Design Brief 2013 A comprehensive management system for children suffering from type 1 diabetes.
Contents 1 Introduction
2 2 Aims & Objectives 2.1 Project Aim
2.3 Design Criteria
Target user base
Location & Context
Benefit of Information
Conclusions & Future
1 Introduction Type 1 diabetes mellitus, or simply diabetes, is an incurable ailment which can emerge at any age due to a genetic susceptibility. Whilst it is true that the disease cannot be completely cured, it is possible to manage diabetes through vigilant control of diet and frequent monitoring of blood glucose and insulin levels.
Diabetes management is a full-time undertaking. Child sufferers and their parents receive no alleviation in other areas of life to balance out the time required to treat diabetes. The earlier these children learn to manage their illness independently, the greater the quality of life of both their parents and themselves will be. This has been identified as an area of need, for which our project endeavors to provide assistance.
2 Aims & Objectives 2.1 Project Aim To design a product which enables the parents of diabetic children to monitor their childâ€™s blood glucose, insulin injection levels, and frequency of injection remotely throughout the day, whilst also enabling them to send positive reinforcement back to their children in order to improve the childâ€™s perception of their illness.
2.2 Objectives This device must employ gestural control and limit its use of screens, whilst emphasising interaction de-sign for both the parent and the child. It must also help the child to feel better about their illness, and remove negative connotations they might have with it.
The overall intent is to form proper treatment habits in the child so they can prevent future associat-ed illnesses.
2.3 Design Criteria In order for this product to achieve what the aims of this project have set out for it, there are several essential components and functions that must be included in its design. Childs Product
- The ability to test blood glucose levels.
- Insulin calculation.
- The ability to inject insulin.
- Communication of information to parents, and doctorâ€™s records.
- Ability to receive positive reinforcement from parents.
- Feature a gestural interface.
- Navigate through information received, and records of information.
- Able to send positive reinforcement to child.
3 Project Methodology 3.1 Approach This project is to be approached in accordance with the following outline:
All information and resources which contribute to the project shall be made available to
the group via a shared Google Drive folder, enabling a deep understanding of all areas
of the resultant design and context by all group members.
Responsibilities shall be shared in a manner wherein all parties are able to contribute in
different areas of the project as they see fit or are needed.
All parties will have some loosely existing role in the project, though they are expected
to step outside of these.
Designs will be frequently analysed as a team, with an open floor for critique and
All concepts and suggestions shall be explored to an extent to ensure the most rich
and well-considered result is obtained.
3.2 Contextual Target It is intended that the project be utilised to fill a gap which exists in the market at a contextual level. We seek not only to improve upon existing function in regards to diabetes management, but to produce a system of use which encompasses broad considerations in the context and scenarios which surround childhood diabetes. Catering to the needs of the primary user must always remain the focus of the project.
3.3 Project Structure The following serves as an estimate of the stages involved in the project. Estimations of time are subject to frequent reappraisal as the project progresses. Stage 1– Briefing Defining market, business, product, user, needs, and potential research areas. Allowed Time – 10 hours.
Stage 2 – Initial Research Research the existing systems of use, social considerations, scenarios and contexts involved. Allowed time – 20 hours.
Stage 3 – Initial Concepts Development of multiple concepts for selected market. Allowed Time – 20 hours.
Stage 4 – Initial Concept Choice Select one design from initial concept phase to carry into refinement for client pitch. Allowed Time – 1 hour.
Stage 5 – Concept Refining Further refine the product’s functional and aesthetic features. Allowed Time – 15 hours.
Stage 6 - Evaluation by Client Present initial concept design to client for approval. Allowed Time – 2 hours.
Stage 7 – Development Further develop concept via 3D modelling, analyse mechanisms and components required. Further refine concept based on client feedback. Allowed Time – 25 hours.
Stage 8 – Finalise scenario and behavioural aspects of project Allowed Time – 15 hours.
Stage 9 – Finalise physical object Allowed Time – 30 hours.
Stage 10 – Confirmation of success Ensure aims outlined in project brief have been met Allowed Time – 25 hours.
Stage 11 – Final Design Presentation Allowed Time – 15 minutes.
4 Target User Base 4.1 Primary Market This product is intended for purchase by the parents of children who suffer from type 1 or 2 diabetes. It shall incorporate separate elements to be used by children and parents respectively, thus the needs of both must be considered.
