Nudge Nudge is a wearable inspired by perhipal design and ambient display. It’s a watch that doesn’t tell time but tells something in relationship to time, your Google Calendar Events. Nudge Nudge was inspired by my time interning at R/GA, where I would have meetings back to back. I never needed to know if it was, per se, noon, but I needed to know if I had twenty minutes free to grab lunch before or after a meeting.
I started Nudge Nudge as a research project for my class at ITP called “The Temporary Expert.” My project focused on clocks and time. With this project, I created a concept- create a watch that tells something in relationship to time but does not tell time. The concept of the Nudge Nudge grew out of this class with my focus on wearables and the study of gesture, haptic communication, and time.
Worn by the user in many different physical and social settings, a wearable communication device has the potential to distract not only the user, but also anyone nearby (a phenomenon that we know only too well from our experience with cell phones) quiet peripheral display, then, can be particularly valuable for wearable devices. How do we hide and reveal information with a wearable? What cues can we create that minimally, peripherally notify only the user and not the surrounding audience of the user? These are the questions that lead to the design of the Nudge Nudge.
The eventual form of the Nudge Nudge became a lamp for the ITP Winter Show of 2013.
I did two specific tests rooted in scenario based prototype testing to test the interaction of the Nudge Nudge and the users’s responses to color change. My first test involved six users wearing a sticker for 24 hours. I texted the user at random times to remind them of the sticker. One user refused to wear the sticker. The other five wore it. I followed up with questions afterwards and the major takeaway was the interaction reminded them of the sticker’s existence but the interaction was annoying unless it served a purpose. One user equated the sticker to a cellphone vibrating- it can be annoying but it’s alerting the user of something specific. The interaction has to be useful and specific.
My second testing involved using the kinect with six different users. I created a processing sketch that created four squares that changed color based off movement. However, the color change was set to random. Each user liked the reaction. In follow up questioning, I had each user describe the interactions and feedback. Each user equated and justified specific colors to specific gestures and quickness or slowness of movement and action. The users provided meaning to the colors but also quickly decided and equated colors to specific meanings.
These two tests were major takeaways in what I wanted the Nudge Nudge to be: ambient notifications with specific colors to represent time.
Skills: Concept development, prototyping/iteration, user research.
Tools: Python, Google Calendar API, Arduino, LEDs, Illustrator.
Code can be found here.