Bringing the Outdoors in: 500 words

I was excited to begin the ‘Bringing the Outdoors in’ module as it sounded complete different to my previous field project. I could clearly see how I could benefit from the module as is was based around design development and human centred design which is essential in product designer. We were told that you must first gather inspiration, and then use that inspiration to begin ideation, and then implement the ideas in order to solve the issue. We were on the look out for inspiration on the Storey Arms trip. Whilst caving, Orienteering and Caving there were may health and safety issues which could be implicated, such as;

  • Strong water current
  • Rising water levels
  • Domino effect when people fall
  • Unstable walking surfaces
  • Slippery surfaces
  • Uneven surfaces
  • Temperature shock
  • limited visibility
  • Fitnes
  • Restrictive clothing
  • Large heights
  • Low ceilings
  • Rocky surfaces (more of an issue when needed to crawl)
  • Tight gaps
  • Navigation

Clara held a first aid workshop on the Tuesday after the trip, I am not first aid trained so it was essential in order for me to be educated on whats already out there. She also went through the stages you would have to go through in certain emergencies, and when it is necessary to contact emergency services. Following this me and my partner Sam did some quick idea generation, finishing with 100 ideas that answer the brief in some way. Next following session we narrowed down these ideas to five, after doing some market research and intense consideration, these ideas were;

  • An easy access food pouch
  • A slim head torch
  • LED bred crumbs
  • Anxiety helper
  • Friends App

We sketched up each of these ideas and decided on a final design which we could them prototype, test and develop. Once these prototypes were completed we took them back to the Brecon Beacons and immersed them in a natural environment, and got people to interact with the prototypes whilst asking them questions and receiving feedback which we recorded. This was very useful and gave us information for further developments.

On the following Thursday  we took our prototypes into PEL, using panoramic images that were taken on the two trips as the background setting. We also took a trip to Taff Trail and gathered leaves, stones and sticks to making the environment more realistic since it enhanced the participants, touch, smell, sound, and sight. We also played background sound which helped significantly.

We had a mixed reaction from the people we immersed in the environment with out prototypes. Some seemed to take it as a joke, some seemed too uncomfortable to get an accurate reading from but others seemed interesting by the concept and gave us some useful feedback.

We developed out prototypes using the feedback collected from the trip and PEL and then got a different group of people to test them in PEL for the second time. Once we had gathered this feedback we implemented it for the last time before the final presentation.

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