• Aarushi

UX of Gravity - Final Presentation

Updated: Mar 12, 2020

Week 5: The UX of Gravity - Final Presentation

Project Brief: Design an artifact that expresses the experiential qualities of gravity.

Team Members: Aarushi, Sarah, Reizan, July, Ivy

Strong Competencies: Visualisation, Research Methods, System awareness

Weak Competencies: Reflection, Storytelling, Agility, Prototyping, Ideation

The second phase of the project was to make people experience gravity through an artifact. In order to start the process of designing our artifact, we went for hands-on in paragliding, expecting it to give us better ideas about our artifact.

Video by July, GIF by Aarushi

Artifact Idea 1:

We were really inspired by the smooth movement of the person flying a paraglider once he is in equilibrium position after defying all the forces acting on him. We wanted people to experience that peaceful movement of the flight. The idea was to make a live size structure that would represent all the four forces that act on the paraglider. We thought of attaching a harness on a person and allowing him to pass through this structure by applying a forward force.

This idea failed on the prototype stage, as we felt that this was too literal to represent paragliding. Also, it did not really allow people to experience the forces acted on the paraglider before he reaches equilibrium.

Photos by Aarushi

Artifact Idea 2:

Our second idea was to express all the forces acting on the paraglider, hence we thought of making a replica of a cross-section of the paraglider and showing the forces with the help of wax flowing in different directions. Our major idea was to control the artifact with different magnetic forces replicating the actual four forces (Lift, Weight (the force of gravity), Drag and Thrust) that act on the paraglider.

Unfortunately, this idea failed as well, as the artifact was too fragile to be controlled and without that, it didn't convey the purpose well. It was just a visual artifact that was too abstract, hence we dropped the idea and thought of exploring more possibilities.

Photos by Aarushi and Sarah

Artifact Final Idea 3:

After failing on our last two ideas this time we wanted to have an artifact that allows you to experience the acted forces and control them to reach an equilibrium state. Hence, we thought of designing an artifact that explains the four forces that act upon the paraglider and lets you play with them to reach equilibrium.

Photos by Reizan, GIF by Aarushi

Our final artifact consisted of the four magnets on the spheres represented the four different forces acted upon the paraglider. The iron filings inside the sphere represented the amount of control and balance it is required by the paraglider to reach equilibrium. The artifact allowed people to control these forces and play with them in order to reach the equilibrium stage.

Photos by Reizan and Ivy

Final Artifact:

Photos by John Fass


The feedback that we got from the class suggested that the artifact was too abstract to understand and relate to our explanation. People felt that it didn't engage a lot of people, as it was possible for only 3-4 people at a time to play with the magnetic forces to understand the idea. I think the feedback was very constructive and gave us an understanding of how to make an artifact more engaging and experiential.

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