My First Blog Post

A Hackathon with Surrey County Council

“We should all dream, share our dreams, then go out and make them happen”

— Richard Branson

Beginning with the course we were set a task before any of the modules even started, which at first made me feel quite nervous. The induction week turned out to be very interesting not only did we receive information about our modules but we were given fun activities; one in which me and my classmate won a box of galaxy chocolate hmm yum!

We did a Hackathon with Surrey County Council, the session was for two days and the task was to work in groups, something I have always enjoyed is team work. I believe when working in a team it is important to have good communication skills as well as empathy and involving all the team members to achieve the same goals. Working in a group not only helped me to build up my confidence, but also decreased my fear of starting a postgraduate course.

 The first step of the task set was to work in groups and firstly create a persona which was quite fun as each group created different personas. In my team we worked well as we had many thoughts and ideas that were shared.

The second stage of the task was to identify the problems that may be faced in the community by the persona we had created. These problems could be anything from depression, loneliness or even being unemployed. When we had the problems listed, we were then asked to give solutions and again this could be volunteering for example.

The third stage of this project was to create either a product or service, we created a service which we had then presented to the Surrey County Council and they had given suggestions for us to improve our idea as well. This stage was really important as we had to make sure we listened carefully and noted their suggestions.

The final stage was to create a poster which we had used to pitch our presentation on the final day. At first, I felt quite nervous before pitching our presentation, but as we started speaking to the members of Surrey County Council, it turned out to be quite fun and a great experience. We had to repeat our pitch as we presented to different people, by repeating our pitch I feel we became more and more confident. We were able to answer the questions in a fluent manner. I mean practice helps a lot and makes it easy to pitch/ present, I guess. Planning our pitch really helped us because we took turns to speak and everyone knew when to speak.

Overall the experience was great not only had I made new friends from different backgrounds but also a good learning experience to begin the course with.

Looking back to one of my favourite quotes as shown above by Richard Branson. Sharing our dreams or even ideas is something we should always do, whether is making a difference to the community or fulfilling your dream.

The Design Museum Trip!

I am not really fond of visiting Museums, I just really go whenever we had School trips, but this was the best Museum I have ever seen and it was really related to me I feel. I will explain why I felt it was related to me as I write my blog.

My first thought of The Design Museum as we entered was not very interested but as I saw the innovative ideas around me and the crowd of people, I felt like there was something I yet did not know about.

I learnt so much out and we did not want to leave at all especially me I really wanted to buy something but the things i liked were kind of expensive aha!

What I have learnt that nothing is impossible! Any idea is do able and you do not need a new idea to be successful you can redesign a product or service. Anyway, we had a small task to do when visiting the Museum. It was to pick the top three designs we liked as a group and create a presentation to talk about with our classmates. As well as giving reason to why and how might we questions.

We selected three designs that were healh related:

Elvie Breast Pump

The Elvie Breast pump is designed for mothers. It solves many issues one of the main one is breast feeding in public places. Other areas it solves is that there is no noise, its wireless and cordless. The mother would not need to change her clothes to fit the pump. It is different as it is smart technology to address difficulties of breast feeding in public places which has an yy to use to track and check. There are variety of specifications such as its silent, wearable, tracks pump history and milk volume.

Lia Pregnancy Test

The Lia Pregnancy Test is designed for pregnant women. It is environmentally friendly and holistic, flushable and discreet 0% plastic. The designed has not been changed in the past for 30 years. In previous pregnancy test they were 100% plastic and one million kilograms of nonarable waste in US landfill. This design makes pregnancy much more private and as it is flushable its not visible when thrown away. The cost is less than the other pregnancy tests too.  

Raptor Hand

The Raptor Hands is designed for people who are unable to afford high priced artificial limbs and for children who are physically impaired. The customable design makes its low cost and used by 3D printing.

Raptor Hand

When presenting in front of the group and watching other groups present there was something, I really liked was the Alter Ego which is something that would be great for my disabled brother who has cerebral palsy. The Alter Ego is a device which is put on the ear and touched to the chin and it’s kind of like google and Alexa but you just have to think it and not say the question.  

Overall the experience was great and would love to go to The Design Museum again!

The Toilet Journey!

It was one of the interesting and unusual Design Thinking class we had and very different type of experience which was new to me.

For this session in class we worked in teams of three, in which each member of the group had different roles one was a robot (that was me for my group). The robot was only told what to say or do, which meant he or she was not allowed to talk without being instructed. This was quite difficult for me. Anyway the other two members roles were one of them was a mute person and the other was a visually impaired person.

The task that was set for us was to take a journey to the toilet and back to the class safely. It seemed quite straightforward however, it wasn’t as easy as it sounds like. We had to find a way to communicate before we left the class to start the journey but we did not create any communication signals as we thought it will be quite simple and straightforward. On the other side the journey was alright I guess but communication was not as good we expected it to be during the journey going to the toilet, but coming back there was a communication created and it had made the journey a better experience for all of them members. The three members had different experiences to one another, this was because they had different roles to one another. As for being the robot I felt quite bored and useless as first.  Afterwards as I was being asked questions, I felt I had a good and maybe an important role in the group. Each of the members situation was quite different to each other, as the blind was not able to see and the mute and robot were able to see their surroundings. The mute was not able to speak but could hear and use their limbs for guiding the blind. Finally, the robot could see hear but could not act out anything without being told or asked to speak.

When we came back to class, we had to map out our experience using An empathy map is a collaborative tool teams can use to gain a deeper insight into their customers (SolutionsIQ, 2019) . It was created by Dave Gray.

I haved added a youtube link for you to watch on ‘how to Empathy Map’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9HwpR3Njq00

On the empathy map, there is different categories such as smell, feel, think or say. Below is a diagram of our empathy map.

Each of the members had different experiences on how they felt, the person who was blind said she felt “scared” and she mentioned the sounds she heard for example “air” as they doors opened. As for me and the mute person we could see so we felt that the blind person in other groups, as well as in our group was not being helped always. Being the robot, I felt that it was difficult in a way to get past other groups.  One thing that the blind person mentioned that she had trust issues so in order to clear the issues she would ask questions on the way back for example “how long left to reach.”

I believe that communication is important in any and every situation. The reason for this without communication you’re not only able to helps you to understand how to listen and understand others (Business.qld.gov.au, 2019).

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