PocketMacros 🪲 is a newly launched app that acts as a mobile field guide to support the looking and learning of freshwater macroinvertebrates.

Timeline —
Ongoing (6 months)
Discipline —
Mobile Product Design
User Research
Design for Learning
For —
Entomology Education
National Science Foundation Fund #1623969
With —
Advisors: Marti Louw and Estelle Jiang
Team: Karis Wang
PROJECT INDEX
Section Quick Jump
01. Main App Features
02. Background & Problem Context
03. Design Challenge & Solutions
04. User Testing & Insights
05. Even More Features & Fun Stuff

OVERVIEW
Available now on 📱 iOS and Android.PocketMacros is the companion app of Macroinvertebrates.org — a National Science Foundation funded project that provides a collection of open-sourced educational resources designed to support entomology education.

A robust, mobile app was designed to bring accessible and interactive learning material that can help train volunteers to better collect high-quality and reliable citizen science data. These are used for water quality assessment and environmental conservation efforts.

Download in the App Store or Google Play.

MY ROLE
Co-Leading the Designs 🙋🏻I worked closely with my partner Karis to lead and build out new learning features while also tested those potential design solutions with various rounds of user testing. In the end, we shipped all the designs to be developed and official launched in the app store in July 2021.

01. Main App Features
What kind of features would an app on bugs even need?

01. Field Guide
The Field Guide provides comprehensive text and zoomable, gigapan images on the collection of 150 common freshwater macroinvertebrates found in Eastern North America.

01. Field Guide
The Field Guide provides comprehensive text and zoomable, gigapan images on the collection of 150 common freshwater macroinvertebrates found in Eastern North America.

02. ID Key
The ID Key allows users to identify unknown insects with key diagnostic features for the Order levels also and find them in our collection.

02. ID Key
The ID Key allows users to identify unknown insects with key diagnostic features for the Order levels also and find them in our collection.

03. Flashcard Practice
The Flashcard Practice has various modes that allow both novice and expert users to review, learn, and identify common freshwater macroinvertebrates like a pro.

03. Flashcard Practice
The Flashcard Practice has various modes that allow both novice and expert users to review, learn, and identify common freshwater macroinvertebrates like a pro.

02. Background & Problem Context
Why did we create a mobile app for such a specific field?

BACKGROUND CONTEXT
What even are Macroinvertebrates?Before joining this project, I also had no idea what macroinvertebrates were. And this project is also quite scientifically heavy, which required me to go through the personal learning process of being an extreme novice to a somewhat, maybe mini expert.

To give more contextual information, macroinvertebrates are small aquatic animals and the aquatic larval stages of insects. In scientific research, macroinvertebrate identification is critical in providing high-quality data for water quality monitoring of local streams, lakes, and other ground water resources.

Our work is interested in how we can develop innovative educational tools around macroinvertebrate education to help the process of learning to see, seeing to learn.

BACKGROUND CONTEXT
What even are Macroinvertebrates?Before joining this project, I also had no idea what macroinvertebrates were. And this project is also quite scientifically heavy, which required me to go through the personal learning process of being an extreme novice to a somewhat, maybe mini expert.

To give more contextual information, macroinvertebrates are small aquatic animals and the aquatic larval stages of insects. In scientific research, macroinvertebrate identification is critical in providing high-quality data for water quality monitoring of local streams, lakes, and other ground water resources.

Our work is interested in how we can develop innovative educational tools around macroinvertebrate education to help the process of learning to see, seeing to learn.

PROBLEM CONTEXTWebsite Layout Breaking on Mobile
Macroinvertebrates.org generates around 2,000 monthly users. 20% of them access the site on a mobile device, which is not optimized for. at all. This makes it difficult to take advantage of our most important feature, the zoomable high-res gigpan images.


THREE MAIN GOALSA Robust, Mobile App that is..1. Easily accessible even without wifi in outdoor settings
2. Engaging for the user with interactive learning experiences through mobile interactions and gestures
3. Viewed as a tool that is scientifically reliable for experts, yet approachable for new learners.

PROBLEM CONTEXTWebsite Layout Breaking on Mobile
Macroinvertebrates.org generates around 2,000 monthly users. 20% of them access the site on a mobile device, which is not optimized for. at all. This makes it difficult to take advantage of our most important feature, the zoomable high-res gigpan images.


THREE MAIN GOALSA Robust, Mobile App that is..1. Easily accessible even without wifi in outdoor settings
2. Engaging for the user with interactive learning experiences through mobile interactions and gestures
3. Viewed as a tool that is scientifically reliable for experts, yet approachable for new learners.

