Project Team: Luke Buenaventura, Hector Cruz, Florence Lafite, and myself
Product Name: AquaSens Active Water Usage Display & Greywater Capture Unit
My Roles: UX Researcher/Analyst, 3D Modeler, and Product/System Designer
Project Duration: Spring 2018 (1 month)
Design Tools: Hand sketches, AutoDesk Fusion 360, 3D Printing, Photoshop/Illustrator, Google Docs & Slides, Slack
User Testing & Simulation Tools: Google Forms for user surveys, 3D Printing, and simple spatial prototyping

BIG IDEA / Design Challenge:
“How can we increase awareness of in-home water usage and empower people to make positive change in their daily water usage?”

As part of our Product Design and Studio Design classes, we were challenged to create a Smart Environment — a specific location where a system of interconnected products (using IoT and sensors) would solve a social or cultural problem. Each designer on the team was tasked with designing one of the products within the system that would communicate and enhance the functionality of the others. We were told the products should not only work together, but also look like a cohesive family of products.
Team's Project Focus
After some hefty brainstorming and card sorting exercises, my team decided to create a system that would build awareness of water consumption with the goal of increased conservation and potential recycling. We debated about different locations for our target environment and chose to focus on water usage in the family home. We explicitly wanted to bring a family's water usage information forward — visible during tasks and quantifiable — so they could make proactive changes in their daily water consumption routines.

Research & Discovery

We conducted interviews, user surveys, contextual observations, and secondary research.

Water Usage Statistics
• The average household wastes about 180 gallons/week or 9,400 gallons of water annually from household leaks.
• Outdoor water use counts for more than 30% of total household use on average (up to 60% in arid regions).

Key Insights
A lack of awareness, feeling intimidated by technology, need for professional installation, and financial cost are obstacles keeping families from adopting smart home technologies for water conservation and recycling.

User Personas & Scenarios
From our combined research, my team defined three personas that represented our core users. We then created usage stories to provide situational context for their water usage concerns in order to discover solutions for them. 

Rob's Low-Fi Scenario
Both his son in shower and his wife in the kitchen are unaware of the duration of tasks and much water they're using, which results in a lot of water wasted down the drain.
Juliette's Low-Fi Scenario
Juliette is an avid gardener — a regular "Green Thumb" — and she prides herself as being environmentally conscious. She tries to be very diligent about not overwatering and hates wasting water. She wishes she could monitor the conditions in her garden.
Samuel's Low-Fi Scenario
Samuel and his wife have recently moved into a new apartment and they love having a dishwasher and a washing machine/dryer in their unit. But they've been unaware of how much their water consumption has increased. That is, until the DWP bill arrives.

Conceptualization & Ideation Phase

Prototyping Phase
AquaSens empowers users.
With the Bloop family of products installed in your home, you can be more aware of and change your water usage for the better.

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