Final Reflection

This course was very interesting. I had a lot of fun working with the CS students. It was stretching to learn how to communicate and explain ideas to one another. When taking this class I thought that it was going to be pretty different. For example, I thought there were going to be more opportunities to learn how to code and also learn the back ground behind CS. It felt like another studio class. Last semester I worked on a project that was UX design and this project felt very similar to that. But overall, it was a good experience.

The project we worked on was a lot of fun. I love finding problems and not just complaining about them… I love trying to solve them. Especially when it helps a large group of people. I am very proud on my team and all of the hard work we put forth into our project. HOLLER was super fun to research and design for. Also, we got good feedback about the idea from those who would be our user, so that is always very supportive.

The Issue


“Maintenance has a larger role in communication with the
resident than many realize. It’s important for technicians to
communicate in a way with residents so that nobody gets
offended, especially when it’s an issue created by resident error.”

-National Apartment Association

Problem Statement:

How might we improve communication between the landlord, maintenance, and apartment residents in order to ensure mutual responsibility and efficiency between them?

User Journey:

Resident’s Journey:

Search for house/apt
• Submit application/pay fees/deposit
• Meet and go over responsibilities with landlord
• Move in – fill out move-in inspection checklist
• Read over documents to list responsibilities
• Will any maintenance repairs cost money?
• Contemplate whether repair is a responsibility of the landlord
• Call/visit clubhouse, fill out online maintenance request
• Request allows maintenance workers access to residence
• Doesn’t have to be home
• Create a clean work space for maintenance workers
• Analyze repairment
• Leave a written review (doesn’t have to be a 1:1 relationship, review can
embody entire experience)
• Make payment if necessary

Landlord’s Journey:

Search for house/apt
• Search for tenant
• Post opening of house/apt
• Show house/apt
• Background check
• Application /fee
• Get signed lease + make responsibilities clear, receive deposit
• Move-in
• Landlord contacted
• Phone evaluation / troubleshooting (can the solution to the problem be
handled by landlord over the phone?)
• Call help/maintenance
• Typically not handled by landlord unless they are the ones fixing it
• Confirmation of repair
• Pay bill for maintenance
• Check-up on tenant


Search for house/apt
• Inspect apartments
• File records of move-in checklist
• Reads maintenance request
• Prepares for repair with appropriate tools
• At the correct apartment
• Compares request description to the actual situation (entity?)
• Does repair in a timely manner without damaging anything else
• Report back to office of completion

Presentation: Problem-Statement_Colon-Tram-Green-Brizuela

Rachel Colon, Zach Green, Sarah Tram, Xavier Brizuela

Reading 2

Intelligence on Tap: Artificial Intelligence as a New Design Material

It is amazing what people can create and program products to do. The future of AI is very exciting, but concerning. There are many benefits to AI that can improve quality of life and the world however there are many dangers to it if it is abused. Just like the internet it can be a useful and awesome tool but it also has a negative side that many terrible things can be said and exchanged through it. In the article it describes the products being released by Google, Apple, and Amazon as a “Trojan Horse”. Technology can be very deceptive in the way that is looks nice, coveted, and even safe but it really has the ability to be your downfall. It sounds dramatic, but it is somewhat true. Again, in the article, it talks about blackmailing and racism as a result of mishandled information.

UX Design Innovation: Challenges for Working with Machine Learning as a Design Material 

This was an interesting article in realizing how systems and design are linked so well. ML can greatly impact and improve the UX side of design. When incorporated together it has the ability to go farther, faster then if it wasn’t together. However, it does take a lot  of thought and understanding in order to use them together well. Designers talked about its unrealized potential and “black magic” (not understanding the why behind it working). So, I think that as more information comes out about ML, the design world will be able to take a better hold of it.

Machines Learning Culture

Honestly, I don’t know how to feel. Its super cool and interesting how we can program machines to do such emotional things… but it is a bit creepy too. There is so much beauty and emotion and art behind culture and it almost feels wrong to have a machine do it instead of a person. It makes someones hard work become an equation. Its also a point of passion for someone and to make a device have the same knowledge with out the passion behind it is weird.  I don’t like it. Super cool… but I don’t like it. Culture is people… flesh and blood… its not so technical. But, maybe one day it will be this technical and that will be the new culture.

Long Term Project

Our group is interested in:

  • Interaction design with different safety departments to improve response to dangerous situations and improve communication
  • Communication design between parents and their teachers in schools in order to keep track of attendance
  • Interactive learning game for children
  • Activity product and app that those with paralysis can interact with
  • Scavenger hunt that cities can introduce to increase tourism
  • App and device for teachers to keep track of their classes on field trips
  • Device that turns off ability to text and blocks social media in classrooms, can be edited by the app for what the class is allowed to have access to
  • Product that connects to car and registers miles and map to help those that commute for work be reimbursed
  • Mouth piece that communicates conversation to a deaf person and a camera that registers sign language to communicate for a mute
  • Speaker vibrations set that can communicate certain music to a deaf person through the floor and touch
  • Product that improves sleep and keeps track of improvements and set-backs depending on the method
  • Product to calm people with anxiety attacks and notifies a caretaker or friend
  • Product that monitors a person and if they have a seizure it notifies a caretaker or medical help

Rachel Colon, Sarah Tram, Zach Green, Xavier Brizuela


When designing wallets, my partner and I were careful to combine one’s phone with their wallet. When leaving the house most people leave needing their keys, phone, and wallet. By connecting 2 of the objects it makes ones life easier because the phone and wallet are already together. The first prototype depicts a phone case with an attachable coin purse. The second, is a phone case that doubles as a charger and wallet. The third, is a large wallet that allows room to fit the phone within the pocket.

The prototyping process is fun. I allows me to get an understanding of the form and function of the product before the real thing.



Discovering how to design a beautiful user experience comes with research upon research. One can create a wonderful experience along with a service but if their is a simpler way to receive that same service most likely the original experience will be overlooked. Online shopping has escalated substantially because people would rather skip the experience of going to a store because it is inconvenient. Both digital and physical experiences need to be extraordinary for people to go out of their way to take part in them.

However, all products of design should come with a good experience because it ensures trust and positive emotions with the consumer. I liked what the article, Making Sense of Experience, said about designing an experience. A designer must walk a mile in the shoes of the consumer in order to understand and empathize. Design without empathy is worthless. The 4 threads of design are extremely important. However, what is more important is that the designer understands the ‘why’ behind what makes a product good.