To start off our new IXD303 project focusing on healthcare, our group decided to create a miro board as this would creatively allow us to develop different points of interest during this ideation stage. For the first few weeks, we conducted a collaborative group session where our team of four got together and created, shared and engaged in different ideas and concepts. This is one of the first times I’ve been involved in a collaborative session of this kind.
Initially, we started off brainstorming our ideas before anything else. It allowed us to rapidly put down a bunch of our thoughts and scramble them together in a mindmap format. This allowed us to explore a wide spectrum of health-related qualities and challenges.
Above was the process undertaken by Rachel, she started off brainstorming many different key terms/eras and then arranging them into a contextual and visual mindmap. I extremely love this idea of visual mapping as it creates a more engaging photographic visualization. Rachel looked at the whole spectrum of healthcare from learning to healthcare workers. It was great to see so many ideas.
Additionally, Rachel laid out brief conceptual app ideas that are all diverse and interesting in their own nature.
A few conceptual apps that caught my eye were:
- An app to help families organize the care of a parent
- Checklist app to help motivate people to get stuff done, incorporate rewards
- An app that measures your health based on your family history, and current medical habits to help diagnose and prevent illness.
Another fellow team member also took a similar approach to Rachel looking at various sectors of healthcare and breaking them down. This team member took a look at using both hardware and software in her concept apps. Additionally, it was extremely helpful for everyone to provide links so we can further research these topics in our own time.
Another piece of work conducted by other team members is shown in the picture above. From the initial brainstorming and mind mapping stages, they delved deep into care for family members and laid it out extremely effectively using colour coded tiles. It was extremely helpful to explore different separated factors of care for a family member.
Healthcare & Technology
After we developed our initial mindmaps through brainstorming and sharing different ideas, we decided to research different sectors of healthcare. For me, I decided to look into the actual science and make-up of components, creating a better understanding and awareness for our group of what we can and can’t realistically do. Beneficially, this additional knowledge can spark creative and new ideas that could lead us to create unique products.
Why research this area?
By researching and exploring the capabilities of smart-device-capable technological instruments which can and perhaps will reside on the market (e.g. AppleWatch/Smartphone) We can look at their technology and see how it can relate/benefit an individual or group. Ultimately this gives us a greater and more defined insight into the products, people and situations that our app will be intended for. By conducting this research, it will provide a stronger basis for the functionality of what our intended apps can and cannot do, giving us a more legitimized approach in the real world market. Additionally, this knowledge can help us come up with more solidified ideas.
I started off this process using a linear mind mapping sequence derived from the initial brainstorming process. I divided this process into 5 areas, including technology > people > scenarios (situation/event) > devices (compatibility) > and pros & cons of a certain technology. This allowed me to ultimately spark initial ideas in this area and set a framework to explore how each individual technology can affect a certain age group. Being this early in the ideation process, this is a fundamental part of progressing in a given era.
Through extensive research, I managed to dissect all the hardware and technological components that are found in our devices from wearables, smartphones and VR. I decided to evaluate the most important aspects of our devices and the purposes behind them. I also looked at what technologies are capable of certain devices. For example, the majority of infrared sensors are only available on wearables and not smartphones. This ultimately gave me a better and more precise understanding of what each individual component does.
Progressing onto the next stage, I then used the previous contextual information along with even more comprehensive research and studies to route and explore how these technologies relate and benefit healthcare for an individual.
One area that I found extremely interesting in this research stage was motion sensors and how gyroscopes/accelerometers can be used to monitor and benchmark sporadic movement in patients ultimately detecting and treating neurodegenerative disorders or mental illnesses. Additionally, spirometers (a technology built into microphones) can measure a patient’s airflow to diagnose any abnormal conditions.
Taking a piece from Rachel’s book, I was extremely fond of her method of visual brainstorming as it creates a more profound way of visual ideation leading to new and relevant ideas. I decided to create my own visual healthcare and technology brainstorm shown above by using the initial contextual brainstorms. This allowed me to explore different ways and scenarios technological healthcare could be implemented. In this visual brainstorm, I looked at how the same technologies can benefit people from different age groups and other relevant scenarios. For example, studies have shown that VR in the elderly can be used to treat loneliness or chronic pain. Whereas teenagers it is more likely to help them treat anxiety or depression. Doing this visual brainstorm has allowed me to explore the implementation of technology on certain people and ages.
How has this helped me?
In my opinion, doing this collaborative session has been extremely helpful in allowing me and others to ground ourselves into the world of healthcare and to find a problematic area that can be expanded on. By ideating, sharing and receiving feedback on our ideas, it has allowed me to solidify, redefine and progress many of my app concepts. Additionally, the individual cooperation after the first session was important to dissect in detail different sectors of healthcare.
Through my research into the implementation of technology and healthcare, I have explored a variety of different concepts and scenarios technology can be beneficial to healthcare.
- Monitoration and tracking app for elder stroke victims
- Mental Health app for teenagers
- Checklist app – mood tracker?
- EMG measuring app to diagnose and monitor sporadic movement.
Elderly – no market
Adults – Saturated marrket
Kids – untapped market