Book Amigos

Affective Communication in Long Distance Relationships

AIM : To design for people in long distance romantic relationships

COLLABORATORS : Shruti Bhandari, Dr. Shaowen Bardzell
This ongoing study examines communication needs and methods of people in long distance romantic relationships to understand how intimate computing can help create or augment already existing artifacts to promote feeling of connectivity within non-collocated couples. We conduct a thorough literature review and interviews to understand to develop design framework and design concepts for non-collacted couples. We are planning to conduct cultural probes and user studies to further understand our user base and validate our current design claims. Our CHI 2008 Work-in-Progress Paper


Book Amigos

Book Amigo - Exploring the ecology of elderly

AIM : To design for elderly people

COLLABORATORS : Vivek Anandpara, Shruti Bhandari, Pin Sym Foong, Sam Shoulders
This ongoing design and research project is a holistic approach in understanding the artifacts surrounding the elderly and the role these artifact play in the daily lives of this significant population. Our design, Book Amigo is a physical bookmark prototype linked to a library reading club program that aims to increase socialization and wellness among elderly women living at home. Book Amigo also presents a focal shift from aging and disabilities to aging and abilities. Our CHI 2008 Work-in-Progress Paper


Gestual Interaction Mode

Exploring gestural mode of interaction with mobile phones

AIM : To explore users' perceptions to a novel interaction mode with cell phones

COLLABORATORS : Shruti Bhandari, Dr. Youn-kyung Lim
DESIGN : This ongoing research and design project is an in-depth study and analysis of what gestures connote to users and how users develop gestures further to suit their needs. We study responses and reactions of participants towards gestures as a mode of input with the help of a low fidelity prototype of a camera mobile phone. The study uses an approach inspired by participatory design to gauze the acceptance of gestures as an interaction mode. Our CHI 2008 Work-in-Progress Paper


Book Amigos

Sutham: Ensuring cleanliness in slums in Chennai, India

AIM : To design for homeless people

COLLABORATORS : Shruti Bhandari, Balakrishna Chennupati, Shruti Ramalingam, Sindhia Thirumaran
People living in slums in India though may not lack house but definitely lack home. They fear constant threat of eviction. Such impending fears of loosing their house anytime and hard life styles often result in an attitude which lead them not to care about their surrounding environment. Often, there are huge garbage dumps near their house compromising their hygiene and health. Sutham aims to address this problem and motivates slum dwellers to maintain cleanliness in their surrounding areas, hence bringing a positive change in their lives. Our CHI 2008 Student Design Competition Paper


My pic

Design Idea for Disney Land (no affiliation with the DisneyLand or any other Disney Product/Feature/Activity, used for educational purposes only)

AIM : To create a system which mould into the theme of the Park and helps visitors, park employees, or park in some way

COLLABORATORS : Shruti Bhandari, Balakrishna Chennupati, Jamie McAtee, Dave Roedl
DESIGN : Since the problem was open ended, the team decided to concentrate on the problems faced by the visitors int the park. Focus of the project was to have a low learning curve for visitors, and minimal interaction on the part of the visitor. Other considerations was to gel the design with the theme of the park.We decided to work on the problem of long queues for popular rides. Taking inspiration from funhouse mirrors, character cutouts and elevators in mirrors, we conceptualized mirrors that would reflect the onlookers face with the accessories of the theme of the ride attached to their faces. The design accomodated people of different heights, kids, adults and groups of people too. The full report


Humanetrix Solution

Citizen's Voice - Comments, Compliments, Complaints

AIM : To design a strategical approach for future projects of the client

COLLABORATORS : Shruti Bhandari, Kshitij Gupta, Andrew Trus
DESIGN : Humanetrix is a non profit organization which seeks to make stronger and better neighborhoods and communities. They developed Citizens' Toolkit which provides voting information to people of Monroe county of IN, USA. With the easy access of voting information, citizens of county are motivated to vote and actively follow and participate in the political scenario of their community. Citizens' Toolkit was well received by the community however currently faces challenge from other websites like Project Vote Smart. As a client Humanetrix was looking for new direction and projects which will help it further its mission. Our design team presented Humanetrix with the concept of "Citizen's voice". Citizen's Voice was a result of extensive literature review about social capital, community building, ombudsman organizations, citizen participation in local governance. We also supported our literature review with field study conducted in Public Library and Town Hall. After analyzing our findings with needs and resources availble with Humanetrix, we proposed a strategical approach to foster a sense of community building in the Monroe County of IN. Citizen's Voice is implemented through a short term, mid term, and a long term strategy. Poster, Report, Presentation.


