March 2011

An iPhone app for local shared stories.

What if you could leave virtual notes everywhere you went? Share experiences and memories, thoughts and reflections? Discover messages left by anonymous travelers as they pass through the same spaces you inhabit?


Create a lifelogging application that tracks some type of data about a person's life and lets them view it in aggregate.


Brainstorming, Needfinding, Sketching, User Testing, Video Storytelling (other team members implemented the iOS code and web backend)

I branched out from the this quarter and took a design class in the Computer Science department this quarter: Human Computer Interaction (HCI) Design Studio (CS 247). My team was inspired by the misery of the "Sophomore Slump" experienced by Stanford students when they have difficult coursework their second year, exacerbated by not living with the core group of friends they lived with in their freshman dorm. Our mission was to create a platform for students to share stories about a place, in order to both help them remember, and to pass along stories to those who come after them. What college student hasn't wondered who lived in their room before them, and what crazy things happened there? 

Screenshots highlighting the core functionality of the app.

Actions include:

  • Viewing and uploading photos
  • Posting a story
  • Seeing nearby notes on a map
  • Scrolling through a list of notes
  • Marking notes you like as "notable"

User Testing

We had 5 beta users, in addition to the 4 group members use the Notely app over the course of a week to determine what people would write, when they would use it, and what they found compelling about the platform.   

Good Bad Examples.jpg

In addition to revealing the desire for features like sharing photos with a post, user testing taught us that we needed to help prompt users to tell stories not just random thoughts. It is important to us that whatever they write be relevant in the future, to both themselves and other Notely users; don't just note you're sitting in class bored, tell us something interesting about what's happening!

Here's a demo video of Notely in use


Top 4 Finalist out of 15 projects, invited to present at Apple's iOS Developer Showcase at Stanford