4.2 Primary Users Children Children with diabetes can experience negative emotions based around their disease, as well as concern over how their peers may perceive them as a direct result of their diabetes. It is believed that providing a product which addresses these concerns will be of great value to the child, acting to alter their own perception of diabetes management to something of great importance, but not at all daunting. Abolishing the negative stigma of diabetes as a weakness is a top priority of the design.
Parents Parents of diabetic children are left constantly concerned over their childâ€™s wellbeing, particularly when they are out of direct contact such as during school hours. Stay-at-home parents in the modern day are a decreasing entity. As such, parents lead busy lives attempting to juggle the demands of full-time work and raising children simultaneously. The addition of diabetes management responsibilities, including
educating their child of the importance of their illness, is an area which requires any assistance possible. Informing the parents of their child’s condition throughout the day is essential for their mental comfort, however discretion is essential in communicating this information to them. Thus, on the parent’s side, providing a discrete, yet highly informative communication method is necessary – this may be assisted by the use of existing technology which users already possess, such as a smartphone. However, the primary product should be its own physical entity which can be smoothly integrated into the day to day lives of these users.
4.3 Location & Context The product is to focus upon periods during which children are out of the direct care of their parents, and must therefore manage their illness independently:
- Whilst the child is attending school
- Sleepovers at friend’s houses
- School camps
- During parent’s work hours
- Business trips
As a result of these periods, the product must consider the need by both child and parent users to utilise the equipment on the go. Portability, in terms of weight and durability, must be considered.
Discretion should also be accounted for, as it is preferable to avoid drawing attention to the product in order to ensure no negative attention is drawn to the child’s diabetes. An overall streamlining of the process involved in diabetes management (surrounding blood glucose and insulin levels) will facilitate this project requirement.
5 Technology 5.1 Communication Technology To meet the aims of the project, technology which facilitates the transfer of information must be included in both the parent and childâ€™s product. This may be a wireless receiver, long distance Bluetooth, internet based, or radio based. Technology selected for inclusion in the final design must be capable of transferring necessary information efficiently with a high level of reliability.
5.2 Internal components In keeping with the outlined desire to provide a subtle yet effective product, which enables simple management of diabetes whilst avoiding drawing attention to the userâ€™s disease, all internal components required by the product must be compact and housed appropriately. The overall silhouette of the product should avoid any bulky additions, whilst ensuring function is not sacrificed.
5.3 Future Outlook Technologies should be considered with an eye on the future of both the product and of diabetes itself. New and emerging technologies should be considered to ensure the product does not become dated or insignificant before it can solidify a respected market position.
6 Social Considerations 6.1 Benefit of Information The project brief calls for the design to enable the efficient conveyance of relevant information between users. Communicating information to parents regularly will improve the overall level of care that is provided for diabetic children during periods of separation.
6.2 Positive Reinforcement The product aims to promote positive reinforcement to encourage the swift development of confidence in the childâ€™s independent diabetes management skills. By communicating information between the child and parents following successful use, the product also enables users to ease into independence gradually, rather than having to take a leap of faith on the childâ€™s first day of school. The end result of this is a developed association between the correct managing diabetes and positive reward which sets the child up for a life of successful and pleasurable diabetes management.
Existing negative connotations which the process seeks to eliminate are feelings of isolation or embarrassment, as well as eliminating fear and uncertainty by introducing a safety net system involving the parents.
7 Conclusions & Future 7.1 Project Conclusions Upon completion of the project, with all requirements outlined in the project brief met, the quality of life of our target user base will be significantly improved. The worthiness of this cause is evident in the scale of the disease, requiring constant management and awareness for the life of the sufferer. Successful implementation of this product will mark a shift in the way diabetes is treated as well as the way in which it is viewed from a social stand-point.
7.2 Future Considerations Appropriate considerations shall be carried out towards the end of project development to allow for future development of the product as new technologies emerge. The importance of the targetted context justifies the need for further updates to the product to ensure users are not left with outdated technologies, ensuring they are always receiving the highest quality function from their diabetes management system.
DNB601 Industrial Design Andrew Yabsley Martin Mogilski Tom Kakanis Samir Ghomari