplenty here on this sunny island if one pays close attention. And I think that bicycles does present a lot of it. Just last week after having encountered the Leaf-kite, I saw an interesting add-on to one of the bicycle that was locked at the park there. Its owner had wrapped the center part with a stretchable netting. This then had created compartment that is big enough to put small items in.What I could imagine from this are bicycles with designs that utilizes its central portion fully. It could be a small compartment to put files or books in when commuting within the campus.