03. Design Challenges & Solutions
What are the main UX challenges and the design solutions for them?

APP FEATURE 1The Field Guide is designed with pages that scale across the Order, Family, and Genus taxonomy levels. The Field Guide, initially worked on by Alice Fang and Estelle Jiang, is both a reference and learning material with 93 Families within 9 Orders that can be found and learned about.



DESIGN CHALLENGE 🚨
Different Knowledge Levels
A very important aspect of this app is that we want this to be reliable for experts but also approachable for novices. Although heavily focused on in the Field Guide, this is a design challenge that also drives much of the design decisions throughout the other app features.

APP FEATURE 1The Field Guide is designed with pages that scale across the Order, Family, and Genus taxonomy levels. The Field Guide, initially worked on by Alice Fang and Estelle Jiang, is both a reference and learning material with 93 Families within 9 Orders that can be found and learned about.



DESIGN CHALLENGE 🚨
Different Knowledge Levels
A very important aspect of this app is that we want this to be reliable for experts but also approachable for novices. Although heavily focused on in the Field Guide, this is a design challenge that also drives much of the design decisions throughout the other app features.

SOLUTION 💡Rich and Diverse Content
A combination of text, photographs, annotated illustrations, and interactive media are used to make the scientific content more digestible as well as to improve perceptual skills. We are finding ways of incorporating more visual information through color and iconography.

SOLUTION 💡Rich and Diverse Content
A combination of text, photographs, annotated illustrations, and interactive media are used to make the scientific content more digestible as well as to improve perceptual skills. We are finding ways of incorporating more visual information through color and iconography.

SOLUTION💡A Visual, Seamless Environment
Compared to other field guides, the Macroinvertebrates.org collection is unique for its zoomable, gigapan image technology. This creates a visual environment where users can move seamlessly from full panoramic views of macroinvertebrates to extremely close-ups.

Usually they are way too small to be able to see their body features in detail. PocketMacros helps resolve this with fast finger zooming interactions.

SOLUTION💡A Visual, Seamless Environment
Compared to other field guides, the Macroinvertebrates.org collection is unique for its zoomable, gigapan image technology. This creates a visual environment where users can move seamlessly from full panoramic views of macroinvertebrates to extremely close-ups.

Usually they are way too small to be able to see their body features in detail. PocketMacros helps resolve this with fast finger zooming interactions.

APP FEATURE 2
The ID Key is a complex web of different paths users can go through to identify unknown insects.Translating the ID Key into the digital space, we have created an innovative, first of its kind key that is mobile friendly and also interactively designed. Various features have been implemented in this section to guide novices in making more confident identifications.

APP FEATURE 2
The ID Key is a complex web of different paths users can go through to identify unknown insects.Translating the ID Key into the digital space, we have created an innovative, first of its kind key that is mobile friendly and also interactively designed. Various features have been implemented in this section to guide novices in making more confident identifications.

INITIAL PROBLEM 🚨

An Unintuitive Quiz... or ID Key?
Before joining the team, there was already an existing iteration of the ID Key. While functional, there were many aspects of the feature that was confusing, especially to beginner users. In user testing sessions, beginners thought this mode was a quiz rather than a tool for identification. From this, we decided to revamp this section of the app and focus on tackling three main design challenges.

1. Building Confidence in Insect Identification

2. Merging a Digital ID Key with the Traditional

3. Accessing Various Types of Information in One Place

INITIAL PROBLEM 🚨

An Unintuitive Quiz... or ID Key?
Before joining the team, there was already an existing iteration of the ID Key. While functional, there were many aspects of the feature that was confusing, especially to beginner users. In user testing sessions, beginners thought this mode was a quiz rather than a tool for identification. From this, we decided to revamp this section of the app and focus on tackling three main design challenges.

1. Building Confidence in Insect Identification

2. Merging a Digital ID Key with the Traditional

3. Accessing Various Types of Information in One Place

ANALYSIS

Studying Existing ID Keys
When thinking about more ways of improving the digital key, we begin to reference existing dichotomous keys and charts as a way to understand solutions that are already effective.

ANALYSIS

Studying Existing ID Keys
When thinking about more ways of improving the digital key, we begin to reference existing dichotomous keys and charts as a way to understand solutions that are already effective.

