Portfolio: KidPilot – Concepts


Conceptual thinking began with the idea that this is something that the child would use on the airplane. I decided it needed to be engaging, friendly, and slightly familiar for the child to make a bond with it, sort of like an imaginary friend that comes along with them on the flight; except that this friend also works with the parent to stimulate their child, give them activities, and give them a plan for eating and bathroom breaks.

Some concepts were non-digital. One centered around a small, compartmentalized baggage for both kids and parents. Different compartments could be separated from the main luggage piece and then doled out before departure. Another idea was a new seat modification, halfway between a hammock and a car seat that would provide a secure space for a young baby where parents on either side could have easy access to the child. The intention would be to free up hands for the parents who generally are holding a baby on the flight while trying to do other things. They could more easily feed and play with the child.

This phase was basically my “ideation” phase in the solution development cycle. Since time was limited in this semester project, I did not include stakeholders directly in this phase. These ideas were founded on the user research done in the past steps, but generated by myself.

General Ideas

1. Compartmentalized Baggage

  • Small baggage with organization for anything a kid and parent might need.
  • Could be a variety of shapes, sizes.
  • Key is that a flexible range of sizes of smaller compartments and larger ones can be used to keep larger and small items organized.
  • Example Use Case: Break half of them off, throw in the overhead bin and bring the other half to the seat – things you need with you, things that can stay stowed away.

2. New Seating Modification/Attachment

  • New seating arrangement/attachment for small children to give a bit of “breathing room” for parents and/or another passenger.
  • Small baby kept in center seat between two parents/adult travelers.
  • Secured. Allows parents to move hands-free when they need to.
  • Good for feeding and play because the child is facing the parent.

3. Electronic Companion

  • A device that acts as a companion for children on plane trips. Electronic & character-based, it asks the child if they have used the bathroom, eaten, or would like to play a game.

This concept took a similar shape of a handheld game console.
Note: Yes, this is an HCI-centric portfolio and one would logically think it would include only examples of digital prototypes and solutions. However, if I really want to consider Human-Centered design as a principle in my work, I think it is valid to consider solutions that have both digital and non-digital aspects (or mixed). This can not only free the exploration of solutions from the restraint of being purely digital, but actually necessary in cases like designing a service.

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