Pollutracker is an app that uses sensor and cloud technology to help asthma users prevent an asthma attack from occurring by alerting them the pollutants they are sensitive to, to ultimately prevent an asthma attack from occurring.
Role: UI, systems and design research.
Process: choose chronic condition to research on, design research, define problem, create user profile and map out caregiver system, map out feedback system, establish opportunities, create product service ecology, narrow down solutions, conceptual model, key screens
Time Taken: 3 Weeks
addressing a need
I interviewed a person who has a chronic (on-going) health condition and designed a sensor which can monitor body chemistry painlessly and connect to the cloud. I also created a use case where I designed the present and future states of the person's condition, as well as opportunities to help mediate the condition. The question I wanted to answer throughout this project is: How can sensor technology be integrated into people's live to help them and their caregivers better manage chronic conditions?
A quote my interviewee Joe said when he encounters an asthma attack. This is important as it presents a problem that can potentially be solved with more awareness. The question is about implementing a process into Joe's daily life that is intuitive and painless.
understanding the basics
I researched information on asthma to have a better understanding of Joe's condition.
who am i designing for?
I interviewed Joe and created a user profile as well as modeled his care-giving network to have a better understanding of when and how Joe receives support for his condition. This would then give me a better idea of the kind of product I could design for Joe's asthma. I also created a journey map (or schedule) of how Joe manages his condition during a week. I included doses and timing of mediation, food, exercise and interactions with caregiver.
defining the problem through an Automatic Feedback System
I modeled the current state of Joe's condition in terms of maintaining homeostasis. There is a feedback loop in the current state in which Joe has to obtain medicine to control his asthma.
Depending on how severe Joe’s asthma is, he has to see the doctor every time he has a flare up, making it very inconvenient for him to go to new places.
exploring the solution through a Product Service Ecology
This is the future state, where I propose and design an product-service ecology the integrates the product and services used to help Joe and his caregivers better manage his well being. The main elements of this ecology include how the potential product, a sensor and app will be able to help Joe manage his asthma while keeping in contact with his caregivers.
The solution aims to facilitate Joe’s relationships with his caretakers and meet their goals. For Joe, the product heightens his awareness of his environment to enable him to prevent an attack. For his caretakers, it is a way to monitor Joe’s condition and provide feedback to alleviate it remotely.
User Conceptual Model to understand potential interactions
I created a user conceptual model of the app as well as outlined key user tasks I would want in the design. There were many features I wanted to incorporate into the app but instead of designing for features, I narrowed it down to just four (highlighted in red). This is so that the app is more focused in what it should do (tracks and alerts the user of pollutants) and is tailored more towards Joe, rather than focusing on trying to alleviate asthma as a whole.
I would want to think of friendlier UI as based on the feedback I received from peers as the colors are "dull" or "murky" and might be perceived in a negative light by potential users. I will test it with users to ask them how they feel when they look at the screens and how that would affect their overall perception of using the app.
By having a in-depth understanding of Joe, I was able to narrow my focus on creating a product that would alleviate his main pain points with asthma and create awareness to empower Joe in his day to day life. By also designing the product with Joe's caregiver group in mind, they will able to proactively watch over Joe and help him.