SOLUTION 💡

Adding a Traditional ID Key into a Digital ContextTo tackle the problem of the ID Key being mistaken for a quiz mode, we added in a flat ID key view, which is a more familiar way of looking at a key. When activated, users can move around the screen to understand their position in the identification as well as backtrack or move forward to see other surrounding paths.

SOLUTION 💡

Adding a Traditional ID Key into a Digital ContextTo tackle the problem of the ID Key being mistaken for a quiz mode, we added in a flat ID key view, which is a more familiar way of looking at a key. When activated, users can move around the screen to understand their position in the identification as well as backtrack or move forward to see other surrounding paths.

SOLUTION 💡

Building Confidence in IdentificationAs for building confidence in identification, we wanted users to have more agency on the paths they have selected. From this, we added a breadcrumb feature to allow users to backtrack. This will allow users to retrace their decisions to better ensure that their identification is accurate.

Second, we added clearer visuals cues on where to access additional content. A gallery icon was added above the images to show that many more can be found, and blue underlines can be tapped to bring up clarifying definitions.

SOLUTION 💡

Building Confidence in IdentificationAs for building confidence in identification, we wanted users to have more agency on the paths they have selected. From this, we added a breadcrumb feature to allow users to backtrack. This will allow users to retrace their decisions to better ensure that their identification is accurate.

Second, we added clearer visuals cues on where to access additional content. A gallery icon was added above the images to show that many more can be found, and blue underlines can be tapped to bring up clarifying definitions.

SOLUTION 💡

A More Beautiful, Clean Key ✨With the ID Key being one of the most accessed features on the website, Karis and I also refined the layout of the original key so it can be utilized within many places: web, mobile, and print.

We also worked with an Entomologist to remap the question orders so that more difficult to answer questions are left in the later parts of the key.

SOLUTION 💡

A More Beautiful, Clean Key ✨With the ID Key being one of the most accessed features on the website, Karis and I also refined the layout of the original key so it can be utilized within many places: web, mobile, and print.

We also worked with an Entomologist to remap the question orders so that more difficult to answer questions are left in the later parts of the key.

APP FEATURE 3
‍The Flashcard Practice helps increase learner's engagement, confidence, and accuracy in macroinvertebrate identification. This section had almost a complete overhaul from the initial designs and is expanding into a few other modes such as 'Review Look-Alikes' and 'Multiple Choice Quiz.'

APP FEATURE 3
‍The Flashcard Practice helps increase learner's engagement, confidence, and accuracy in macroinvertebrate identification. This section had almost a complete overhaul from the initial designs and is expanding into a few other modes such as 'Review Look-Alikes' and 'Multiple Choice Quiz.'

EXISTING PROBLEM 🚨
Limited Learning Outcomes
Within the initial designs, they were tested with a small group of users. Limited learning outcomes were an issue that was often brought up in conversation due to the lack of customization that users had in the content they were given. Users also reported issues with the visual hierarchy of content and text on these flashcards.

EXISTING PROBLEM 🚨
Limited Learning Outcomes
Within the initial designs, they were tested with a small group of users. Limited learning outcomes were an issue that was often brought up in conversation due to the lack of customization that users had in the content they were given. Users also reported issues with the visual hierarchy of content and text on these flashcards.

COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS
What are Other Learning Apps Doing?
Design for learning is a difficult task, so we decided to also review and look at other successful applications to understand how they build different learning goals into an engaging process. We took a lot of inspiration from the flashcard and learning models of Quizlet, Khan Academy, and Duolingo. Here are some of our insights.

1. Flashcard interactions already have established conventions
2. Customization is key to learning as it offers different types of learning goals for different users
3. Our learning content and goals are very different from these applications

COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS
What are Other Learning Apps Doing?
Design for learning is a difficult task, so we decided to also review and look at other successful applications to understand how they build different learning goals into an engaging process. We took a lot of inspiration from the flashcard and learning models of Quizlet, Khan Academy, and Duolingo. Here are some of our insights.

1. Flashcard interactions already have established conventions
2. Customization is key to learning as it offers different types of learning goals for different users
3. Our learning content and goals are very different from these applications

SOLUTION 💡
Customization of Learning Goals
One of the main features in the Flashcard mode is the ability to customize on several different levels. First, when in the Order Level Review, users can customize the specific cards that they want to practice on. Second, customization is also provided with different learning modes, which will continue to add in the future.

SOLUTION 💡
Customization of Learning Goals
One of the main features in the Flashcard mode is the ability to customize on several different levels. First, when in the Order Level Review, users can customize the specific cards that they want to practice on. Second, customization is also provided with different learning modes, which will continue to add in the future.

