Week 6 - Report and Meetings

Maria Harris - Fri 10 April 2020, 9:24 pm

Changes to Idea

The concept has changed from last week. In the last post, I was questioning how to use music to represent numbers because I didn’t want the sounds to be instrumental; however, after conducting research, I discovered popular songs help children memorise multiplications better. Therefore, each times-table will be assigned some sort of note or bar of a popular tune. The user will complete a tune when answering questions as each digit, 0 – 9, will be assigned 1 or multiple bars with different pitches and tones. Objects will still be used to create tunes; however, each item will need to create different sounds. For the digit 0 and 5, they will produce higher pitches and tones whereas 4 and 9 will be deeper. The digits, from 0-4, will have the same tune with different pitches and tones. This is the same for digits between 5-9. Colours will help users associate the objects with the numbers on the dice.

Tuesday Session

In the Tuesday contact class, I learnt new methods for how to conduct observations and interviews with the target audience. This was a major concern I had about the project because I didn't have any access to primary school students, as did many of my team members. For me, it would have been easier to do face-to-face, especially when you need to observe the target audience in their natural space or when they are interacting with the prototype. However, due to the current situation, all of these would have to be done online. These different methods and activities helped me to understand that there are other ways to gain information from users than the traditional ways. These include watching videos of the user interacting with the intended space and interviewing people who are connected to the target audience such as a teacher aide who works in a primary school. I still have concerns about not having children to talk to as they are a difficult user group to interview and user test with, without knowing them and their parents before-hand. I will continue to explore the methods and have a better understanding of how I can use the resources I have around me and continue to discuss these issues with my team to find a solution and share the resources.

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Tuesday Meeting

The meeting mainly consisted of creating a mind map on Miro to have a better understanding of our project. The team focussed on parts that we could contribute together, rather than the parts that were about the solution. Team Garfunkel has decided to work on the same context but different solutions.

I found this exercise particular helpful in further understanding the context; we had talked about it as a group but writing it down makes it easier to remember bits of information and know that the whole team is on the same page. This also made it easier to write down the team domain and not miss any important information. Furthermore, I haven’t used this exercise for the part of the solution; however, this would be helpful to visualise the different areas of my idea to continue to go back to it to know what sensors are needed for which parts, problems with the idea and what needs to be done first to have a working prototype by the end of the semester. This is better than just thinking about it and trying to remember these important bits of information, especially for me as I do tend to forget things if I have multiple tasks that need to be done.

Wednesday Meeting

The team had another meeting to find out what each team member had or hadn't done for the report. Then, once we all reported back, we decided to use the same technique from last week’s meetings where we kept zoom open while we worked. We found that this was successful, especially for me because it helped to keep me motivated and on task. I am not a person who enjoys writing and I find that I tend to procrastinate and get distracted more. I am still using the technique Lorna suggested with working for 25 minutes and then resting for 5 minutes. This has worked to some degree as I find that I get more work down, however, I still take longer breaks, whereas when zoom is on I don't take any breaks. This is extremely helpful when tasks need to be completed soon.

By Wednesday night I had most of my individual and team part done, there were some editing and writing that needed to be done for a couple of parts. The aim was to only do editing on Thursday.

Thursday Session

In the Thursday session, we learnt more about Arduino’s and I did complete some of the tutorials. I wanted to do all the tutorials during the workshop, however, I was preoccupied with the Report as it was due that day. I am a person who tends to want to spend all their time working on an assignment due that day until it is finished and submitted, though, I knew this was an important workshop for me to go to as this is where I could receive help if I had a problem with one of the exercises before the mid-semester where I am planning on playing around with Arduino's a bit more. I also had to keep reminding myself that I did have time after the workshop to go through my parts and fix any issues.


When I did the tutorials, I didn’t have any problems except for the RGB LED light which was not turning on. This did confuse me as I didn’t know why it was not working. I knew that if there was a problem that you should ask for help from one of the tutors, however, I wanted to see if I could figure it out first to get in the habit of rechecking the circuit, this would have been harder if I didn’t have the diagram, making sure the wires were in the right place. My circuit was correct, but it still didn’t work. I then used my previous experiences from last year when parts weren’t working as expected by turning it around as this sometimes fixed it. Thankfully, this time it did, and I realised I had it the wrong way round.