In my last blog post, I spoke about the idea of a disposable app and in project four, I decided to work on a real-life example of what a disposable app is by conducting a design inquiry.
In this project, I designed JAPA: A disposable application for onboarding immigrants from Nigeria. Japa is a mobile application that aims to ease the transition of a new immigrant moving from Nigeria by providing all the basic information needed and also providing a sense of home in this very uncertain and hard time in the user’s life.
To get started with my inquiry, I had a set of four research questions that I hoped this research would provide answers to at the end of the inquiry and I used a combination of questionnaires and interviews to conduct this survey.
As part of my research, I created a 15-question questionnaire and sent it out to my target audience; Nigerians in the diaspora. I also held interviews with a group of 4 of my friends from the same target audience pool. The responses from the research gave a lot more insights into the what my target audience would have wanted when they moved to a new country themselves.
After reviewing these research results, I went on to further create a mindmap which would encompass everything I had understood from the questionnaires and the interviews conducted. When creating this mindmap, I made notes of the responder’s needs and also acknowledged the fact that 26.7% of the responders still did not feel comfortable in their new country.
The outcome of the mindmap was a detailed mobile application.
Reflecting on the results of this research led me to more insights into the process of moving and settling into a new country than I had before. It was an emotional process, from talking to my friends during the interviews and them telling me how much they still feel displaced in their new land to them telling me how they would have loved to have a platform like Japa to help them manage the culture shock when they moved.
All in all, the research buttressed the need for Japa and I hope to be able to continue going forward.
When I came up with that term, it felt like a weird summary of everything I had been trying to understand about the term Supernormal. But before I go on to tell you about how this theory became, let me tell you what a disposable app is.
A disposable app is an app that becomes digitally disposable once it has served the needs of the user.
This was a challenge to the idea of supernormal in the digital space
My name is Nimi Martins I am a Product Designer with a background in Building Construction and I have been working as a digital product designer for the last several years. I have a focus on creating user-centred designs that solve real-life problems. I am fascinated with understanding human psychology and figuring out ways to create useful, helpful and impactful products.
I am also interested in critical design thinking that leads to actionable resolutions.
Keywords for your practice/research:
User-centred, Critical Design Thinking, Design Futures, Understanding how users behave and why they behave that way (Design Psychology) and Solving real-life problems through digital products.
JNR was designed by myself and two of my classmates: Rhebsa and Jocelyn. The goal of this project was to create a service that helps our classmates and solves a real-life problem in a unique way, using our skills and abilities and the result was JNR.
I always used to say, “finding an illustration or icon takes up half my work as a designer”. As a non-illustrating designer, finding illustrations and icons are a great hassle, Most illustrations are made by impersonal AI that pushes out mathematically calculated illustrations that never seemed to portray exactly what I need them to, so we created one that did just that. JNR is a product that creates illustrations from reference photos by humans for humans.
We believe technology should be created to help humans and not replace humans.
Getting a custom Illustration from JNR has 3 main steps,
- Upload the reference image
- JNR shares this reference image with our Illustrator and we create the custom illustrator in our signature style. During this step, we created a game that allows you to pay with a miniature game while waiting for your image to be created
- Lastly, you download the custom illustration made.
My role in the team
I designed the website for the platform that allowed the team’s talents to be shown to the public. When designing the website, I wanted it to be welcoming and fun, also easy and straightforward to maneuver without getting lost in too many pages.
I wanted the goal to be very clear to the user hence the bold CTA in the middle of the hero section to call the attention of the user.
The website is a 1-page website with Figma with the prototyped flow to provide a real feel of how the user will go through the website from end to end.
Reflections and critiques
Designing an MVP of any product is always a challenge, not every aspect of the product can be thought out completely by the product team, and that is why user research, AB testing, and user testing are important and we got a bit of user feedback and peer critique from the class concerning our product. We got feedback concerning the scalability of the product and the time constraints involved with a human creating the illustrations, all very important aspects of the product that we hope to improve upon with solutions we have come up with.
My first class at Emily Carr was everything I had hoped in a design school and more. Our first task was to bond with a random classmate and give them a gift a week later, how unorthodox right??, a far cry from what the typical Nigerian school system is and I loved it.
My randomly assigned classmate was Alex Dabecki who had already made an impression on “I’m sure” everyone in the class by his “Apple can do no wrong” comment during the introductory part of the class.
Our assignment was to get to know our partner in and out of class, provide each other with an object that signifies their design practice, and come up with a gift for your partner based on how well you have come to know them. Alex and I quickly realised that we both loved apple products and most of our conversations afterwards consisted mainly of talking about them.
When I was trying to decide what to give Alex as a gift, I was drawn to the idea of giving him a glimpse at how I had seen him over our conversations, which could equally serve as a pre-filled template of himself to do with as he deems fit.
I had learned a lot about Alex while talking to him, so I put together a collage of sorts containing everything i had learned about him, while designing the website, I created a memoji of his likeness to emphasise his love for Apple. I chose to design a website because I felt it would be a fun link he could share with his friends. While designing, I created several mobile app splash screens to be used as assets for the website and prototyped them.
The earth is filled with over 7 billion people and the experience of meeting an individual person has always been amazing to me that with how many different people there are in the world, I met this particular person and I get to learn something new about someone.
People usually forget how individual and awesome each person is, and I wanted this website to be a reminder to Alex how I see him because a fresh perspective is needed sometimes and if at any moment he forgets, he always has a reminder in the website.
I gave the gift to Alex during our next class, I was glad he noticed and liked seeing his memojis incorporated into the designs.
An unauthodox first class that helped me meet someone new, gain a gift and give one.