SOLUTION 💡A Tool for Novices... and for Experts
To create a tool that is for two user groups that have different level of expertise on the subject, we looked at ways of emphasizing and minimizing certain information through nested hierarchy.

On the back of the flashcards, the information is more suited for beginners. However at the bottom, there is also a way for more advanced users to have a deeper dive into the content.

SOLUTION 💡A Tool for Novices... and for Experts
To create a tool that is for two user groups that have different level of expertise on the subject, we looked at ways of emphasizing and minimizing certain information through nested hierarchy.

On the back of the flashcards, the information is more suited for beginners. However at the bottom, there is also a way for more advanced users to have a deeper dive into the content.

SOLUTION 💡
Engaging Mobile Interactions
To making learning not overwhelming but still engaging for our users, we kept the conventional ways of interacting with digital flashcards, while also adding in small sprinkles of new features like the gigapan zoom and view switching.

SOLUTION 💡
Engaging Mobile Interactions
To making learning not overwhelming but still engaging for our users, we kept the conventional ways of interacting with digital flashcards, while also adding in small sprinkles of new features like the gigapan zoom and view switching.

04. User Testing & Process
How did we validate our design decisions?

USER TESTING
Listening to both Novice and Expert Users
To really build an application that would be used and appreciated by our target demographics, we worked closely and user tested with macroinvertebrate volunteers, teachers, entomologists, relevant organizations, and other stakeholders. Round 1 of user testing was done by Alice and Estelle. Karis and I took over and led rounds 2 to 4.

USER TESTING
Listening to both Novice and Expert Users
To really build an application that would be used and appreciated by our target demographics, we worked closely and user tested with macroinvertebrate volunteers, teachers, entomologists, relevant organizations, and other stakeholders. Round 1 of user testing was done by Alice and Estelle. Karis and I took over and led rounds 2 to 4.

METHODAffinity Diagram MappingTo begin analysis on our user testing data, we relied a lot on affinity diagram mapping as a way to organize and cluster different types of information. We used this method in several ways.

1. To organize how often a certain issue is coming up
2. The type of users who are saying spec
3. The priority and need of those changes.


Since my main focus was on the ID Key and Flashcard section, we clustered the data into a few main findings about these two modes.

METHODAffinity Diagram MappingTo begin analysis on our user testing data, we relied a lot on affinity diagram mapping as a way to organize and cluster different types of information. We used this method in several ways.

1. To organize how often a certain issue is coming up
2. The type of users who are saying spec
3. The priority and need of those changes.


Since my main focus was on the ID Key and Flashcard section, we clustered the data into a few main findings about these two modes.

ID KEY FINDING 1 💡Lack of User ConfidenceWhen going through the ID Key, many of our users lost track of where they were in the key. This validated our solution of adding in a flat map mode to help users understand where they are whenever needed. We also found that 100% of our novice users hesitated at the second question, one of the most difficult parts to identity. These issues lead to low confidence and accuracy about the final result that our users received.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS


1. Add a map view and breadcrumb feature to allow users to better trace their steps

2. Reorder more difficult questions to be at the later parts

3. For more. easily mistaken IDs, add suggestions and caution indicators to prevent misidentification

ID KEY FINDING 1 💡Lack of User ConfidenceWhen going through the ID Key, many of our users lost track of where they were in the key. This validated our solution of adding in a flat map mode to help users understand where they are whenever needed. We also found that 100% of our novice users hesitated at the second question, one of the most difficult parts to identity. These issues lead to low confidence and accuracy about the final result that our users received.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS


1. Add a map view and breadcrumb feature to allow users to better trace their steps

2. Reorder more difficult questions to be at the later parts

3. For more. easily mistaken IDs, add suggestions and caution indicators to prevent misidentification

ID KEY FINDING 2 💡Lack of Clarity in InformationAs visual reference, we have many example images that zoom into the specific body part being asked. However, even with these, many of our users had difficult understanding what part of the image they should be focused on. Also, the language of the ID Key felt like a quiz to some users.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS

1. On the example images, incorporate more highlights and arrows to better indicate the body part that is being asked

2. Change the language of the question copy so that it is clear this is to help with identifying an insect.

ID KEY FINDING 2 💡Lack of Clarity in InformationAs visual reference, we have many example images that zoom into the specific body part being asked. However, even with these, many of our users had difficult understanding what part of the image they should be focused on. Also, the language of the ID Key felt like a quiz to some users.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS

