Ultimate concern for Elders.
The background of our team
The team Numinous consisted of totally 6 students who were interested in UI/UX design and programming. Their goal was to solve the loneliness problem encountering by many elders so they decided to develop an App together to help those elders step out from such dilemma. The logo was designed by Sizhao Li and adopted by the whole team as we believed it expressed the feeling of Numinous through creatively synthesising different elements including ocelot, moon and mystique.
My Role: Chief UI/UX design
Team member: Sizhao Li, Juan Zapien, Hanhui Lou, Zhaoyue Xiang, Peter Chen, Yaohui Lu
Tools: Photoshop, illustrator
After a series of discussion, we found out that many elders were suffering from loneliness because their children were very busy so that the elders did not want to occupy their time. Therefore, they could only kill time by themselves. Furthermore, some researches also showed that 43 percent of elderly people over 60 years old had feelings of loneliness. Besides, children may did not know what were the needs of their parents so they would just prefer maintaining the status quo instead of making some changes. Hence, they needed an App which could help them to reunite together.
What we did
We developed an App called “Gather” for not only elders but also for all family members. They were able to arrange events and view their family trees conveniently. The video shows the rough concept of our App.
WORKFLOW OF OUR APP development
STORYBOARD & PERSONAS
According to the survey result we did with our own family members and local nursing house, we drew several storyboards and personas to embody our ideas about how to solve such problem. We also tried different approaches to solve the problem but we finally decided to focus on mobile device because it was the most popular tools among all kinds of generations. In conclusion, we learned more about our users than we expected by sketching user experiences, but we still have a lot to iterate and think before making the actual product.
Since our common approach was to increase bonding between seniors and their surroundings, we then had a consensus about developing an App for arranging family meeting as we observed that the reason why those seniors felt lonely was because they did not want to intervene the life of their later generations and vice versa. Thus, we would like to provide a platform for them to comprehend the importance of enjoying time with their families.
The clumsiness of our first draft soon drew our attention since there were so many texts over the layouts, which was not friendly to senior users. As a result, we decided to optimize the usability of the App. Specifically, we tried our best to diminish the existence of texts in our App and replaced them with icons or hand gestures to make it more accessible. Furthermore, in order to encourage the participation of family groups, we created a real tree-like family tree to trace the relationship between each pair of family members. Users could improve the health level of the tree through participating in different family activities. They could also share the photos of each activities and comment on them for memorizing purpose.
USER TESTING & FEEDBACK
We all understood that the decisions we made during this time would be critical to our success in making an app that was suitable to the needs of the elderly. With that in mind, we needed to take the next step and acquire feedback from the users, in this case being the other students in the class.
The importance of user feedback is a critical component to the overall process of creating a meaningful product. Feedback provides valuable insight on design flaws, and these opinions from an outside perspective widen our ability to think of new ideas to make improvements to our app. After prototyping our app, it was necessary to take a step back and revisit the creative stage making use of the feedback given to us.
we compiled a document that listed all of the feedback we were given and realized that there were many things that needed improving, specifically the functionality of some features in our app. Many users commented on our need to improve certain design flaws, such as adding on to our event features, which admittedly had not been polished out at the time. Others had different ideas, including removing the “add event” button completely, or adding more buttons and options for the user.
We chose our main color as green, because most of our team members love the color green. Also, green represents health and we hoped our app will bring both physical and emotional health to the senior people as well as their family members. For our home page, there are basically four functions: Calendar to schedule the meeting, Memories to view the past events, Tree to add family members and Settings to set the custom options.