Screens of Good

Phase 1 — Define

  • There is actually a test to see if you have cell phone addiction. It was created by a PhD from the University of Connecticut. I took the test and scored a 76. According to my score I have, “Moderate nomophobia. You’re pretty attached to your device. You often check for updates while you’re walking down the street or talking to a friend, and you often feel anxious when you’re disconnected.” Afterwards, the results suggested a “Digital Detox” where you would ditch your devices, and do certain daily tasks instead. This is a challenge put on by WNYC’s publication of New Tech City.
  • Social media apps are designed to hook you. According to the article, “Instagram has created code that deliberately holds back on showing users new ‘likes’ so that it can deliver a bunch of them in a sudden rush at the most effective moment possible — meaning the moment at which seeing new likes will discourage you from closing the app.”
  • Smartphones and slot machines have scary similarities. They both give you something called intermittent rewards, that irresistible feeling of unpredictability.
  • Smartphones are altering our brains and they can actually decrease concentration levels overtime.
  • The constant checking of the phone 24 hrs a day has been linked to anxiety, sleep disturbance, stress, poor academic performance, and decreased physical activity
  • 46% of people said that their they couldn’t live without their smartphone
  • 35% of adults owned a smartphone in 2011 compared to 64% in 2014
  • 86% of undergraduate students owned a smartphone in 2014 (an increased from 76% in 2013)
  • studies so far have shown that compulsive use of smartphones may lead to psychological disorders.

Phase 2—Research

Phase 3 & 4 — Design/Evaluate

We all talked about different options of what we could create for our paper prototypes. We each ended up creating our own and tested them with ourselves and others to decide on the final.

Phase 5 — Reflect

For the final prototype we chose was Alexis’ app that links other digital accounts and suggests that you reduce your screen time without making it explicit with a timely notification. The notifications the app gives you are always other options of things you could do that you would hopefully do without looking at your phone. We believe this app is organized, personal, in-depth, and user-friendly. If it were put into production it would be easily usable. During the creation and testing the biggest lesson we learned as designers is detail orientation. It is our job to think of the solution before the user even recognizes the problem. Apps that users enjoy most have a lot within them without being overwhelming on the surface. This is why we chose Alexis’ app for the final, because her prototype exudes all of these qualities, and all of the user testers liked the ease of use, but also enjoyed all of the details that went into the app. We believe on a scale from 1 to 10 that we deserve a 10. We had multiple ideas that we explored in depth and to completion, and even though we chose one for our final we believe every single on of our ideas could potentially be a produced app. All of the ideas that we had were real solutions, and wouldn’t just work ‘in theory.’ We think this shows extreme awareness of usability and user centered design and are all great examples of the information ideals and processes that we have learned throughout this course.




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