1. On the example images, incorporate more highlights and arrows to better indicate the body part that is being asked

2. Change the language of the question copy so that it is clear this is to help with identifying an insect.

ID KEY FINDING 3 💡Lack of Clarity in Interaction100% of our users failed to recognize that the example images are horizontally scrollable. Although we cut the images off, it was not clear enough especially with the scroll bar only appearing after one starts scrolling. Also, the certain buttons did not feel clickable due to being grey. Users only clicked on them when being prompted during the testing.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS

1. Restructure the line of images to better indicate that horizontal scrolling is possible.

2. Use blue as an action color to increase visibility to these buttons and to maintain consistency to our design system

ID KEY FINDING 3 💡Lack of Clarity in Interaction100% of our users failed to recognize that the example images are horizontally scrollable. Although we cut the images off, it was not clear enough especially with the scroll bar only appearing after one starts scrolling. Also, the certain buttons did not feel clickable due to being grey. Users only clicked on them when being prompted during the testing.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS

1. Restructure the line of images to better indicate that horizontal scrolling is possible.

2. Use blue as an action color to increase visibility to these buttons and to maintain consistency to our design system

FLASHCARD FINDING 1 💡Lack of Clarity in InformationBoth experts and novices stated that they were confused by the back of the flashcards sometimes not changing due to the Order image and title being used again. Although the smaller Family section is different for each card, it was quite difficult to notice as it was located at the bottom of the screen.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS

1. Bring slightly more emphasis to the Family level information but still keep the Order level information to be the main focus for novice users.

2. Rethink about the convention of the taxonomy hierarchy so that it feels scientifically appropriate.

FLASHCARD FINDING 1 💡Lack of Clarity in InformationBoth experts and novices stated that they were confused by the back of the flashcards sometimes not changing due to the Order image and title being used again. Although the smaller Family section is different for each card, it was quite difficult to notice as it was located at the bottom of the screen.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS

1. Bring slightly more emphasis to the Family level information but still keep the Order level information to be the main focus for novice users.

2. Rethink about the convention of the taxonomy hierarchy so that it feels scientifically appropriate.

FLASHCARD FINDING 2 💡Lack of Clarity in InteractionUsers were confused about whether the bookmark feature was for marking the front or back as it appeared on both sides. Also, the cards do not automatically flip back when moving to the next question, which resulted in users seeing the answer when going through the cards again. For older users, the various interactions on the cards were not as clear to them.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS

1. Make it clear that bookmarking affects a singular card, and not the whole Order level

2. Automatically flip the card back after swiping next

3. Create tool tips on the different interfaces for first time use

FLASHCARD FINDING 2 💡Lack of Clarity in InteractionUsers were confused about whether the bookmark feature was for marking the front or back as it appeared on both sides. Also, the cards do not automatically flip back when moving to the next question, which resulted in users seeing the answer when going through the cards again. For older users, the various interactions on the cards were not as clear to them.

DESIGN IMPLICATIONS

1. Make it clear that bookmarking affects a singular card, and not the whole Order level

2. Automatically flip the card back after swiping next

3. Create tool tips on the different interfaces for first time use

05. Even More Features & Fun Stuff
So you launched a full app... there are still more things you worked on?

NAVIGATIONMenu & Search
There is a lot of complexity within the app, so we created the Menu feature that would give our users more contextual information on the app and to find more micro resources and features to aid different learning goals.

A search function was also built in as a quick way to navigate and jump around the Field Guide for more expert users. This would show recent searches and find search matches at the Order and Family level.

NAVIGATIONMenu & Search
There is a lot of complexity within the app, so we created the Menu feature that would give our users more contextual information on the app and to find more micro resources and features to aid different learning goals.

A search function was also built in as a quick way to navigate and jump around the Field Guide for more expert users. This would show recent searches and find search matches at the Order and Family level.

OTHER TOOLSGlossary & Macro Collection
Ever since we user-tested this app, we’ve been receiving feedback that the complexity is still a little too much for beginners. In thinking about how to better support these users, we built a glossary feature to help novices brush up different vocabulary and concepts.

Lastly, because of all the nested pages within the Field Guide, there is currently no way to view the full collection of insects in one place. We built MacroCollection as a way for users to index through all the insects so they can quickly see everything that the collection has to offer.

OTHER TOOLSGlossary & Macro Collection
Ever since we user-tested this app, we’ve been receiving feedback that the complexity is still a little too much for beginners. In thinking about how to better support these users, we built a glossary feature to help novices brush up different vocabulary and concepts.

