Blog 1 – Design Sprint Parts 1 & 2

For the past two weeks, I have been doing a design sprint with seven other students from my Interactive Media class. So far, we’ve done a variety of activities to stimulate ideas on how to solve our design problem of creating an app that helps groups of people order pizza from Domino’s more effectively. The next part of the design sprint will involve putting these ideas into effect by creating a high-definition prototype.

The first part of the design sprint involved doing research on the design problem. I read the assigned articles about how Domino’s has used its investment in technology to crush its competition. I also read articles about what makes Amazon successful, as it seemed comparable as far as a company that delivers products to its customers. During class, my group shared our findings and started to formulate ideas about what kinds of features would enhance the pizza ordering experience for customers.

One of the major activities that was helpful was watching someone go through the process of ordering a pizza on the Domino’s website. In this way, we were able to pick out some of the design deficiencies in the site and think of ways to improve upon it.

A screenshot of the Domino’s website.

In the next class period, we began to actually formulate solid ideas about how to solve the design problem. Our first activity was called Crazy Eights, and involved drawing eight unique sketches of different solutions. We were given a time limit for each sketch, and we were forced to do at least eight. Initially, I thought that this activity would be less than helpful, as we thought we had already developed some good ideas. I also didn’t think we’d be able to come up with anything good in so little time.

However, being forced to come up with so many ideas actually helped stimulate our creativity, and we came up with some features that ended up being integral to our design solution! I think it was also helpful to discuss each sketch with the group, since some of our sketches unintentionally spurred the creation of other ideas. After discussing the sketches, we each voted on which were the best ideas using dots.

Crazy Eights sketches.

Next, we created three sketches of screens based on the solution that we’d arrived at during the Crazy Eights activity. This time we were given a longer period of time to draw so that our sketches could be more detailed. Our basic design solution involved creating a group chat function for Domino’s customers to create a group order and discuss what they wanted to order. I decided to draw the chat screen, introducing the idea using polls in the chat function in order to stimulate decision making. After drawing the sketches, we discussed our sketches as a group.

My screen sketches.

As we discussed the sketches, we created questions based on what we assumed were the customers’ needs. After writing out all the questions, we rated them based on their importance. The most important questions were the things that we felt were most necessary to be addressed by our design solution, and acted as a guide for which features we decided to implement.

Based on these features, we determined what kinds of screens we needed to create in order to make a high-definition prototype of our design solution. Now we are in the process of making the screens so that we can turn in the prototype on Monday.

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