As UX Designers we wanted to identify a problem in the real world. So on day 1 we set out to interview attendee, sponsors, organizers, venues hosts and so on to get a better idea of their motivations, goals and challenges.
While synthesizing our research we were inspired by the “fly-in hacker” experience. We brainstormed on how we could positively impact the hacker experience by addressing our personas most challenging pain points.
What it does
Our proposed solution is a match making app that leverages AI to personalize the whole Hackathon experience, facilitate collaboration and human connection at all levels, from hackers, to sponsors and organizers.
How we built it
We utilized design thinking principles to guide our tasks and decisions every day. We worked in daily design sprints to:
- Conduct real-world research
- Synthesize our research
- Decide what problem to tackle
- Meet with mentors and other hackers to narrow down the most impactful solution we could build within the restrictions
- Refine our final solution into a presentation, video, and High Fidelity prototype on Figma to deliver on Demo Day
Challenges we ran into
We all began by taking a holistic view of the hackathon, considering the entire picture and what it means to each participant. It took us some time to hone in on our main user and focus on a core issue that all hackers face.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Achieving success with this project! We spent most of our time tackling the challenges, exploring options, and applying design thinking methods. We began serious development on Thursday, at 8am.
A strong team dynamic. Before beginning our journey, we established a good balance between us and discussed our individual preferences. We were able to handle uncertainty effectively, leveraging each other's strengths and weaknesses.
What we learned
It's okay to "think hard" about the problem before jumping into the solution.
Taking two steps back and one step forward, or even spinning right back around, can help you gain a new perspective. Listening is important; individual sprints followed by collective reflection can help us revisit the problem with fresh eyes and ears.
Moreover, simplicity can bring elegance and innovation; the best solution may be surprisingly simple and low-tech. Thinking "pie in the sky" is exciting, but it's important to bring the solution back down to earth.