CodePath is a 10-week iOS development course, and in the final, enrolled students would require to complete a well-functional iOS application for the overall evaluation. After discussing, my partner and I decided to implement a quote application, which will send inspiring sentences to encourage users daily.
Design a mobile application that sends inspiring quotes to users daily and actually does the motivation works to encourage them to achieve personal goals.
Researcher, competitive analysis, sketing, prototyping, user testing, project management.
Adobe creative suite.
Context: Problem/Goal, Constraints/ Assumptions
Understanding Users: Guerrilla User Research, Competitive Review
Setting the Stage: Requirements, User Flow, Brainstorm
Design: Wireframes, Interactions, Feedback Iterations
Final considerations: Edge cases, Next step, Last thoughts
Receiving inspiring quotes can be encouraging to people sometimes, but it should avoid sending quotes as spam or ignorance from users’ perspective. The accessibility of this mobile application should be smooth and user-friendly for “those thinkers” to have personal space to continue introspection and process their inner thoughts on meaningful quotes.
The goal is to design a mobile sending motivation quotes and help user can freely express their inner thoughts to do introspection with user-friendly accessibility. Further, it can successfully assist users’ self-discipline and to achieve their personal goals.
There are a couple different methods to assist people self-discipline and spark their motivation, and I chose to create a motivation mobile application with planner feature, which supports users to be able to write down their thoughts/deadline/goals on mobile anywhere. Plus, hypothesizing that typing a journey or expressing ideas on mobile would be more flexible for users rather than grabbing a piece of paper and a pen to physical write them word by word.
Assume that users who would like to use this motivated application are with high self-discipline. The target users of MotivateMe will be who desires to be performed in a better way in life.
Assume that users prefer to customize own taste of quotes, and they can either like or dislike every single one. Liking or disliking a quote will assist the algorithm to calculate what types of quotes the user would be more interested in.
Assume that users would leave a comment to the quote that resonates which can support them to do introspection or self-discipline. The comment feature may help users to relieve pressure and express inner thoughts deeply.
Assume that users would appreciate a planner feature for self-improvement. With a planner feature can drive them to achieve personal goals more clearly.
Assume that users would like to review their previous favorite quotes. and well-organized categories. The design should categorize those favorite quotes well, and users are able to easily search for the specific one.
Listing assumption with uncovered questions, I needed to interview users to know what they are actually thinking and behaviors. For example, I assume that users who prefer receiving motivation quotes, tend to have habits of writing planner. I need to clarify if my assumption is valid and ensure the direction is right for designing the mobile application further. I quickly interview a couple of people I know who do personal schedule. Asking questions like, “please walk through how you do planner habit”, “what is your way to get motivated when you don’t feel like doing anything,'' or “how do you think reading inspiring quotes to motivate self? ” I was able to nail down user behavior, needs, and goals to synthesize them into user types below.
After the quick interview, I categorize three types of “planner”: The memorizer, The practical doer, and the mix recorder.
“I don't do either mobile or paper planner that much to help myself remember the deadline. I just grab the most convenient way for me at the moment to memorize the to-do list and finish them.”
These memorizers only do planners when they are extremely busy with life, and most of the time their brains will memorize the priorities rather than spending extra time to type them out. They perform efficiently in life, and if they need to remember the important stuff, they tend to choose the most convenient way to do it based on the moment. In short, they need a simple and clear wireframe to let them easily naturally take notes. Simplicity, ease, and efficiency are the first elements they need.
Memorizers will choose the best to remind themselves. For instance, when they are sitting at a desk, grabbing a piece of paper and write down initial stuff what they need to complete will be the first choice for them to do the planner. On the other scene, While walking on the street, something important comes out unexpectedly, memorizers would pull out their phone from pocket and type them on mobile note application. What is the most convenient will be their first choice.
THE PRACTICAL DOERS
“I write the deadlines in my calendar to help me visually prioritize what I need to do first. I refer to it a lot throughout the day. pretty much writing in my calendar gives me an urgency to do it. I can just tackle them in order. When I'm not feeling like it I won't do it. I motivate myself by setting smaller tasks to complete when I want to tackle it.”
Practical doers also perform efficient in their life, yet they more frequently write planners to remind themselves compared to memorizers. They also believe listing the deadline on a mobile device is faster and timesaving rather than a paper calendar. They love to tackle those deadlines in order, which gives them a sense of being motivated. To conclude, they want to visual prioritize their schedule and list things in order, so they need the wireframe easily to be able to organize priority order and do editing for any deadline updates.
The interviewer, practical doer, mentioned grabbing his planner from the backpack and flip it on the right page sometimes is a pain, and he rather just typing draft deadlines on device for visually prioritizing schedule.
THE MIX RECORDERS
“I use both paper planners and apps. Usually I'll put down my daily schedule on mobile calendar. On the other hand,the details of schedule and personal deep thoughts would be written down on paper planner.”
The mix recorders use both mobile and paper planners ,and each of them has a slightly different purpose. Handwriting on paper planner assist them to think deeper, more creative and clarify their mind. On the other hand, typing daily planner for them on a mobile device is more like a quick reminder for them. However, sometimes, they made comments on their digital planner to check out what they have done in a day. The mix recorders may need a digital planner which they can flexible either add a comment or creating a simple planner depends on the task they are working on.
