The Moment (MFA Thesis): Phase 3 (as of Septempber 2014)
(2014-2015 in collaboration with the MIT Media Lab) Role: Research, UI, UX, Prototyping, Testing

The Moment -Phase 3 (as of Septempber 2014)

TSince the features were all decided on, the third design phase was focused on making the interface more clear as well as implementing the whole app. There were only some minor changes in this version, including:

  1. The navigation bar was curved to emphasize the “create logs” button. This was to encourage the user to do self-reporting more often as this was the most important aspect of the tool
  2. The appetite reporting is now presented with new icons in the form of an apple that’s been eaten. The user chooses how hungry she feels by tapping the icons with different portion of left apple(s). The text description is accompanying the icons to make them clearer to the user
  3. As I mentioned at the end of first design phase, I reached sensors that could be integrated into this app. Fitbit and Up by Jawbone currently provide APIs for integration. My developer and I are still trying them. In the meantime I have added a section into “settings” panel for this feature
  4. The social supports feature was implemented using Facebook API as planned. The user can now see a list of her Facebook friends who have The Moment installed in their iPhone. She can toggle to share or not to share her emotional states with each friend (#4). She is also able to see her friends’ emotional states and send them a hug.
  5. A new visualization was added into the overview screen. It offers the user a way to review her mood logs and sleep logs at the same time. The advantage of this visualization is that, the user can clearly see four things: her sleep pattern (including time and length), her mood pattern, the relationship between her sleep and mood the day after, and the frequency of her self-reporting, which, according to my psychological consultant, could be another possible indicator of bipolar patterns.
  6. The color wheel picker for self-reporting was slightly modified by changing the names to make it more understandable. The changes were made according to both user testing and recommendations of a writing professional (#6).
A working prototype of The Moment was implemented and presented at the ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (UbiComp 2014) in September, 2014 in Seattle.


At the conference I introduced The Moment to a large audience, and met with people who are working on similar subjects. For example, I met a girl from Germany, whois conducting research about how to design a questionnaire to get a more objective result from bipolar patients. Both of our projects were still in progress. We shared our current research findings with each other and exchanged contact information so that we can keep each other posted with future findings.

The positive feedback I received at the conference was another exciting thing. Some of it was quiet interesting. For example, I showed the app to three graduate students from Washington University and explained that one of the app’s purposes was to record the happy moments so that they could be used later to cheer you up when you’re depressed. They really loved this idea and decided to take a picture of themselves immediately in front of me. They told me that next time if their paper was rejected by a conference, they would pull this picture up so that they could remember they had this happy moment at a conference where their paper was accepted.

Someone asked if I had ever taken a picture of an angry moment. I told him I had not. He said I should take a picture of an angry face of myself and it could be a good intervention in the future too. He then showed me an example that did successfully make me laugh :)