Students under the leadership of Dr Linda Leung, Senior Lecturer at the University of Technology Sydney, Institute for Interactive Media and Learning – are presently undertaking their major Masters project in conjunction with Mozilla Labs.
The students (Merissa Santoso, Ashleigh Elise Sterzenbach, Kate Scott, Fendy Susanto) will be working on designing and developing an online collaboration ~ communication ~ whiteboard tool.
They’re responding to user research showing that project management tools are avoided, and that email was the most preferred tool for collaborating on projects, the students will be targeting three main user scenarios:
- work contexts;
- educational contexts;
- personal contexts
The project themes will be used as test cases, for expert feedback and technical guidance.
As the subject is the capstone of the Masters program, the learning objectives are to:
- collaboratively produce an original digital media product;
- understand the role and importance of critical experimentation and innovation in the development process and technology industry;
- manage and participate in a project from development through completion;
- apply and consolidate the skills and knowledge you have acquired throughout the degree program;
- identify lifelong learning needs and objectives in the short, medium and long term future;
- explore potential research and development opportunities in the field of interactive media
The students will spend the first seven weeks of semester undertaking all the research, planning and scoping required prior to development. This will be in the form of a planning document, which sets out the market and user research that establishes a need for the proposed product. Competitor analysis and benchmarking will demonstrate where the proposed product will be positioned in the marketplace. Technical research will be undertaken to determine the best method of development and as a basis for full functional and technical specifications.
The second half of semester will be devoted to iterative phases of development and testing, so that the user experience is appropriate for the three key contexts of use. Participatory design approaches will be used to collect user feedback. User and usability testing will be conducted in parallel with unit and system testing.
Finally, students will present their prototype to a panel of industry assessors (which will include Mozilla representatives) and pitch to angel investors as part of a digital entrepreneurship masterclass.