On the exam in the course DAT157 - Designing User Experiences at Chalmers University of Technology, everyone had the assignment to individually design a high-fidelity prototype that makes the user experiences two or more specific emotions. I chose pride and shame.

My project Earth Seed is an automated greenhouse in miniature which is located in company's departments. The greenhouses are connected with sensors such as humidity, temperature, air circulation and UV light. The greenhouses only take care of themselves if the employees are kind to the environment, e.g take the bike instead of car to work, eat vegetarian rather than meat-based foods, buy organic coffee etc. If the employees of the specific department aren't living sustainably, the greenhouse will eventually die which will increase their feeling of shame.

PHASE 1: RESEARCH

In order to understand pride and shame, I did some research on psychology behind human emotions. I found out that shame is a clear signal that our positive feelings have been interrupted, and that it motivates us to hide or to do something to save face (Lamia, 2011). People who feel ashamed do not want to show it to others. I Pride, in the other hand, is a positive emotion and is something that people want to show off. But not too much. If someone shows off too much pride, they can easily tip the balance toward vanity and haughtiness and self-love.

I also conducted a short survey of when people felt proud and when they felt ashamed, and why.

A person crying, which indicates they are feeling sad.

PHASE 2: ANALYSIS

I wrote down a list of pros and cons with these emotions, e.g shame is often associated with negativity but it can also make people do good things in order to get rid of the feeling of shame.

The survey also gave me some more information about when people felt ashamed/proud. I wrote down all quotes that were interesting.

"I always feel ashamed when I am the only one in our friend group that eats non-vegetarian food during the lunch break."

An interviewee said that they feel ashamed when they don't eat

vegetarian food like their friends.

PHASE 3: IDEATION

Source: South Florida Business Journal

After the results of the survey, I knew right away what I wanted to do. I want to make people more aware of how they contribute to the environment. And what kind of people have money to actually make a personal change? Business people.

I started to ideate and sketchstorm some ideas that are playing with people's emotions of pride and shame. I came up with a greenhouse in miniature that takes care of itself - but only when these people take care of the environment. The greenhouse is a metaphor of our green planet. If we don't take care of our Earth, the greenhouse will eventually die.

PHASE 4: DESIGN

The concept is letting departments in a company order their very own Earth Seed - an automated greenhouse in miniature. The different departments will then compete each other to show off who is the most environment-friendly. If a department is doing good enough, they will collectively receive a reward.

Earth Seed is not just a physical product. It is also an mobile app, which tracks everything an employee does, e.g taking the car to work instead of the bike, or eat meat instead of vegan food. The app is of course connected to the employee's department.

Everything is drawn in Adobe Photoshop.

PHASE 5: FINAL RESULT

I designed my concept with Adobe Photoshop. I could have use prototyping tools such as Figma, Sketch and Adobe XD but I chose Photoshop since I wanted to learn more PS. I focused a lot on the app's design, aiming for a nice and friendly look, which will balance the two very strong emotions: pride and shame. 

+46765871821

©2019 by Danny Lam.