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16 January 2013

Using Activity Mapping to Identify Design Opportunities

Activity Mapping to Identify Design Opportunities

Part A: Activity Mapping

Note: You cannot do this exercise in a random manner. It will lead you to no where. You must have in mind your target audience (targer user or target group) to begin and end effectively.

An example: Activity mapping on 'Eating Satay'
1) Pre-ActivityDescribes what is done before the activity

e.g. bring money. order the satay. satay is here. reach out for the juiciest stick.

2) ActivityExplains what is involved in the activity

e.g. dip satay into gravy. take a first bite. push the remaining to the front. dip satay into gravy again. take last bite.

3) Post ActivityIncludes what is involved after the activity

e.g. put down the satay stick on the table. or continue 'poking' a sliced cucumber or onion.

4) AssessmentInvolves how one knows if the activity has been successful
e.g. I have problem moving the last bit of the satay from the back to the front. If I don't move it, cannot get it dipped in the gravy. the satay gravy bowl might be a little shallow. But when I do move it . I used my mouth to slide it to the front, my lips becomes full of gravy. Sometimes the gravy touches my cheeks! It seems to be the case everywhere I go and happens to almost everyone I observed.

Part B: Identify Products in Each Process of the Activity Mapping

In Activity Mapping, you made a list of activities involved in each process. Next you will

(a) identify products involved in each process
(b) identify / investigate if there are any problems with these products
(c) suggest any improvements or any possibility of inventing / innovating a new product
(d) note what could make life easier for people
(e) perhaps list all the things that could go wrong when using a product

By now you would have already identified quite a number of design opportunities. Imagine if you do activity mapping for another one or two more activities...

Activity Mapping is adapted and modified from:

This post was first published on 16 January 2012

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