Miscellaneous Projects

99% of what I’ve done over the last few years has been UX where I’ve been responsible for all or part of the story from research to define the audience and their needs right the way through to building interactive prototypes to simulate complex journeys and testing them on real users.  I’ve also done lots of other things that I’ve found interesting.  Mainly around apps, sometimes to show stakeholders a concept, but sometimes just for fun.  This page is to give a brief overview of some of these and I’ll add to them as I come across anything new.

Conductive Ink

At Ogilvy Healthworld, we did a lot of work for congress and that often started with the client asking us for something ‘different’.  This was something we did for BI who are usually quite traditional in their outlook but wanted something technically innovative.  I’d done some work with MasterCard where we played with conductive ink and came up with this idea.

You have a printed timeline that uses conductive ink to act as a switch.  The switch activates a Bluetooth module that sends a signal to your display.  We just used an A3 print with a phone to act as the display but this would have been scaled up if the project had gone ahead.

On the print, we have a timeline showing milestones throughout BI’s history.  When the user touches the point on the print, it activates a short video clip on the display.  The prototype for this cost pennies to put together but it illustrates the point perfectly.

As a way of blending traditional media with technology, it definitely hit the brief.

MasterCard Smoothie Bar

One of the products we did a lot of work on was MasterPass – this is being advertised on TV quite a bit at the moment.  I was responsible for a lot of the UX for this and was involved in several projects where we built apps to demonstrate the functionality.

If you haven’t seen it, the idea is that you have your MasterPass app and can add different payment cards to your wallet.  If the retailer supports MasterPass then you can pay for purchases by choosing the card you want to use and then checking out with MasterPass.

To demonstrate this at an event, MasterCard had a smoothie bar.  Behind the smoothie bar was a tablet.  On the stand were several mobile phones with our demo app on.  The demo app allowed people to choose one or more smoothies and add them to their cart.  They then went through a simulated journey for paying using MasterPass.  The order was sent from the phone to the tablet by Bluetooth for the people on the bar to make.  The user then went to the bar a few minutes later to pick up their order.

MasterCard Shop ‘n’ Go

Another app build for MasterCard (we did quite a few!).  This one, again, is to demonstrate MasterPass.  This was built for MasterCard’s stand at MWC a couple of years ago.

The thinking behind this was to have virtual shops in the real world.  The imagined scenario was that you’ve just come back from your holiday and you’re at the airport.  While you’re waiting for your suitcases, there’s a big display with pictures of some basic things that you might want to pick up: bread, milk, etc.  You use the app to add these to your cart and they’re delivered to your home just after you return to save you going to the shops on the way.

No stock to be held, no space needed to display the products, no bags for you to have to carry.

With this app, they built a shop on the stand with pictures of a variety of everyday products.  Each picture had an NFC tag stuck to it.  Using mobile phones on the stand for the demo, users could add products to their carts by touching the NFC tag with one of the phones provided.  We also did a version that used QR codes but it was felt that NFC was something that involved less of a process and people were starting to get used to things like Apple Pay and Android Pay so it was a familiar concept.

Once they finished adding products, they were then taken through the process of choosing their delivery address, etc, and paying using a card from their MasterPass wallet.

Initially, this was going to form part of a challenge whereby the user would keep adding products until they judged that they had as close to £50 as they could get.  If they got to within 10%, they won some sort of reward.