This is my Google Innovator Project journey. You can find the previous entries here:
WHAT I’VE BEEN UP TO
Since my last entry, much of my time has been spent designing, building, coding, deleting, building, deleting, researching, designing, and more deleting. Basically, lots of prototyping.
In my previous post, I was debating about using Android Studio instead of Thunkable to create the app. While I still think I could design a more professional app using Android Studio, I decided to stick with Thunkable because:
a) I’d already started the project with Thunkable
b) The Android Studio learning curve
c) I wanted to make a prototype of the app so to gain feedback. Thunkable is ideal for prototypes
d) Once the app is finished, I can rebuild it for iOS using Thunkable, thus getting it into more users hands and, hopefully, receive more feedback on improvements.
Below I will explain the different screens I have created with some notes for each page. My goal is to have a working prototype within a month (emphasis on prototype). As a refresher, I’m building an app that will be a design journal that uses the Design Thinking method to document the user’s design process during a project.
SCREEN 2 – LOG-IN SCREEN
Again, pretty straightforward. Users can create an account and then log into their app. Not in love with the buttons and I’m thinking I may use gear icons instead to match the logo. Will experiment later.
SCREEN 3 – PROJECT PAGE
I’m going to be honest, I don’t have this screen developed yet. The image you see here is a screenshot of the Google Science Journal app. On this page, I want the user to be able to create a new project. All of the subsequent screens will then be integrated into the project. I have searched high and low for a way to code a screen like this using block coding. Conceptually I understand how to do it: Once a project is created and named, all subsequent pages will then be stored in a project folder with the project name. The databases will then locate these files based on tags using the project name. But I have totally hit a wall on how to code this. This screen has been a major source of frustration.
SCREEN 4 – MAIN MENU
This screen allows the users to create various entries based on the different steps of Design Thinking. It serves as the main menu for each project. In addition to the five steps of Design Thinking, I’ve also included an additional step called ‘Learn’. When clicked the user will be taken to a website I’m developing that will include quick tutorials and activities for each step of the Design Thinking process. In this way, the app and the website can be used to teach students and teachers how to use Design Thinking. Not thrilled about the size of the buttons, but I’m working on it.
SCREEN 5 – EMPATHIZE
The Empathize screen will allow users to connect to the issue they are trying to solve. After completing activities on the supplemental website, or in-class activities, users can input information that will act as a reminder for them as they work through the design process. Teachers can quickly and easily see how students are connecting to their issue or topic.
SCREEN 6 – DEFINE – RESEARCH
During the Define stage, users interview, research, and investigate their topic or issue. This screen is designed to help the user to document various resources as they gain a better understanding of the issue. All of the resources will be stored on this page and act as a research notebook.
SCREEN 7 – DEFINE – POV STATEMENT
The Point of View is an essential part of the design process as it gives the user a clear focus on the user, their needs, and a deeper understanding of the issue before they start looking for solutions. This screen will act as a reminder for the user as they progress through the design process. Often, especially during the prototyping phase, the user can become lost or move in a different direction. The POV statement acts as a reminder of the focus of the project. This screen will also be an important resource for teachers to gain a better understanding of the scope of a student project.
SCREEN 8 – IDEATE
This screen was designed to mimic the rapid ideating post-it note activity commonly used during the Design Thinking process. The user can quickly write down a word, phrase, or even make a quick drawing as they think about any and every possible solution to the issue or topic.
SCREEN 9 – PROTOTYPE
The prototype screen will act as a diary. The user can document the different stages of their prototype, taking notes and adding photos to show their progress. This screen will give the user the opportunity to practice critical thinking and reflective thought as they develop their prototype.
SCREEN 10 – TEST
This page is not yet completed. Ideally, I want the test page to be a quick note-taking screen, so as other people use the prototype, quick notes can be entered into this space. Later, the notes can be used as a reminder of possible revisions.
- The basic structure of the app is in place. I’ve spent most of my time working on the coding and I’d like to go back through and revise the design. The style of the app can be greatly improved.
- I’ve started using Google Firebase for database storage. I need to ensure all of the databases are working correctly.