My pic

Design for CHI2007 student design problem

AIM : To create a system to encourage the use of public transit system

COLLABORATORS : Farzaneh Asgharpour, Shruti Bhandari, Adam Shahrani, Kayce Reed
DESIGN : The design was a ride matching system using online and mobile social network. Our work analyzed use and lack of use of public transit, mobile phone habits of young people, use of GPS in mobile phones, social networking sites, theory of Economy of Scale. The solution was a web-based social networking infrastructure using mobile GPS technology to coordinate ridesharing for young adults (ages 18-22). The primary goal of this system is to stimulate young adults to travel in groups using proven social networking methods. the design was concluded by evaluation of the prototypes and the concept. The full report


Vending Machine

Design for Vending Machines in airport

AIM : To create/improve vending machines at airports in 5 minutes

COLLABORATORS : Shruti Bhandari, Balakrishna Chennupati, Jamie McAtee, Dave Roedl
DESIGN : We considered domestic airports in USA. We focused on the problem that most travellers face. Often they (travellers) are carrying bags, holding tickets and jackets in their hands, have babies to hold on. Or in other words they have hand full of load. The trap door of vending machine, from where a customer collects her goods, is generally situated in the lower part of the machine. The traveller has to bend down to get her food stuff which generally means keeping bags etc. on the floor first or things falling off shoulders to elbow or falling onto ground etc. The solution proposed was to shift the trap door to the elbow level where a person does not need to stoop etc. The lower area can be used to put up the advertisemsnt for a company.


OneStart Site

Usability Study and Heuristic Evaluation of "Bookmarks Channel" of OneStart

AIM : To find out the ease of usabilty of Bookmarks Channel of OneStart

COLLABORATORS : Shruti Bhandari, Nina Onesti, Ronald Simamora, Andy Trus
DESIGN : OneStart is IU's portal for students, faculty, and staff providing various IU services, web services, campus news, IU information etc. It has been developed by UITS. One of the features of this portal is the Bookmarks Channel and we carried out its Usability study. The report was given handed to a representative of UITS and the work was appreciated by them. Usability Report, Heuristic Evaluation Report



User centered intuitive design for a thermostat

AIM : To design an intuitive interface of thermostat

COLLABORATORS : Adam Basey, Shruti Bhandari, Selvan Thandapani
DESIGN : Thermostat actually works as an ON/OFF switch. A thermostat is turned off automatically once the room temperature reaches to where thermostat was set. However, generally people feel that setting a thermostat to an extreme temperature will heat/cool the room faster. An interface was to be designed so that it breaks away the suggestion if room is to be cooled setting it to minimum possible temperature is going to cool room faster. The full report


Feedback for eLearning system

Feedback system for eLearning tutorial

AIM : To design an effective feedback system for e-Learning material

COLLABORATORS : Shruti Bhandari, Yen-ning Chang
DESIGN : This design was to create an effective, easy to follow feedaback system for online tutorials. The questions were of type multiple choice and they could have single or multiple answers correct. This design explores the fact how to signal the user correct answers, the choices she made, her correct and incorrect choices followed with an explanation. The design made us ponder deeply about different affordances offered by different widgets. The full report


Snapshot from the study

Disposable Camera Study

AIM : To learn how to understand a user

DESIGN : This study was undertaken to understand a user and his needs using photographs and interview. I asked a young man who is professionally well settled to give me 10 pictures of things/events/places/people he cherishes most. In an interview with the user, I tried to find out what made those photographs cherished in his life. The study then proceeded to find design implications using the insights revelaed form the interview. The full report