At the time of writing (June 2019), my Final Bachelor Project is finished and handed in. Through extensive field and desk research, I discovered that travellers on the Dutch railway network are often disoriented and lost when disembarking a train. They are aware of which station they are in, but not exactly where in that station. More importantly; the user is unaware of where they should go next. The lack of this knowledge often leads to the user trying to find the necessary information, which then could lead to them missing a train connection. OPWIS (Onboard Preparatory Wayfinding Information System) is a transparent display embedded into a train door’s window. During the journey, the display is turned off and functions just like a regular window. However, just before arrival at the station, this display shows routes through the station and real time travel information. This way, the user is trained to memorise a certain path to the transfer they are looking for, moments before actually having to wolk that path. As soon as the train doors open, the user knows what direction they need to go.
Below, I will evaluate the development of my competencies as per the Education Guide of the Department of Industrial Design .
– Creativity & Aesthetics
Although some skills, such as sketching skills, have not seen daylight in my FBP, other skills in this competency area have made up for that. For example, I have had the opportunity to increase my skill in 3D modelling (which had not been high, as this were remainders from high school) to recreate train stations in The Netherlands. Spending a lot of time researching and trying out how to create 3D models is a skill that I will benefit from greatly in the future, especially for the next time I will use 3D printing for rapid prototyping.
Much as the way I presented my concept in the final report, thanks to the course ‘Visual Experience Design’, given by guest lecturer Remco van de Craats (founder edhv and Dutch Invertuals). During the course, I learned how to bring across a concept or idea in such a way to convince a client. Next to that, a course such as ‘Design for Debate’ gave deep insight into pushing my own boundaries. Throughout that course, I learnt to look further than ‘out of the box’ by learning not to be afraid to step out of comfort zones in extreme cases. This did of course did not occur within my FBP, but I still pick the fruits from being able to that since having had that course.
A large part of C&A that went into my FBP was building the final prototype. It was important to make the user experience the prototype, rather than it being on a clinical display. To do this, a 1:1 scale mock-up of an actual train was provided by the Nederlandse Spoorwegen for us to use to showcase the designs. I spent quite some time to make sure the aesthetics of the final prototype were of high standards, planning and handcrafting the entire chassis and wall it was housed in, giving me a great deal of practical skills in the development of large scale prototyping.
– Technology & Realisation
I wanted to make sure my final prototype was of a high standard, by using a original approach to present the information. Combining my passion for technology and being able to think outside the box, I was able to build an expensive type of technology in a cheap way, due to my technical insight and expertise thereof (transparent displays).
By taking an active role in the prototyping part of almost all projects (1, 2 and 3) and several courses, I have managed to become very competent in this competency area. This shone through in my FBP, as I was able to quickly prototype a demonstrator or perfect a realistic-looking demonstrative prototype. My passion for technology paired with a capable set of hands meant the developed of a high-fidelity prototype that could almost easily be implemented by the client.
Through basic courses such as Creative Electronics and Creative Programming, I laid the groundwork for a good basis of knowledge in electronics in programming. Only to surpass and perfect this knowledge to a higher standard, with courses about Machine Learning (which will be explained in another competency area) and Interaction Design. The latter being an important course to work with designing systems and products, without resorting to semantics, but focusing on the interaction and the quality thereof.
– User & Society
This is by far the furthest developed competency area. Not only through the USE-line I took and thoroughly enjoyed, but also through courses such as “Introduction to Psychology & Technology” have greatly helped the process of my Final Bachelor Project. A recurring team from this course in my FBP is that a large part of the system is based on memory encoding and remembering shapes, structures and orientations.
At the beginning, a large questionnaire was conducted to try and reach multiple target groups of the Nederlandse Spoorwegen. As the target group for this project would be very wide, it was important to get both qualitative and quantitative data from the user. Later on in the process, to evaluate the usability of certain parts of the concept, the UEQ-method was applied (User Evaluation Questionnaire) . Having conducted such a usability evaluation, I was able to make further design decisions in a next iteration that was based on quantitative data, which was a large step in my development.
– Business & Entrepeneurship
Next to my studies, I have also started a creativity agency. As of April 2017, I was registered at the Chamber of Commerce as a freelance filmmaker, which has now developed into a creative agency producing visuals, graphics and digital media.
