I initially fell in love with the idea of creating a dog collar that would alert me if my dogs got out of the yard. I thought it would be great to have an app to show the exact position of the dog, and some sort of musical element that could be turned on to aid in finding the dog (in case he was in the bushes somewhere). In my head, the music would play "Oh where oh where has my little dog gone?". Maybe it could even light up or glow in the dark.
My first stumbling block was when I learned that companies like Garmin already have dog tracking devices. A classmate had one. It was heavy and too bulky for a small dog, so I thought I could propose something small and lightweight. But as I did more research, I learned that there are already companies going that route. I also learned more about how position tracking actually works. In order to have real-time location tracking, the device pretty much has to have its own data plan.
I decided to try a different route. Inspired by all the "smart" kitchen devices, I decided to focus on the bathroom. I have a young daughter and bath time can be a struggle, so I thought about what a smart bathtub could be. I imagined a bathtub that I could start remotely that would fill to my preferred level and temperature setting.
My target audience was people with disposable incomes who enjoy long baths, or have young children who take baths. They would be early tech adopters who own a smartphone or tablet (required to operate the tub remotely). We created personas to help develop user scenarios, but they weren't based on real data.
People would not need to monitor the tub as it fills, saving time
Consistent heating for the duration of the bath would be more comfortable
Burn prevention — water would never be hotter than desired temperature
Water conservation — instead of adding more hot water to increase temperature, the tub would just warm up the existing water.
Integration of lighting, music and streaming videos could make bath time more fun or relaxing
I created a physical prototype of the app that would control the tub, and a video to demonstrate how interaction with the tub would work. This video prototype was created quickly in Powerpoint, which made it easy to produce but the pacing is a bit tedious because each slide displays for the same duration.