Monday, December 24, 2012

Don't be on the fence

We decided to put more emphasis on the dichotomies our issues.  Just as a coin has two sides, a person comes to the kiosk, understand intuitively that there are two sides to the issue, and that he must choose one side.
After much debate, we decided that one side of the pillar will be painted red, and the other green (possibly through small LED lights). The goal is to create a very clear separation between the two sides.
All information related to vote in favor will be on the green, and all related information will be voting against the red side. Each side can see the status of the specific vote voting (on the green side, for example, one can see the votes for the decision). Also, at the bottom of each side will be the step that represents the vote related to this side.

The voter will feel that he is choosing side.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Changes after Speed Dating

We decided to integrate with municipal appearance: we are taking the familiar billboard

and upgrading it

At the top of the pillar, the question/issue will prominently displayed, so that passers-by will be able to understand what is being discussed.
The circular part of the pillar will include objective data that we will present to the residents about the issue: key clip, opinions of different experts and public opinion (comments passers-by send in).
The flat side of the pillar will contain the voting method. On this side of the pillar the resident can see the results so far (by the two diagrams shown on the screen). At the bottom of the pillar there will be two steps, on which a resident can vote with.

The goal is that the user will get to the pillar, see the question/issue displayed, go up and read all the information about the issue, send his opinion to the system using text message, then vote (using his feet, of course) and continue on with the rest of his day in satisfaction.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Mentor Speed-Dating

To get feedback on our preliminary ideas, we had speed dates with mentors.  Each of the six mentors had 5 minutes to listen to our pitch and 5 minutes to give us their opinion and tell us what they think about our idea.

The mentors ranged in areas of expertise, from music to engineering.  Each one had their way of looking at our concept that shaped the path we're going to go on now.

Amiel Shapiro:
He liked the social aspect of our design, and the discussion that will arise through interaction with the kiosk.  He advised us to create a system for comments, where people send in text messages, and comments are colored according to the side they take.  As for the step as a means of voting, he though it wasn't interactive enough.  It was also unintuitive to him, and if we are going to continue with the idea, we need more than a footprint on the floor to signify that stepping is voting.

Liat Segal:
She thinks that it is important that the user get feedback after he voted.  If an application is made, make it so that a notification is received when a decision is reached.

Yair Halevi (Spock):
Since the kiosk could be on a busy street, his thinks it is important to put an emphasis on the visual aspect of the videos.  He thinks the authentication is a viable option, but he suggests doing some two-step authentication with weight or height.

Gilat Parag:
She says the kiosk is not inviting.  Older citizens would not vote because they don't want to "play" (step on the pedal).  She suggests thinking about to to make the metaphor into something more accessible.  The shape needs to be something more elegant, maybe some element of the city that's also informative.  Maybe something three-dimensional with voting on one side and information on the other.
She think that maybe the metaphor for weight should be better used by pushing rather than stepping, since weight is problematic with people.  She thinks we need to find a fun and interactive vote that everyone would be willing to do.
As for the results, she thinks the idea is sort of gimmicky.  It's a good thing to have in front of city hall, but it could be better designed.

Itay Pries:
He thinks the test tubes are nice, but not the main part.  The more important part for him is an app or a website that will keep people updated.

Henit Vitos:
She set us straight with needing to meet with the city.  How much is public opinion really important to them?  Is it a gimmick or do they really use the information?

After the event, the following changes were made in regards to the feedback:

1. We decided to add comments.  we loved Amiel's idea, which game the audience a more thorough look at the issue.  The comments will be sent by text messages, and will appear on the system itself.

2. We decided to give up on the idea of displaying the results in front of City Hall.  We realized we would make better time by focusing on the main features of the system.

3. We decided to set up a meeting with the municipality to find out which procedures exist for public participation, whether they need a product like Stepolls, if there are specific needs/features that we are missing, and if there is a possibility of cooperation with them in the future.

4. We decided to change the way the kiosk looks, and to build something that is more connected to the city. We decided to build the system as a billboard.  A more detailed description will be posted later.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Concept Pitch Video

To prepare for the "speed-dating", our group met up and Lidor pretended we were a mentor.  This is one of his last practice runs.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

First User Study

Our first user study was done to check the potential of the interaction using the step, and to check if people are even interested in voting on municipal issues.  We wanted to see how intuitive voting using one's feet was and what people thought about it.

We met up in Bazel Center, which is in Bazel Street, Tel Aviv, and put a cardboard sign with a question about the location.  Below it was another cardboard sign with the diagrams of the results, and on the floor were two cardboard boxes to simulate the step sensors.

We learned much from this user study:
  1. Although voting by stepping on the block was fun, it was not intuitive.  Most of the people got close and instead of voting using the blocks, said their vote aloud or asked what the blocks on the ground were for.
  2. People do feel that there is a real need for this kind of thing.  People who answered our questionnaire claimed that the feel like they have no way to affect municipal decisions that affect their vicinity.
  3. People were not impressed by the look of the system and they didn't like the voting system.  The users  proposed we change the way we displayed the question.