After digesting the design prompt, our team started off by investigating broad problem spaces that we thought would receive the most benefit from a CUI.
During our brainstorm session, a point that often came up was the the idea that conversation can be healing. This led us to discuss the problem space of mental health, particularly anxiety. Anxiety is the activation of your body’s alarm system. Only one-third of the adults who are diagnosed receive treatment. However, everyone experiences general anxiety from time to time.
To further understand our problem space our team decided to first conduct primary research. We performed eight interviews to gather qualitative research about how people experience and cope with anxiety. We spoke with students to learn how anxiety can be triggered in different ways, as well as a psychologist to learn successful coping mechanisms.
By understanding the difficulties that people with anxiety commonly faced, we developed three primary design objectives that we wanted our solution to address.
It was important to our team to develop a full scenario to showcase how Ada could be applicable. We accomplished this by creating a storyboard for a video prototype that we would use to convey Ada's concept.
The team needed to make sure that our concept of Ada was realistic and could be fulfilled with current technology. We did a lot of research on bone conduction technology, and while at the time it was not widely applied, we recognized it could become very commonplace in the future.
Ada is a coach that helps people prepare, overcome, and reflect on high stress situations. As a CUI she is resourceful, accessible, and non judgmental – able to help you when needed. To see her in action, our team created a video prototype.
Incorporating CUI technology proved to be challenging as our team had to traverse the thin line between respectful and invasive. We realized quickly that language plays an important role in design, regardless if a CUI is being used, and spent a lot of time debating and testing what kind of language to use in the video script.