DesignPriscilla Ikhena

Squatle

DesignPriscilla Ikhena
Squatle

SQUATILE

A novel interactive platform to find local sport facilities and group workout classes.

Type: Advanced Design Bootcamp, Interaction Design, Video Prototyping.

Role: UX Researcher, Interaction Designer

Timeline: 1 week.

Process: Understand the User, Thematic Analysis, Prototype I, Breakdown Analysis, Design Sprint, Brainstorm, Generative Walkthrough, Prototype II

Soft-skills: Teamwork, Time Management, Disruptive Design, Design Thinking, Storytelling

Hard-skills: Paper Prototyping, Video Prototyping, Story Interviews, Thematic Analysis, Generative Walkthroughs, Participatory Design, Preparation & Conduction of a design sprint

Team: Roosa KALLIONPÄÄ, Cristian ESANU, Marco Giordano MURATORE and Priscilla Nini IKHENA (myself).


OVERVIEW

During a one week HCI Bootcamp for an Advanced Design course, we designed a novel interactive system - Squatle, that enables students on campus to find local sport facilitates and work out classes on campus and in the area. Through user interviews, introspections and participatory design sprints, we identified different pain points. Based on our collected data, we created a video prototype to address the user’s core needs, an iterated on it based on the results of the generative walkthrough.


uNDERSTANDING THE USER

We needed to understand the relationship students have with working out, when they just arrive at a campus, or when they’ve been there for a while. What type of physical activities students are usually interested in, and how likely they were to do these activities in a group.

We then chose to conduct story-and introspective interviews, participatory fun exercises, and distributed questionnaires to all students.

By doing this, we fused standard forms of data collection (questionnaires) with more novel ways of understanding our users in their natural states using sociotechnical principles. Students participated in fun exercises that enabled them let go and share more. This helped broaden our perspectives while brainstorming on solutions.

Some of the exercises we had them do included people playing a get to know each other game in pairs. Some of these pairs were good friends, and others just met each other for the first time. They all heard questions, a question per round, and wrote down their answers on a piece of paper. They then had to reveal their answers at the same time.

Sample questions included: “Would your partner attend a group sports activity with a bunch of strangers?” and “What’s your partner’s favorite sport?”.

These type of exercises and discussions enabled our users warm up, open up and share more with us. They were a lot of fun to conduct, and it also allowed us observe their relationship with working out, working out with friends, being competitive, and working out in social settings

THEMATIC ANALYSIS

After collecting all of this data, we found that the introspective interviews, participatory exercises, as well as the questionnaires, were the most insightful ways to collect data. We then carried out a thematic analysis and found the following pain points to be the most essential to most of the interviewees:

  • Difficulty in discovering these workout facilities and group workout classes - Students often had to go into gyms directly, to inquire about their subscription plans and workout classes.

  • Difficulty with finding gyms close by - In the cases where users found these classes, they were often times too far from them. People wanted to workout in gyms close to them.

  • Difficulty finding classes taught in English. Students who don’t speak and understand French, often had challenges with finding classes in English, or groups of people to do a group sport with.

  • Difficulty finding classes that work for their schedules.

  • Difficulty meeting people to workout together with.

Once we identified these pain points, we went back to our collected data and created three personas to guide us through our design process.

Squatile Personas.png

PROTOTYPING

Based on our personas, and scenarios, we did the first version of the platform, which we made be an interactive table touch screen platform, similar to Microsoft’s Pixel Sense, to enable it be in a central position on campus, where students could use it simultaneously, and meet people that way.

To make this process rapid and disruptive, we chose to do this with paper prototyping.

After receiving feedback on this prototype, we discussed our findings and ideas.

We decided to narrow down our focus for the week, to creating an experience that helped students only find group workout classes/activities - ranging from body pump classes to horse-riding. We made the prototype more interactive, address these core scenarios:

  • Initially exploring the platform and discovering the different types of workout classes.

  • Ability to quickly filter options based on their schedules.

  • Ability to easily book a class, and the class details to their calendars.

  • Highlight the social aspect of using a collaborative touch table.

  • The ability to get a preview into a class by watching a snippet of it and trying out the moves.

  • Ability to filter based on classes offered in a particular language.

  • Ability to filter based on location and proximity.

We also included a mobile version of the prototype to address these core scenarios:

  • Creating social groups of people attending a workout class together, and adding new people to them.

  • Sending requests to other students to book a class.

  • Receiving notifications about and confirming upcoming classes.

  • Rating workout classes.

We created these experiences while following the three sociotechnical principles - instrumental interaction, co-adaptation and situated action.

Please watch the video below to see how we implemented the design.

Reflection

Conducting a participatory design workshop and having sociotechnical principles at hand helped us garner broader insights and conceptualize an interface that felt more personal and efficient. We also learnt to spend less hours discussing, and instead do rapid prototypes to receive feedback and iterate.