What is Kinnect?
Space food has a reputation for being unappealing both visually and in taste. With humans establishing a settlement in space, the intake of food and the right nutrients is a vital component for survival. With children living in space alongside adults, arises the need to make food more attractive to encourage children to eat as children often are known to be "picky eaters".
Kinnect is an app that allows parents to create and manipulate the unfamiliar space environment and turn it into a more comfortable environment for their children during mealtime. Alongside with the Kinnect app, an augmented reality aspect is also involved. With the changes made via the app, it will be projected into the atmosphere. By establishing a comfortable environment for their children, it will increase their willingness to consume unappealing food.
The Creation of Kinnect
It was the most important to test parents as it was crucial to gather information from users who are experienced with kids and know what's best for them and know what they like.Parents would be the ones controlling the app, so it is important to know if they think the app is designed in the best way possible for their own experience. They would also provide a perspective about kids and their lifestyle that we would not know about.
Testing users who are not parents or don’t work with children was also important as we get different perspectives on the existing products. They would provide data that would not be biased towards the needs of kids but simple just about usability and efficiency within the app.
Testing kids was most important to make the app enjoyable and desirable. This is where we gain the most information about the aesthetics of the application. Testing was crucial to find out what exactly kids like in apps, what they like visually and what they find to be fun and exciting. It also allowed us to see if kids themselves would enjoy using the product and if they would want to use it in their everyday life.
HUMAN SENSES IN CHILDREN'S FOOD EXPERIENCE
i. Vision and colour is the main cue used by the human brain to identify sources of food and make predictions about their likely taste and flavour.
ii. Colour is vital in shaping children's perception on food and drinks, regarding to its taste and flavour.
iii. Visual representation matters as first impression shapes a child’s perception of foods.
iv. Children’s appeal to food is heavily dependent on the colour and texture of foods.
v. Flavour; things taste different to children versus adults.
i. Encouraging actions from parents has positive impacts.
ii. Parents are large influences on children.
iii. Parents put in a lot of effort into meal-time and getting their children to eat.
i. Food hold different meanings.
ii. Children gets pickier with growth.
iii. Eating is a boring process to children.
iv. First impression matters.
v. Education leads to understanding.
i. Co-operation increases in a relaxed environment.
ii. Forceful pressures bestows negative impressions.
Paper prototypes were an initial way to explore our idea. The low fidelity prototypes we produced explored the direct interaction and impact on children a changing environment would have on them. Through understanding what specific visual cues sparked interest and excitement, we attempted to elicit calmness whilst introducing a new environment.
This worked particularly well with children because they were able to imagine the paper as an actual screen.
Through wireframes, It allowed for an understanding of the structure of the parent’s interaction with the application. Blocking out where buttons sat and the user interface, ensured the team were on the same page before visual assets were made and a wire-flow was created for usability testing.
The wide range of planets/environments allowed users to have a lot of options that were fun to choose from and easily appealed to children. The environments chosen were related to the future space environment, this allowed users to link the application to the real world. With the variety of different landscapes, the application would easily suit all users’ wants and needs. This was incorporated after the first two rounds of testing where we found that the options were not exciting enough to keep kids engaged for the full mealtime. With all the fun environments available, kids were engaged and excited to use the application.
Building your family
Allowing users to select and add their family creates a personalised experience for the users. The feature allows the characterisation of their own avatars and building of their family, adding a fun aspect and provoking positive emotions within the users. Users remain engaged throughout the whole experience. The personalisation and customisation allows them to draw a more personal connection to the app, thus increasing their trust and comfort in using the app on a daily basis and adopting it into their everyday space settlement lives.
The priming activity was a surprising addition to the user flow of the Kinnect journey, taking the concerns of familiarisation of food which was essential to picky and over-excited children as we found in Assignment two; and created additional step; parents could opt-in and opt-out of. Adding this optional activity showed to be a successful addition and that the usability testing from the previous assignment for an idea, despite not being pursued, was of use. Having it incorporated based on usability testing success shows how important it is to take attributes from an unsuccessful isolated idea that didn’t directly tackle the problem, into an aspect which users with picky children could see the benefit of.
Personalised Analytics for Children will appear so parents and the software can help accommodate the next family affair, parents can also choose a specific experience to analyse the child's response to planets and make decisions accordingly for the next mealtime.