Lastly, because of all the nested pages within the Field Guide, there is currently no way to view the full collection of insects in one place. We built MacroCollection as a way for users to index through all the insects so they can quickly see everything that the collection has to offer.

BRANDING
Inviting & Scientifically Appropriate
While this is the companion app to Macroinvertebrates.org, we still wanted to create a brand identity that was inviting, playful, and scientifically appropriate. Karis and I came up with the name PocketMacros and finalized a few variations of the wordmark.

BRANDING
Inviting & Scientifically Appropriate
While this is the companion app to Macroinvertebrates.org, we still wanted to create a brand identity that was inviting, playful, and scientifically appropriate. Karis and I came up with the name PocketMacros and finalized a few variations of the wordmark.

TYPE DESIGN SYSTEM
Typography that Highlights the Visuals
We also refined the design system of the app to make cohesive and consistent UI decisions throughout the process.

TYPE DESIGN SYSTEM
Typography that Highlights the Visuals
We also refined the design system of the app to make cohesive and consistent UI decisions throughout the process.

COMPONENT DESIGN SYSTEM
Expanding the System Even FurtherWe also refined the design system of the app to make cohesive and consistent UI decisions throughout the process.

COMPONENT DESIGN SYSTEM
Expanding the System Even FurtherWe also refined the design system of the app to make cohesive and consistent UI decisions throughout the process.

other workBuilding a Suite of Tools & Resources
Even though we were able to create and launch a full companion app to the original parent resource, we wanted to further expand the Macro universe by building a few more tools and resources. Ultimately, we see these different pieces coming together to form a kit that can be used for different educational seminars, workshops, and events.

other workBuilding a Suite of Tools & Resources
Even though we were able to create and launch a full companion app to the original parent resource, we wanted to further expand the Macro universe by building a few more tools and resources. Ultimately, we see these different pieces coming together to form a kit that can be used for different educational seminars, workshops, and events.

Promotional Rack Cards
4x6" rack cards were created to promote the the new mobile app and its main features. This was given to research centers like Stroud to be given away to visitors.

Promotional Rack Cards
4x6" rack cards were created to promote the the new mobile app and its main features. This was given to research centers like Stroud to be given away to visitors.

Quick Start Guides For the launch event at Stroud, we also created quick start guides to help familiarize users with the main features of the app through annotated diagrams. These were printed out at the 11x17" size.

Quick Start Guides For the launch event at Stroud, we also created quick start guides to help familiarize users with the main features of the app through annotated diagrams. These were printed out at the 11x17" size.

MacroCardsBuilding of the branding system that we created for PocketMacros, we also created a set of 52 introductory flashcards that have illustrations and scannable QR codes that are directly linked to the app.

MacroCardsBuilding of the branding system that we created for PocketMacros, we also created a set of 52 introductory flashcards that have illustrations and scannable QR codes that are directly linked to the app.

Illustration StickersJust for fun, we made our illustrations for MacroCards into small stickers. These were passed out during the launch event.

Illustration StickersJust for fun, we made our illustrations for MacroCards into small stickers. These were passed out during the launch event.

3-D Prints & Laser Cut EtchingsThis summer, we also played with 3-D printing and laser cutting to create these etching boards that students can use to color out insects. These are to create engaging fun ways of seeing these creatures for younger learners.

3-D Prints & Laser Cut EtchingsThis summer, we also played with 3-D printing and laser cutting to create these etching boards that students can use to color out insects. These are to create engaging fun ways of seeing these creatures for younger learners.

Reflection and Next Steps

This was a crazy summer. Not only did I deepen my skills in so many different disciplines such as Entomology, interface design, branding, researching, and launching an app, but I also developed an extremely great and special friendship with my partner, Karis. 💙

And as you can tell.. a lot of work was done, and a lot of time was spent. And even now, the amount of things I learned and tried in such a short amount of time is still quite unimaginable to me. But like usual, let's end this off with some key takeaways.

🐛 Bugs are Actually Really Cute...
Before starting this project, I already liked bugs, but having looked at them for so long, they are even cuter to me (especially my fav, the Armored Mayfly)

🧠 Design for Learning is HardDesign solutions that actually allow real learning to happen takes time! It took us a lot of trial and error to understand how to make scientific information more easily digestible and fun.

💁🏻 Let the Users Lead the Way
Launching an app really helped me see the value in user insights. Because our user groups involved both novices and experts, we really relied on their feedback to build an effective tool that is both approachable but yet scientifically reliable.