Step 1: Create a plan for your persona family, write up a framework.
Refinement of Character Outline:
Step 2: Refining world and timeline, 2×2
Step 3: Create mandalas for each persona
Step 4: Draft a day in the life
- Emma lives in community style housing.
- sometimes uses hologram to chat with family and friends
- doesn’t really know how to use it, so she mostly avoids it
- fairly “retro” lifestyle
- Lainey lives alone, works for a hologram company.
- never sees people
- holograms into meetings
- rarely goes into an office
- goes outside for groceries
- most of her human interaction is with the store clerk
- the store clerk is sometimes a hologram
- Camden, Nasir, and Jessica live together.
- Nasir is a stay at home dad
- very involved in the community
- leads town hall with other anti-hologram people
- runs initiatives to get people to go outside
- Camden works as a local teacher
- in-person teaching art for kindergarten
- holograms into high school and college art history classes
- well-versed in both
- somewhat sad about the hologram situation but sees why it is useful
- Nasir is a stay at home dad
- Jessica is in high school
- interning at Lainey’s company
- super excited about the technology
- tries to hologram into everything she can
- Camden and Nasir try to get her to do more physical stuff
- Mac comes from a very poor tech-irrelevant family.
- sees both the pros and cons of technology
- mostly is using it to get his family into a better place
- is very impressed with Jessica’s work
- spends his mornings and nights at home aka in a very person-to-person environment
- everything in between is studying hologram technology
Visual map of each person’s average interactions
Step 5: Family Scenario
I chose to make a diagram instead of a storyboard for the final step. Since my area of focus looks at the nature of interactions and how they compare from lifestyle to lifestyle, an overview felt more appropriate. This allowed me to visually demonstrate the comparisons between personas and simultaneously show the nature of interactions within the family itself.
Diagram of an average weekday for every persona, mapped out over time.
This shows all interactions had. Like step 4, filled circles are in-person interactions, and outlines are virtual. Orange connecting lines indicate interactions had between family members.
Only in-person interactions
I found it interesting to look at how the intra-family interactions fit into each person’s overall day. It actually became a very influential part of the diagram; I began thinking about how spending time with your family is often somewhat obligatory. You live with them, often eat meals with them, etc. I felt that even in this world, those interactions would still be hanging on. However, they may begin to be taken for granted, since they happen daily. What happens if those interactions start to feel more obligatory, and therefore not contribute to your happiness? The amount of in-person interactions that “count” decreases drastically.
In the same manner, interacting with people for your job is an obligation. Out of the entire family, Camden sees the most real people. However, when the job feels grating, those interactions become a burden and take away from happiness.
Conclusion: There isn’t a lot left when you strip these aspects away. Does virtual interaction detract from quality of life or not? It depends on the person. Referring to the original 2×2 matrix of technology vs. happiness, Nasir is happiest. He doesn’t see as many people as Emma, but has more fulfilling interactions. Jessica, Lainey, and Mac have almost all virtual interactions throughout the day, yet Mac is happier. Perhaps because he doesn’t mentally “subscribe” to the idea of virtual replacing personal. Camden has a fair mix of interactions, but is unhappy. Maybe this means that for some people, technology usage is not very relevant to happiness.
Reflection: This project helped me delve into the role of personality and lifestyle when considering products. Our first project was very big-picture; connecting those concepts all the way down to a single person’s wants and needs got me to explore new influences. The influence of peer/family pressure was especially relevant in my topic. I really enjoyed looking at how the relationships between personas might push someone to take a certain view of a product, positive or negative. At first I felt very challenged by how large the project seemed, but as I got into it, I began to see how important it was to look at all different types of personas and how some balanced others out. I feel that I did really well at communicating the personas, lifestyles, and reasoning for each person’s choices. I would like to spend more time getting into the details of the impact of their choices. Given more time, I’d also be interested to map these sorts of choices out over the long term: for each person, does being unhappy trigger a change in lifestyle and does that change increase happiness, how do these choices change as a person moves into a different stage of life or as the first non-tech generation completely dies out?