Monday, October 28, 2019

Design Brief #2: Sleep Inducing System

(Robert, 2017)

Project title: Sleep over Screens

The interventions should help regulate the process of users putting their phones down and discourage usage till the next morning. Design a solution that enables people to ditch their devices and minimise their screen time usage in the bedroom. It should be a human centred solution that allows people to acknowledge the bedroom is a sleep sanctuary, the final product should be a space to allow rest and restore energies. Through the interventions, people will learn to prioritise sleep over screens in this bedroom space.

From the data collected from questionnaire, I've developed an overarching system to test my hypothesis: Can a cosy sleep-inducing environment help encourage people to put away their screens and get sufficient sleep?

Step 1: Sleep reminders: Smart home system that reminds you of bedtime and induce sleep
Step 2: Sleep inducing products to ensure users become sleepy quickly. <Reinforcement layer>
Step 3: Make it accessible - Teach how to convert existing products and include in this recommended pre-bedtime or sleeping routine with a guidebook and DIY tutorials

Step 1: Sleep Reminders 
- How to help people realise its bedtime (or going to be) and they should try to put down their screens 30 minutes before sleep for melatonin to kick in.

Some ideas: Set a sleeping time, lights will start dimming and change temperature, app will start playing soothing music, automatic aromatherapy, wifi becomes weaker

Suggestion for prototype: Low level Bluetooth beacon to place in bedroom
1. Place bluetooth low energy beacon in the bedroom, set connection time to be 10pm for weekdays, 11pm for weekends.
2. Once user enters the bedroom at after 10pm, the beacon sends a signal and triggers a music app in the phone.
3. Relaxing bedtime music will play automatically to inform user its almost time for bed, put down the phone and start preparing for sleep
4. The music will continue to play in the background as the user does his regular pre-bedtime routine - brush teeth, wait for aircon to cool the room
Questions for myself:
* if the person doesn’t want to sleep yet or just enter the room to take something after 10pm, can he snooze the music to play later? - 15 mins, 30 mins, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, turn off for today.
* so the music starts to play after user enters room at 1030pm, when user leaves the room, does it stop or keep playing?
* can the user set how long to play the music? can it stop after playing 1 hour even after he/she fall asleep? or only stop when he tap turn off for today.
* Add a ‘lag 10 minutes’ snooze button? means if it starts playing music, user presses ‘snooze’ but the snooze only happen after 10 minutes of playing. (to induce sleep and make use drowsy). ‘Surf the urge’
* User is able to choose this/her own sleepy song. 

Sleepy music to test for Bluetooth app:
1. Marconi Union - Weightless: 8 minutes
2. Sleep Music - Relaxing Rain sounds with Piano music: 10 minutes

Scenario A:
User knows its bedtime and is sleepy. Switch off the app and tucks in to sleep. (ditching of phone successful)

Scenario B:
User knows its bedtime but is not sleepy, but once he step into his bed...
Activate Step 2: Sleep Induction products
It's a reinforcement layer to make him sleepy easily so ditching of phone will be more successful.
From the data, pillow, blanket and aircon are the most important to help an user sleep. I am going to choose blanket first as I feel there is more room to develop ideas. Suggestion for prototype: Blanket. It could be a weighted blanket or sensory blanket that is so cosy that user gets sleepy easily.

Scenario C:
User knows its bedtime but is not sleepy. Keeps the app on, so the music can serenade him along with the comfort of sleep induction products. But he/she is still not sleepy, he’s bored and knows shouldn’t use his/her phone. What can he/she do?

What can I give him/her? 
Activate Step 2: Sleep Induction products
These products may also help curb boredom and/or prevent screen usage.
Suggestion for prototype: Pulsating Light. It could be a table lamp / projector  / ceiling light that projects a rhythmic glow onto the ceiling, creating relaxing hypnotic effect (inspired by Fitbit and Dodow). After 30 minutes, the light will get dimmer and shuts down. Through the pulsating of light, user can synchronise his/her breathing to the glow and feel more relaxed.

In a nutshell, the interventions I will be experimenting will be, 

1. Low level Bluetooth beacon (Sound)
I will be working with Jason on this.

2. Sensory Blanket with tactility/fidget elements (Touch / Smell / Security / Temperature)

3. Pulsating Light with rhythmic glow (Light / Sight)
I will be working with Andreas on this.

The reason why I'm working on 3 products is because I have no idea which intervention is the most effective, and I believe it takes a minimum of 2 or more products to work together to create an optimised sleeping experience for the user. It's a very tight deadline and I hope I can create some prototypes by 19th November for Viva.

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