Ambient Happiness

Urban Hacking – Bridging New Connections

San Francisco’s Market Street is no doubt one of the busiest streets in San Francisco. It is where diverse groups of people with different social norm collide together.

Mission

We approach to people with one goal in mind, how might we make people smile and simply aware of others' present?

Process and Iterations

Through iterative design, and rapid prototyping, our final approach for Ambient Happiness was to intercept people at the only spot people actually stop for a moment; the bus stop.

WEEK 1 : CIVIC CENTER & POWELL

This was the beginning of the project. We started out with the simple idea of connecting strangers by intercepting them. So, we set out with a mirror, some sharpies and a roll of caution tape to experiment with different ways we could create small positive disruptions in peoples day.

WEEK 2 : MONTGOMERY BUS STOP

We went to Montgomery's busy bus stop during business hours to test our first round of our electronic prototype. There were 3 sensors tied on the opposite side of the bus stop’s which we hoped users would discover.

Hopes: Users are willingly trying to push all three of the sensors for the pleasant surprise of musical feedback; it's a musical bus stop! 

Learnings: The interaction was simple, but the affordances were weak; no one interacted with the musical bus stop.

WEEK 3 : WE'RE SET ON LOCATION

Another busy day and as usual nobody was interacting with each other. This time we try some different tactics to test affordances. We hang a lot of random items off the bus stop, from lights, to paper origamis and from bells, to buttons. We had hit upon something interesting, now it was time to head back to our electronics hub and build, build, build!

WEEK 4 : FINAL FORM AND INSTALLATION

We installed Ambient Happiness and we were gratified to see how people interacted Ambient Happiness with joy.

Class: Interaction Design: Object and Spaces

Project Date: Nov-Dec 2013

Project Length: 4 weeks

Team: Aaron Stevens, Naomi Kwon

Key Role: Arduino and Rapid Prototyping 

Instructors: Beau Trincia, Jimmy Chion