Sospiro Textbook

Role(s): UX + Product Designer, Writer, Illustrator

Sospiro Textbook teaches a language and detect learning patterns to adapt to their learning journey through visual, audio and motor input.

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"How can I help users overcome language barriers in the long term and conceptualize a tool that may exist 50 years later?"

Situation

After finishing the prototype for the Sospiro app, I realized that the tool meant to aid constant migration and language barriers is severely lacking in teaching capacity.

World Building

What we had was something that we are already familiar with. This defeats the purpose of the IMPACT card activity that strives to challenge our perception of the world so I took a new spin on the story.

Chosen Impact Cards (4/6)

Climate
Earth is reset to pre-industrial conditions
Economic System
Money expires after one year
Work Conditions
Emotional labor is held at a premium
Health
Diagnoses are crowd sourced
Personal Communication
Language between generations is mutually unintelligible
Identification and Learning
Produced by the Government
6 cards are picked but only 4 cards are used for world building because 1 problem is already too much to handle, let alone 4

Expand for world building text +

50 years into the future, the lamenting of humanity’s loss is to be prevented from repeating itself through strong government regulation and heavy tracking. Information is held at its utmost priority and with the potential of political and environmental factors, transparency between the government and its citizens along with raw, unbiased content from trusted scholars ensure a brighter future for generations beyond ours to experience.

The Government of Alexandria is responsible for:

  • Distribution of educational material through variety of mediums
  • Updating the curriculum and set up schools
  • Setting up the Alexandria network across libraries internationally
              Distribution: Digital texts to access worldwide
              Preservation: Recreate ancient or old texts
  • Prevent outside factors that may harm the libraries and people (environmental, political, etc)
  • Distribution should not contribute to harming the planet

Due to scholars from different backgrounds migrating and texts of varying languages, a default language is chosen to not favor one nation or language over the other to prevent conflicts of interests, nations, and religions that may disturb world peace.

The language both written and spoken are decided to be Ancient Egyptian with sub-national languages including:  English, Latin, Greek and Sanskrit as they make up the bulk of many ancient and modern languages. Ancient Egyptian was chosen out of all languages as it relies on both literary and artistic skills to learn the language. Most mathematics lessons derive from Egyptian texts which will be used in classrooms. Artistic virtues (will be explained in future sections) are praised as they fulfill the emotional needs which is held at a premium standard in the future. Most noticeably, the same language evolves so quickly that generations need a standardized set of rules to communicate.

With the protection of knowledge, the government has to look into environmental factors in the short term and long term. Now with the technology of 2068, methods of resetting the damage done to the planet is possible and heavily regulated to further protect ancient texts from deteriorating in polluted air and ensure the best health for its citizens. Further maintenance to the planet prevents unexpected natural disasters from climate change.

Furthermore, an intense care for emotional needs of people are met with the technology that is available in the future. A long time myth disregards beauty as an extra flavor to add and functionality is first priority philosophy. Though artistry serves no additional purpose to an object, it heightens the emotional virtues that in return increase mental health within one. As creativity and expression are valued, more attention to appeasing those virtues are not only encouraged but infused into daily life.

Meet Lam

Age: 35
Relationship with technology: Regular user but only knows basics
Family: Married
Occupation: window washer, Nintendo merchandise distributor
Motivations: Take care of family and catch up to society
Interests: photography, reading non-fiction, telling stories

Lam is one of the recent immigrants who arrived in Stratford with his family. Often he takes his wife and child out to take pictures in his free time.

As a busy man, he struggles to make time for himself to sit down comfortably. In this new society he struggles to integrate himself, and needs affordable access to materials. Reserved and shy, it is difficult for him to ask for help and bears responsibility heavily on himself when completing a task or has favors from his workplace regarding shifts.

The Concept: For Who?

Avatar for Sospiro Textbook persona
"Hi customer, the Splatoon amiibo will be shipped in 2 weeks, let me know if there is any trouble!"
"How am I able to empathize with someone struggling with learning a language?

To further understand the difficulty of learning an unknown language from scratch, I took on the challenge of learning to read hieroglyphics with the help of a book called: How To Read Egyptian Hieroglyphics by Dr. Mark Collier and Dr. Bill Manley.

Paper E-Book Concept

The idea behind paper e-books borrows from the idea of an e-book with a paper surface for easy readability, input and output. Gestures will be supported on the paper e-books demonstrated in the case study booklet.

There are 2 versions: paper e-books and e-books for easy access to users with a variety of income or preferences.

Sospiro e-textbook concept and sketches
Doodles of the concept paper e-book on Photoshop, pardon my messy writing

User Journey

User journey for the Sospiro textbook

Wireframe and Sketches

TOOLS: Adobe Photoshop, Figma
SKILLS: Illustrating, