LONELINESS WEEK 05 | Macro UX
11/02/21–25/03/21 (6 weeks)
📃Brief: Design a way to mitigate the effects of loneliness.
🤝Group Members: Damul Yang, Huijie Xiong (Rikkie), Maria Carolina Séves, Sue An, Yiwei Han (David).
👁🗨External Partner: R/GA — Zoha Zoya, Matt Chokshi.
New online research has given us some inspiration: London is one of the loneliest countries in the world; doing acts of kindness can help ease loneliness. Combining these two points, we came up with an idea: to raise public awareness of urban loneliness and to mitigate the negative filter of loneliness by spreading messages of goodwill and acts of kindness.
We wanted to go out and test the feasibility of replacing the previous AR effect with a simple transparent board that would allow the participant’s recordings to ‘blend in’ with the urban context. A design idea of an experimental and investigative nature was born: a transparent public emotion sharing board.
Physical AR — Materialized Experimental Process
The results were not good, most pedestrians were reluctant to participate. Damul later discussed the shortcomings of our design idea by actively inviting pedestrians. We found out two main reasons: The purpose of the design itself is not clearly demonstrated; pedestrians need to engage in more complex interactions in order to participate.
Based on the experience of the failure, we refined and upgrade the idea. We thought about how to hook passers-by and simplify the act of their need to engage with the public installation. During the group discussion, I asked what would happen if we replaced the transparent board with a human shape. This would not only attract the attention of the pedestrians but would also convey their message to the “transparent lonely person”.
We finally decided to create a 3D model and devise a very simple act for the participants to complete — dropping the ball.
Final Idea — “Transparent Human” & Prototyping
Due to time constraints, we decided to make a quick rough version to learn how to make and test it quickly. After an afternoon of selecting materials and making them, Damul and I finally finished the transparent ‘Junior David’ model, the R/GA partner appreciated our idea but suggested that whether we could combine it more closely with the young people.
Next Move — Reconnect with Digital World
So we reverted to digital products and technology, created an Instagram account and decided to spin our idea into a social campaign: 1. first collect stories of lonely people through social networks. 2. then choose a loneliness story to spread and make a model. 3. post hint images about the location of lonely people to attract people to find them and give them help.
Lloyd, M. (2013). Art with Mrs. Kennedy: Art Club- Packing Tape Sculptures. [online] Art with Mrs. Kennedy. Available at: http://artwithmrswithem.blogspot.com/2013/02/art-club-packing-tape-sculptures.html [Accessed 1 Apr. 2021].