Interaction & Service Designer Based in Oslo, Norway
Kulu: Mobile-based transitioning app for Akerhus University Hospital
The Norwegian Research Council and the Youth Council at the Akerhus University hospital collaborated for research and design of technology for young people with chronic health challenges. Kulu app is a personal tracking tool to simplify and support the transition process from pediatrics to adult medicine.
This project was a freelance engagement where I worked as an interaction designer as part of a team of two, responsible for information architecture and interaction design of the app. Our work involved translating and operationalizing the data provided by the research team into an actionable design. As the field research was not carried out by us directly, we worked in close collaboration with the research team members during the entire process, to keep the outcome grounded in the insights from field studies and co-design workshop. I did one iteration of visual design as well for the app to be used in one of the workshops.
We were provided with the brief and access to the research insights to design a single app for users to track their medical engagements as well as moods over a period of time.
Mapping user intents behind tracking
We mapped the insights and quotes from the interviews to outline the potential use of this application for the users. We had no direct access to the users, so we were dependent on the research team to involve the users during the design process. We created visuals depicting the condensed form of our understanding to share with the users during the co-design workshops.
The challenge of linking rigid and fluid data points
One one hand, medical appointments are rigid, specific and time-bound, whereas moods are more tacit and subjective. This data contrast had to be resolved through design. Rather than a unified approach, we used contextual hints while keeping the two data views separate, building up to a single organic view of each day for the user.
Tracking ephemeral data: Moods
The research team insisted on the association of colors with moods based on their insights. This part of the app went through several iteration cycles. The challenge was to retain the subjective fluidity of keeping the log of one’s mood. We built what we call - MoodShot, associating moods with the parts of the world the user notices and registers on a given day. The user can choose to click a picture representing their day or mood or a moment and add the simple color-based mood emoticons to create a MoodShot. The app allows for color personalization as well.
These underlying approach formed the basis the IA's and detailed wireframes for the application. Additionally, we made several co-design workshops based iterations before finalizing the design.
Visual design for co-design workshops
Our involvement in the project was limited to providing wireframes for further app development. However, as the research team was conducting co-design workshops with the users, we created one visually rendered version as well. We focused on creating a simple, and subtle language using the metaphor of a personal conversation.
Kulu intends to support the user manage and reflect on their day not by imposing positive picture but by allowing a personal space to create a true and comforting one.
"Our senses are driven by action and seek patterns. Our picture of the world at any instant is shaped by what we want to
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