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Designing an Interface: Idea Selection and Presentation

Brainstorming Interface Ideas

You will need to decide on an idea for an interface. It could be a web site, a mobile app, an appliance touch screen, etc. Don’t make your idea too broad. Focus on something that solves a problem or fills a need.

Another approach is to take an interface that is very poor and reimagine it.  Your project idea needs to be sufficiently complex to show your ability to design multiple screens and interaction flows as the user carries out a small number of tasks. For that you need to do the following:

1.Brainstorm ideas. You might want to use a free, online mind-mapping tool like SpiderScribe or Mindomo (Optional). Here are some questions you might want to consider to focus your brainstorming:

a.Think of a service you or your friends use. What’s the biggest avoidable hassle (inconvenience) customers must endure?
b.What happens in your daily routine that is complex or confusing? How could you simplify it?
c.Think of a domain that interests you: shopping, elementary education, exercise, social media, etc. What possibilities are there to do something new or better? What might be redesigned for newer or different technologies like smart phones or gaming platforms?
2.Narrow your choices down to one idea.
3.Write a brief description of the problem, including the following main points:
a.The Problem
b.Why It’s Interesting
c.Main Users Affected
d.The guidelines and principles violated by the problem
e.Current Solutions (if any)
f.Make a list of the needs/goals/tasks you observed (at least 10). Group and organize this list as appropriate.

Prepare a presentation of your project idea demonstrating all of the following:

1-Background: Introduce the idea of project you chose including problems with existing interface and its possible impact.
2-Problems: Describe limitations with existing interface
3-Summary of Work: Explaining what your implemented changes to interface accomplish, how you designed it, and what possible improvements were brought in comparison to problems you listed earlier.
4-Features: Describe of the main interface elements and features you implemented
5-Reviewer Testing: Describe briefly the reviewer evaluation results as you compiled those in your report including all problems identified.
6-Evolution: Describe how your implemented interface makes the system better from perspective of usability and user satisfaction. List all improvements experienced by reviewers or other sources who evaluated your interface. Include graphics to show before and after.
Conclusion: Briefly discuss the conclusion and any future improvements you can suggest about interface of your selected system. Address problems that remain and what your next steps for the product might be if you were to continue further working on same system.

1-Make sure to practice with your prototype so that you can operate it effectively and not waste time. Doing several practice runs or walkthroughs will help you identify missing pieces and dead ends.

2-It would be a good idea to do this testing in groups. One person can be the expert tester while another works the prototype and the others take notes. Then, everyone can switch roles until all participants have been experts and had a chance to test their designs.

3-Review the feedback you got from your reviewers.

4-Write a summary of the prototype testing results describing what worked and what did not. In addition to a list of specific changes you want to make to your interface. This summary must include;

a.Average subjective satisfaction of reviewers
b.Number and details of terms/metaphors unfamiliar to reviewers
c.Number and details of action sequences considered confusing lengthy by reviewers
d.Number and details of inputs/outputs not understood by reviewers
e.All principles and guidelines satisfied through your interface.
And you can add any further items of interest from review activity.

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