I was fortunate enough to be offered a 6-month design internship with the document cloud team at Adobe Noida during my last semester in college in 2018. During this time I had the opportunity to collaborate with and learn from the most amazing team members and work on several tasks such as conducting app audits, brainstorming ideas on improving the existing document cloud offerings, develop prototypes, etc. But most of my time there was dedicated to my graduation project titled ‘Moments of Delight in Documents’.
‘Moments of Delight in Documents’ was my primary internship project with the Document Cloud (supervised by Sunandini Basu and mentored by Nitish Maurya and Atal Pandey) where I got to research, ideate, and prototype interactions that aim to make document creation and consumption experiences delightful. I had the opportunity to share my learnings with the entire DC design team(India and the US) and stakeholders(PMs, Directors, and VPs) and get their valuable feedback. This was also a great opportunity for me to learn Framer and dabble with front end technologies like Vuejs, Paperjs, etc.
Based on the discussions with my manager and mentors, we decided on taking the following approach for this project :
Understand what delight means in the context of user experience and how it can be induced in document creation/consumption by literature surveys and competitive analysis.
Identify. opportunity areas for. bringing delight using journey maps, competitive analysis, and brainstorming with the design team.
Create a library of delightful interactions and clearly define the context in which they can be used.
Share all the prototypes with the design team and improve them based on their feedback.
Aarron Walter from Mailchimp writes about the hierarchy of User Needs in his book Designing for Emotion. It’s similar to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, but rather than describing our physiological, safety, love and belonging, esteem, and self-actualization needs, he describes our needs as users. He says that at their foundation, our digital products must be functional—they have to work to solve a problem. They also need to be reliable—they need to be up and running at all times. And they need to be usable—easy to learn, easy to use, and easy to remember. Finally, they need to be pleasurable which means that the user should feel positive emotions which using the product. When a user connects with a product on an emotional level it makes them want to use it, remember it, and maybe even love it. Hence, there is a need for the design and product teams to recognize the value of delight in user experience and focus on delivering delightful products
Study popular reading, note-taking, collaborative content creation, and social apps and jot down what makes them delightful to use.
Create journey maps for specific personas and identify opportunity areas where delight can be induced.
Engage in discussions with the DC design team to know about their ongoing projects and come up with ideas on how we can introduce delight.
Stephanie Houde and Charles Hill in their paper ‘What do Prototypes Prototype?’ gave this definition of a prototype: any representation of a design idea, regardless of medium. Only, in my case, the medium was digital devices more specifically touch devices. In the same paper, a model is proposed for prototypes.
Refers to questions about the function that an artifact serves in a users lifethe way in which it is useful to them.
questions about the concrete sensory experience of using an artifactwhat the user looks at, feels and hears while using it.
refers to questions about the techniques and components through which an arti- fact performs its function the nuts and bolts of how it actually works
The prototypes which I worked on aimed at testing the role and look-and-feel. The implementation part required more time and feedback per prototype and was one way in which the project can be extended.
We decided on a process which was collaborative and feedback driven :
1. Create wireframes and story boards and get feedback from mentors.
2. Create high fidelity prototypes
3. Share with more members of the design team and improve based on their feedback.
During the project I was able to prototype 50+ ideas which address the following points:
Quick navigation to a section in a document
For alerts, loading and transitions between states.
Micro-interactions and animations for a collaborative document
Interactions that quickly notify the user about document updates since they last opened it.
Helping the user in finding more information related to a topic in the document.
I was extremely fortunate to share my project and learnings with the entire design team and stakeholders(product managers, VPs, etc) at Adobe and get their valuable feedback. I have a presentation handy if you'd like to know more about this project and see samples of my work. Feel free to drop me a line and we can talk more about it.