This project was part of my studies in UX design and was designed to be a speculative design, meaning it is intended to spark conversation and challenge the future rather than present a fully realized product. My goal with this project was to create a dystopian design that would discomfort users and serve as a conversation starter to explore the potential consequences of
The goal of this project was to create an experience that does not yet exist and to elicit a range of emotions in users. I wanted users to feel initially intrigued, but as they engage with the design, I hoped to shift their feelings toward unease and discomfort.
What I've Learned
I learned about the importance of testing and gathered feedback from both real users and pilot testing to improve my prototype. In the future, I hope to refine my prototyping skills and prioritize user needs over my personal preferences.
Microsoft reaction cards
Just me, so I did everything from research and workshops to prototyping and test
6 and a half day
So, what's the problem?
The problem started with the exam. I could do anything I wanted as long as it was speculative. I had gotten the idea that I wanted to do something with dreams since it exists in our everyday lives but remains a great mystery to us.
How Might We
"Create a speculative design that challenges our thoughts about dreams and their use"
Time to create
To not get lost in my process I used the Double Dimond methodology.
PROTOTYPE, TEST, REFINE
RESEARCH, ANALYZE, SYNTHESIZE
As part of this project, I created a film and product images of a machine to present as a pitch to the end user. I used a structured planning approach, including creating a list of tasks and using Post-it notes to track my progress. This helped me stay organized and focused on completing the project successfully.
Stage 1: Discover
To start things off I needed to learn more about dreams to see if my idea is at all possible in the future.
No one knows why we dream but there's a lot of exploration happening in that scientific area
Some scientists think it has to do with us learning or dealing with unconscious memories
The body can't be fully asleep then it won't dream, things that can help the body stay lucid is warmth and sounds
We don't feel the same while dreaming
There's a way to trigger memories with sound and smell
Hormones help sort memories in different parts of the brain
I wanted to discover the idea of using dreams for something and see what people thought of the idea, so I created a storyboard. I choose to send the storyboard digitally and then have the users answer via Microsoft reaction Cards. this is something I later came to regret, I'll talk more about that later.
The workshop generated a lot of new ideas and thoughts. The participants of the workshop also discussed what they find unpleasant about dreams so I had a lot to move forward with.
I wanted some help with the ideation and decided to have a workshop regarding the theme "dreams".
The methods we used during the workshop were:
Circulating sketch (circulating between everyone for 2 minutes each)
Making your own sketch
The workshop was 1 and a half hour long and was conducted with 4 people.
Stage 2: Define
At this stage, I had a lot of research and data from the workshop.
The things I found:
The thought of being able to control your dreams are thrilling
People are generally positive towards manually changing their dreams, less so if anything is inserted into the body
They're a bit worried about dreams and their real purpose, what happens if they're removed?
Would be cool if it's like an everyday experience just like listening to audiobooks before bed
The users want a mobile first application
I knew what my workshop users thought but I also needed to gather information from other people so I created a Story Board that I sent out digitally with information and a form with Microsoft Reaction Cards. I wanted to know if they're initially positive towards the idea of Deep Sleep. I sent this out to 5 new people.
Story about Anders
Anders works full-time at an office.
He works intensely and he constantly tries to live up to his boss's expectations of him.
Anders sleeps but gets no further
recovery from his sleep. He feels that he will never truly recover.
He starts a new, stressful work day.
Anders is so exhausted that he can hardly stand anything at all. He just gets more and more tired.
He feels that he is stuck in the squirrel wheel. He works, eats, sleep, and then the cycle starts again. When will he have time for other things in life and rest?
Anders discovers Deep Sleep, which allows him to get more recovery when he sleeps. They use a new technology where you can decide for yourself what to dream about.
Anders dreams peaceful dreams and gets real rest. He finds it meditative to be out in nature and therefore dreams of hiking.
Through the better quality of sleep, Anders has more energy at his workplace.
Stage 3: Develop
I started with low-fi wireframes creating frames inspired by ordinary health apps and streaming services.
From low-fi to mid-fi
After pilot-testing the first version myself I noticed that some parts were missing in the costumer journey. So I added some frames.
Due to the little time I had, I didn't have time to make it pixel-perfect. But it didn't have to be perfect for me to test it.
I explained this new technology and gave the user the phone to look around in the app. I had also given the test person a timeline to do some UX curves. As I said in the beginning. I wanted the user to feel good initially and then feel uneasy. I did this test on 2 people.
It was an overall good experience,
I had to make it worse.
I added horrible categories to point at misuse with a technology like this. I hid the category a bit further down the page to not make it too obvious.
I tested the new "worse" version with 4 new people. Resulting in 4 new UX-Curves.
Before the change
After the change
Stage 4: Deliver
After these 6 and a half days I delivered:
So, did I learn anything?
This project was a particularly valuable experience for me, as it allowed me to work independently and explore new methods and techniques.
One of the things I really enjoyed was using UX-Curves to determine what matters most to users. This helped me focus my efforts and prioritize the most important features and functions of my prototype.
Throughout the process, I also learned a lot about testing and the importance of gathering feedback from real users. I conducted multiple rounds of testing, both with real users and through pilot testing, to ensure that my prototype was effective and user-friendly. While I recognize that there is always room for improvement, I am proud of what I was able to accomplish in such a short amount of time.
Moving forward, I hope to continue to build on my skills and knowledge as a UX designer. Specifically, I want to focus on refining my prototyping skills and developing higher-fidelity prototypes using the 4/8 method. I also want to work on my ability to "kill my darlings" and prioritize the needs of users over my preferences.
Overall, I believe that my dedication to learning and my focus on user-centered design makes me a valuable asset as a UX designer