Final project prototype


Chosen Option: #1 Discomfort Matrix Duo

Choose a partner and discuss areas of intervention on your personal discomfort matrices you would each be willing to allow your partner to address for their project. Use the types of discomfort and desired outcomes as your design briefs. In continuous consultation with your partner, you will each design an experience or device for the other person that attempts to address their area of concern.

Project Partner: Jinhee Ahn

Jinhee's Discomfort matrix

Jinhee's Discomfort matrix

Jinhee and I had a discussion about her discomforts and aspects of it that bother her the most. Each discomfort was valid and she was open to addressing any part of it for the project. One of the discomfort that stood out the as a common one for many other people was related human ability of 'processing', more particularly related to 'maintenance rehearsal'. Humans are good creating information chain patterns in their minds, hence are good at recalling information that they elaborately understand and keep keen interest in, whereas short information that may not make sense or may need more information to form context in memory, may easily be forgotten.


All of us have faced situations where we forget crucial data related to a rarely required task, like password, name, address, phone number, ID number, User name, Card number etc. This data in some cases is created by us, and in some cases introduced to us. No matter what the origin, we as humans need to practice recalling this data from time to time to keep it alive in our neural network. It's highly improbable for us to completely forget about such crucial information. Hence sometimes when hinted about it, we are capable to recall it from our memory.


Personal experience:

When I first arrived at NYU's Tisch school of arts, many things and people were new to me. I had a tough time remembering names and numbers too, because of sudden introduction to new cultures and norms. Especially names of classmates who came from regions who's culture and language I didn't have prior exposure to. While others also faced same situation while remembering my name. I do have my own way of forming patterns to remember certain things, where I'd link a name or a number to an object or word I know, but also wanted people to easily remember my name is an easy way. The best thing I could come up with was telling people " My name's Nitish, rhymes with Tisch" as we all had that one object in common, and surprisingly it worked in a way.


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Concept 1:

An Application to remember short information.

The App would a simple mnemonic device, where users can use concepts like 'Method of Loci', 'Acronyms', 'Chunking and organization' or 'imagery' to help them remember something. The App could help keep a log of short notes, pictures, passwords etc, while also showing ways to remember them according to the user's ease of understanding. The App wouldn't show logged information directly to the user as such info may be private or confidential, but rather show the user's mnemonic method first so that only the user understands even if someone else happens to glance at it.



Log info-

Step 1: Type in your password or generate one 

Step 2: Give it a context or heading

Step 3: Select a mnemonic tool to help remember

Step 4: App creates context (the user can also edit and add pictures/text)

Step 5: Save


Recall info-

Step 1: Open app

Step 2: Browse through thumbnails and headings

Step 3: Click thumbnail to get a hint

Step 4: Unlock info with a double tap* (In case the user doesn't understand the hint)


* The user can set a 4 pin password / swipe pattern/ finger print for the App that unlocks info. The App will also have troubleshooting options that will send a link to the user's registered email to set new password and recover data.

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Concept 2:

What's my name? a messenger/email app.

When users becomes a part of a new team / community, they need to communicate with the with their new colleagues / members. People sometimes have a hard time knowing names of these new people, maybe due to discomfort in conversing or not knowing the person well enough.

How the app works:

The app will have a preset database of all existing users in the team, the users will only see profile pictures of their colleagues in the app, which they can select to chat with.

The user has to type in the person's name in order to send a message.

The user who receives the message also has to use the message sender's name in order to reply.

How it helps:

This would encourage the user to go through the discomfort of remembering names, or having to actually talk to others in person, maybe ask for their names again and again. This might result in a uncomfortable conversations, in turn making sure the user remembers the names.

Possible additional features:

  1. The app might be gamified, where the user gets points to use correct names and contact as many users as possible.
  2. The app could be location based, where the user could only message people in the user's nearby vicinity. Maybe it sends automated messagesto new people it detects near the user (example: " Hi, I'm _____, what's your name? Let's meet!"). This would definitely force the user to face uncomfortable situations of conversing with people and maybe would actually be a memorable way to better remember the name through a shared experience.



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