Cameron's Blog

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(Re)framing and Ideation — February 26, 2019

(Re)framing and Ideation

How might we allow students and advisors to have an efficient, more convenient way to meet with each other during walk-in hours?

Our solution is SmartAdvising

SmartAdvising is a mobile application designed for walk-in advising featuring a virtual waiting room (queue), push notifications, robust FAQ, and the ability to be added to the waiting room by entering FSUID.

What I learned through the ideation process is that there can be a vast array of solutions for the problem with some being more feasible than others. A priority map is a good way to put these ideas to board and help filter out the ideas to select the ones which are both high in feasibility and high in impactful. Sometimes the ideas can also be combined into one. This can be seen for us with the robust FAQ idea and how we combined it to be a part of the mobile application idea. In addition, many of us in our group had different mobile application ideas but with different features. At the end, we were able to combine some of the different features into one app idea.

Some of the issues that came along the way had to do with expenses for our app. In order to place the iOS app on the App Store, we would need an Apple developer license which costs $99 a year. We would need to host a web server as well that has a database to use for the app. This is additional overhead and a web hosting service like Amazon Web Services (AWS) will need to be used which is also not free. This brings the feasibility down a bit but with the assistance of the university, a small fee can be incorporated in the service for the university (not the students) and the expenses can easily be covered.

My favorite activity was sketching the idea and describing the features. The reason being is because I am actually developing this idea and having a wireframe or at least a mental image for the application helps think about how I want the user interface to look like while i’m building the app in Xcode. I aim to have this application finished by the end of the semester!

Gaining Empathy — February 12, 2019

Gaining Empathy

How might we allow students and advisors to have an efficient and more convenient way to meet with each other during walk-in hours.

During the empathy stage, my responsibility was conducting interviews and surveys with different stakeholders. I interviewed 5 students in my department along with 1 student that works for the advisor in the CS advising office. In addition, I had about 9 students fill out a google forums survey in which I created. To carry out my assigned duty, I was fortunate enough to be surrounded by a bunch of Computer Science majors in the majors lab. For the surveys, I randomly asked CS students to answer the survey. For the interviews, I selected 5 students and thoroughly asked them questions and recored their answers in a Google Document. One of the students was the closest I could get to an advisor. He worked in the advisors office and has first hand experience with seeing the long lines during drop-add. I interviewed him and also added his responses to the google doc.

The interviews can be found here:

These are the results from the surveys:

What I learned during the investigation is that 78% of the students surveyed have had to wait in a long lines to see the advisor. But what I find is surprising is that 69% of the students do not make appointments to see the advisor. This has got be thinking that the only problem may not be the long lines, but a miscommunication to students that scheduling appointments to see the advisor is possible. Although scheduling is not possible during drop add week, it can still benefit students knowing that they can schedule in advance to see the advisor and avoid creating traffic at the advising office;

The results of the interviews support this as well and in both the interview and survey, it is pretty clear that most students think the current advising system is inefficient and they agree that it is possible to have a technology solution to this problem.

The process went smoothly in our group. We each did our individual data gathering, observations and research and when we reconvened in class, we shared all of our findings together and worked towards grouping them. Overall, I believe we have done a good job of doing thorough research about our Design Challenge and we have learned to empathize by putting ourselves in the shoes of the stakeholders.

Innovation Frameworks — January 20, 2019

Innovation Frameworks

The three frameworks I have chose to conduct research on are agile thinking, creative problem solving and human-centered design.

Being a Computer Science major, agile thinking immediately grabbed my attention because it sounds similar to agile software development. After doing research, I come to realize that these two concepts are essentially the same thing. I’ve always thought that agile development, in the case of software engineering, was a “method” however, I have come to realize that it is actually a way of thinking. Using the criteria from the innovation website, agile thinking focuses more on product offering and customer experience. This is because agile thinking is focused on the agile values that are also used in software development. These values include flexibility, speed, customer responsiveness, chance and good engineering. It follows product offering because it focuses on providing value in a fast manner and it is focused on customer experience because it aims to be flexible. It must be flexible in that it is adaptable to customer changes and recognizes and corrects mistakes earlier.

Creative problem solving is a four stage model that focuses on brainstorming and converging on ideas to choose the most promising one. From what I have noticed from my research, it acts as end-to end problem solving strategy meaning that it begins with identifying a problem, goal or challenge and results in a formulated plan of action. Because the end goal of creative problem solving is a solution or action to a problem, it seeks to improve product offering with tackling hard problems and challenges.

Lastly, human-centered design is a three phase creative approach to problem solving that centers its focus around the people the solution is being designed for. It seems to improve customer experience and product offering. The process works by building empathy for people the solution is being designed for in the inspiration phase. Next, in the ideation phase, multiple ideas are generated, prototypes are made and feedback is received from customers. Ultimately in the implementation phase, the final solution is brought to life and eventually to market.


Welcome to my blog — January 13, 2019

Welcome to my blog

Welcome to my first WordPress blog! The purpose of this blog is to share my progression of design thinking for innovation throughout Spring of 2019 and hopefully for years forward. As the semester progresses, I will be learning the process of developing products, services, systems and other solutions from areas in which specific needs are discovered. In addition, I will be presenting a tested solution that is ready for development. I will be using this blog to share what I learn and what I discover through my journey in design thinking.

The Journey Begins —
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