Mix recorders mention that they enjoy both versions of planner, the digital and the traditional. Either quickly typing on mobile or writing details with hand on paper, both of them are helpful to process their minds and clarify the plans.
I also quickly viewed other planner mobile applications and physical planners that interviewers have mentioned during interviews:
Notes App from iPhone, Things 3 App, and Notes App from android phone, and paper passion planner.
This processing helps me to understand more competitors’ strengths and weaknesses, then it gives me a better sense of how to start designing the wireframe for different categories of users.
I made a general list of the processing of how users make planners. Also, keep it in mind how this app keeps motivating and efficient to them. I point out a couple of requirements for visually prioritizing a planner and walked through a user flow of it.
During the end of this interview, I asked people about their opinions of reading quotes to get motivated, and the result turned out not many people will do it frequently. Reading inspiring quotes sometimes does the work to motivate readers , but compared to general relaxation methods, users don’t rely on it that much. To remind myself the goal of the project is to create an iOS mobile application inspiring people by sending quotes, and to consider the practicality of assisting users archiving personal goals, I think the best choice is to make the feature of sending quotes as the secondary need and the planner feature as the primary need in this project.
THE NEW GOAL
Design a mobile application that inspires people with a planner and sending quotes features to and actually does the motivation works to encourage them to achieve personal goals. Further, it can successfully assist users’ self-discipline and to achieve their personal goals.
Setting up the new goal of MotivateMe and walking through the user flow, I began to see where each type of users converged and diverged in their path to do a planner. Initial ideas began to form based on these needs:
IDEA 1: COMBINATION OF MINIMALIST QUOTE AND PLANNER FEATURE
The memorizers need a quick and simple way to create a planner. They may need a minimalist wireframe design of planner and able to see all of the deadlines in once they haven’t completed yet. A listing style of planner feature, which presenting deadline in priority orders, do keep things simple for users. The simple quote and planner would be the essential.
Combination of quote and planner feature
IDEA 2: DETAIL FEATURE
The mix recorders need a flexible planner, which they are able to add detail anytime they want. The detail feature will assist those mix recorders to remember details of the to-do list.
IDEA 3: MOVING PRIORITY FEATURE
Since the practical doers value so much to visually prioritize their own deadlines, a feature being able moving deadlines around easily would be their needs. So they don't have to delete and restart another planner to change the order.
Planner'detail feature & switch order feature
IDEA 4: DEFAULT SETTING, UNCOMPLETED TASKS
The memorizers and practical doers would write a planner when they need to remember important tasks for their convenience. It means they do it when they need instead of doing it every day. The time for the planner feature should be flexible and those uncompleted tasks should automatically be saved for the next day. So that, they don't need to restart a planner to keep track of completing their deadlines on time.
IDEA 5: COMMENT FEATURE
To continue the idea of detail features, mix recorders like to express their thoughts on paper to clear their minds. Some interviewees also mentioned that they randomly read a quote that they resonate with, and then they would like to write once a while. They may need a feature of writing down their thoughts on the quote inspired them to assist self-discipline.
Quote's comment feature
I quickly iterated based on user feedback and assumptions. This wireframe focuses more on the planner feature. I tended to design the wireframe with minimalist style and ignored the complicated schedule timeline. The primary style of these wireframes keeps look straightforward with a single editing button.
ADDING PLANNER FEATURE
Each deadline is listed by orders and visually showing the priority.
Add planner feature
SWITCHING PRIORITY FEATURE
It also is able to switch orders with easily swiping gestures instead users need to delete the whole planner to rearrange the order. -The idea to keep planners well-organized and visually prioritize deadlines.
Switching priority feature
ADDING PLANNER DETAIL FEATURE
In addition, in order to satisfy mix recorders’ demand,that sometimes they prefer to type down more detail for their planner, I designed a flexible detail feature that users can include additional information for each deadline to prevent missing.
Add planner detail feature
COMPLETE PLANNER FEATURE
Once users completed each detail, they can check on them individually. The deadline will be gone until they complete all of the detailed events.
Complete planner feature
COMMENT QUOTE FEATURE
Next, the quote can be expanded, and users can like or comment on it. The purpose is to let users freely express their thoughts on the quote they resonate with and remind how it can motivate themselves.
Comment quote feature
After the quickly interview, the result of users’ feedback against my original assumption that sending quotes will motivate people, and reset the goal of this mobile application later on. It turned out I focused on understanding the planner behavior in this researching to drive users’ self-discipline. (Before approaching the series of questions about planner habit, I asked users what drives them to complete tasks? The deadline and a sense of emergency do the work to drive their self-discipline.) During the interview process, I was surprised that in general people prefer to quickly record deadlines on mobile rather than writing them down on paper planner due to convenience. Based on user feedback and assumptions. This wireframe focuses more on the planner feature. I tended to design the wireframe with minimalist style and ignored the complicated schedule timeline. The primary style of these wireframes keeps look straightforward with a single editing button.
If writing processing is a way to clarify thoughts in mind and typing deadline on mobile is a way to remember - the writing behavior falls into a mental model of “thinking”, and the typing behavior falls into a mental model of “memorizing” Users in thinking mood needs to clarify information in detail and organize them with orders. On the other hand, users in memorizing mood need a medium to assist them by reminding them. It makes sense why users prefer their mobile planner to be simple and quick.