Following the course ‘Technology Entrepeneurship’ gave an extraordinary boost to the competency ‘Business and Entrepeneurship’. Through hands-on projects, concrete examples and guest lectures, it became an enriching experience to mock the idea development within a start-up. By extensive literature and themed lectures, I gained a lot of knowledge. I was not able to focus on this competency within my Final Bachelor Project, but has already been well developed over the course of my entire Industrial Design career.
In my career as an Industrial Designer, I have been able to successfully construct business models, execute them (in a preparatory form) and evaluate their success. Next to that, in courses such as ‘Multidisciplinary Innovation’, I have learnt how to save a business model; propose amendments to a business model that may seem water tight, but
Lastly, the course ‘Interdisciplinary Innovation’ was different than I expected, but has contributed to this competency a great deal. In modern day society, privacy is an increasing right as well as a risk. In the course, I was able to show my skills regarding the building of value propositions and business models, but construct them around systems that could potentially violate a person’s privacy. Throughout this course, I learnt how to design systems in such a way that a user feels comfortable with such a system, but from a B&E point of view, all the different types of ways this data can be used in a value proposition.
– Math, Data & Computing
As mentioned in the competency of ‘User & Society’, I worked with the UEQ-method to evaluate the usability of a prototype. However, because there were three different types that would be compared with each other, statistics had to come into play. A Repeated Measures ANOVA with Pairwise Comparisons had to be run to analyse the data, to be able to make conclusions from the results. This was my very first introduction to statistics in general, which proved to be a very difficult nut to crack. A large part nearing the end of my FBP was spent on learning the basics of statistics and being able to analyse such a dataset; making sure that I do not make mistakes in the interpretation of the statistics, as well as making sure to apply the valid corrections to the set of data, such as to the assumption of sphericity.
Furthermore, I followed a course to become an intermediate at Machine Learning. With the resources made available by the course, we were able to construct a wastebin that would separate different types of waste, as well as learn from that. This to solve a societal and environmental problem of waste not being separated correctly. Before we got to this end-prototype, a lot of other assignments allowed us to develop our technical skills in machine learning; being able to craft a system to also recognise speech, facial expressions as well as music.
Basic courses, such as Calculus, Applied Physics and ‘Introduction to Modeling’, have contributed to the groundwork of this competency. Through these activities, I was able to understand the contents of deepening courses, as well as build further upon this groundwork.
– Design and Research Processes
In my bachelor’s degree, I have had many opportunities to involve in academic research, as well as user research and the development of concepts through iterative design processes. In my Final Bachelor Project, I made the use of the Double Diamond process  and followed it tightly. This made it easy for me to plan a timeline and conduct a strategy. By using an adapted version of this, with more detail and more steps, I could align my customer’s expectations much better with mine, by showing them what I would be able to offer them and which stages I would go through.
Furthermore, past courses (such as Human In Technology USE line) have made it possible for me to flourish in the field of academic research, but as I chose to conduct a Design Project, I did not write a paper. However, as part of the preparations of my Final Bachelor Project, I made sure to research the possibilities and current phenomena thoroughly.
 Department of Industrial Design. “Competency Framework.” Education Guide, Eindhoven University of Technology, educationguide.tue.nl/programs/bachelor-college/majors/industrial-design/competency-framework/.
 Wensveen S.A.G., Djajadiningrat J.P., and Overbeeke C. J. "Interaction frogger: a design framework to couple action and function through feedback and feedforward." Proceedings of the 5th conference on Designing interactive systems: processes, practices, methods, and techniques. ACM, 2004.
 Laugwitz, Bettina, Held T., and Schrepp M. "Construction and evaluation of a user experience questionnaire." Symposium of the Austrian HCI and Usability Engineering Group. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, 2008.
 Nessler, Dan, and Dan Nessler. “How to Apply a Design Thinking, HCD, UX or Any Creative Process from Scratch.” Medium, Digital Experience Design, 19 May 2016, medium.com/digital-experience-design/how-to-apply-a-design-thinking-hcd-ux-or-any-creative-process-from-scratch-b8786efbf812.