Owning a dog takes commitment and hard work. It’s extremely gratifying, but it's also a big responsibility. However, their unconditional love and loyalty make every moment of it worth. Losing man’s best friend can be terrible both for the owner and the dog. Dogspotter aims to help them in these particularly desperate times by getting the power of community in close proximity involved.
Losing man's best friend
I have lost my dog once. It was a long journey through hell. I was lucky as I was surrounded by a strong dog lover community who helped me to bring him home. Unfortunate dogs get lost forever, ending up in places where no one wants to end up. People are usually helpful, but still, sometimes good intention isn't enough. There should be a tool that can help on this matter and capitalize on the power of communities.
My dog wasn't hurt during the turn of these events.
My design process for Dogspotter
My frightening experience inspired my to design a solution for this issue. In this particular case study, I'm focusing on one single problem, finding a lost dog. As I've been living in a neighborhood surrounded by dog owners, I've conducted a small research. The design process emerges from my findings and experience. Some of my decisions are solely based on my assumptions.
The stages of my process are Ideation, Product Strategy, User Research, Sketches, Wireframes, Visual Elements, User Interface and Interactions.
User Research & Questionnaire
I have talked to fantastic owners who have the same concerns about losing a dog. A dog can't talk to people. One can really quickly get in trouble, especially in crowded cities where shelters and are not operating well. Dogs can't use the help of the community to be found. Everyone in the community is an important piece of the puzzle. If they could get a tool for tracking dogs, the problem would disappear.
I'm showcasing 4 of the 27 opinions received.
Features are designed to focus on the most important problem. Finding lost dogs. Setting up My Profile is important if the user intends to be verified. A real-time Feed is responsible for keeping the list of missing dogs updated. Notifications is the place where owners can communicate, while Spot is the key feature to contribute to the community by tracking dogs.
The structure of interface elements follow the same visual hierarchy on each screen. As the app operates with maps, less distraction and more focus is needed. Top navigation always contains screen-specific information.
Visual Hierarchy & Components
Putting together a page including all the agreed design items creates a visual reference for the product. This will also break a comprehensive document into more manageable parts. An initial and approximate colour palette can speed the process up dramatically.
The colour palette is strongly linked to nature. Brown for the ground, green for grass and blue for the sky. They give the whole user experience a natural flow. Orange works as a highlighter colour for actions. I'm always on the lookout for ways to simplify and declutter the interface.
Transitions & Interactions
Motion can help human beings to communicate better with a machine through an interface. Animations can reduce cognitive load for the user. They make an interface feel tangible and realistic. Quick, scaling transitions contribute to a polished experience.
Help for dogs, designed for humans
My concept aims to help dogs but is designed for humans. Humans who are loving, caring and are keen on helping. The icon speaks for itself, it represents a missing dog in a warm, welcoming environment. I've emphasized the strong connection to nature by implementing flat elements and a natural colour palette. Real-time maps could help a lot with tracking a dog’s journey. Whenever a user sees a lost dog, just selects the matching one from the given list of that particular area. As the feed is open for everyone, people can scroll and check updates on their lost dogs.
Dogspotter is featured in the Interaction Gallery and AIGA Gallery on Behance.
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