During a crisis, many people turn immediately to their mobile devices for assistance and information. One such situation occurs when parents lose track of a young child at a crowded theme park. Assume an application about that park would be installed on devices of a large number of guests and workers. Design a feature of that application that could help quickly reunite parents with their children, without requiring their children to wear or carry a device.
I envision a crowdsourcing feature to help identify and recover lost kids in a crowded theme park.
Ideally, this feature would belong to a widely-installed app for the guests and workers of the theme park to maximize strength in numbers (perhaps something like a general park guide or a web-based app):
Parents post about a lost kid the moment they realize their kid is missing.This process should be as fast and straightforward as possible for the parent, while also getting the most distinctive features of the child for ease of identification. Afterwards, they will also be guided through a series of to-do's in order to calm their anxiety.
Everyone with the app gets a notification about the kid
Theme park staff always get top-priority (full screen pop up) notifications about missing children. Guests can choose to have less intrusive notification settings.
People who happen to see the kid can indicate that they've spotted the kid.
To ensure that they've found the right kid instead of misinforming worried parents, these users are strongly encouraged to verify the kid's identity by providing additional information. Ex: call the parent, write a comment, take a photo of the kid, indicate closest point of interest/attraction, etc.
People who don't see the kid at that moment will at least have heightened alertness..
If they do run into a lost-looking kid later, they can go back to the list of missing kids and check.
The parent will receive a notification when someone responds to their post.
Once someone claims they have spotted a missing kid, the parents can confirm the identity of the kid through information provided by the Good Samaritan. They will immediately be routed to a map with directions (from the parent's current location to the kid's). Once they reunite, the post can be deleted.
Core values: Simple, straightforward, concise, efficient, accurate.
Begin by considering the users:
who they are,
what they want,
what they need,
and what they can reasonably do.
Sketch out rough wireframes of what the users will actually interact with.
(Would usually go through many feedback loops with users, developers, designers, and other stakeholders here. Also followed by wireframes and higher-fidelity prototypes. I like working with paper prototypes, but if needed, I can also use prototyping tools like Illustrator.)
More detail with UI/visual design--while keeping our users and the core values in mind.