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“Carbon Reducer”

Creators: Lilah, Ibrahima
High School Students from High School for Environmental Studies
Type of Project:
  • UX/UI Design
Themes of Project:
  • Environment/Sustainability
Carbon Reducer

About this Project:

This app addresses people day to day pollution and how to reduce their personal carbon footprint. We originally wanted to make a tracker. So we developed that into an app that tracks your carbon footprint; while also giving helpful feedback and other opportunities for improvement. It works like an online diary that gives feedback and opportunities.

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Community Feedback:

Great Design
Makes Me Think

Feedback from the Judges:

👏 Documentation Engineer at Meta — Emoti-Con Judge
Hi team. This is a very thoughtful and well-articulated app idea to tackle a critical environmental issue. Your design process is easy to follow, and I liked the way you used research to drive your prototypes--this is very similar to the way the design teams I've worked with approach their work. Your mock-ups are very eye-catching and do a great job in telling the story, as are your text descriptions. Great job!

👏 UX/UI Designer at Irene Geller Design — Emoti-Con Judge
First, you did a great job by doing user research, by asking your teachers and classmates what their “pain points” or struggles are when it comes to understanding and reducing their carbon footprint. Actually speaking to the users of our apps is important because we can discover real problems and opportunities that we can try to solve with our designs! You discovered a really important problem in your research: That many people feel helpless to reduce their carbon footprint because they cannot see the direct impact of making a change.

You clearly thought carefully about how your app might fix this problem by giving users a way to feel their positive impact through your app. On the first app screen (in your slides), you show: “Impact: 25% decrease since 6/20.” That’s great information to tell the user! People like to see how they have improved over time as they work hard towards a goal. What other ways can you think of to show the user what their carbon footprint is, and let them compare how they have improved over time or achieved their goals?

The tips on how to reduce their impact, the map, and the community events sections are great ways to make users aware of what is going on around them and show them how to make a positive change.

The biggest feature seems to be the journal. Remember when I asked, “How can we show users how they’ve improved their footprint over time?” Imagine what we might be able to do with the information the user puts in their journal. Could we give them options to measure specific things? But which things? This is a problem some user research could help us solve. It doesn’t need to be complicated, either - you could ask a few people to write in a notebook for a few days, and write down what kinds of bad and good things they did to reduce their carbon footprint. This could give you an idea of what kinds of things users might want to track and improve on in your app.

I was also very impressed to see the inclusion of accessibility settings (such as changing font sizes, and select to speak/read.) Well done! This is an area many companies overlook when building their apps. What are some other accessibility features we could add to our app to make it easy to use for even more people? Something that comes to mind is color blindness. You can try uploading your screen designs to this colorblindness accessibility checker (https://www.color-blindness.com/coblis-color-blindness-simulator/) to see if there are any areas in your design that would be hard to understand with different types of colorblindness. One way different apps and games have tried to help with this problem is by allowing users to change the color palette of the app so it works better with their type of colorblindness. What could that setting look like in your app?

I also noticed you included settings to allow the user to adjust their location range and block/restrict other users. Giving users the ability to customize their settings is another important part of accessibility and responsible app design. Good work!

I liked getting a peek into your design process as well! I liked that you shared how you weren’t sure what to design at first, and slowly discovered your idea for Carbon Reducer. I am curious what helped you make your decision! Maybe you can add the answer to that to the story of your process. Figuring out exactly what to design is a big part of the process for many designers and companies!

Your team also designed very nice slides. I can see you carefully thought about the colors, images, and fonts. The design gives a calm and nature-like feeling that could inspire users to protect nature. Creating a mood like this with the design choices you make is a powerful skill that many designers work hard to achieve!

Overall, your team did an excellent job with this project. You found a common problem people have (knowing how to reduce their footprint) and found several ways to try to help them, with ideas about how to keep improving your app (which I hope you keep working on!) Outstanding!

👏 Principal Product Manager at Self-Employed — Emoti-Con Judge
I really enjoyed reviewing your thoughtful and well-articulated app idea aimed at tackling a critical environmental issue. Your design process is clear and easy to follow, and I appreciate how you used user research to inform your process. You are off to an amazing start here for a prototype!

From a product perspective, I noticed that this app is very NY-based. It might be worth considering how this app could have a broader impact on a larger geographic area. To explore this further, I would suggest interviewing a more geographically diverse audience segment. Additionally, considering the integration of geotagging could enhance the app's functionality by allowing users to track their locations and activities more effectively.

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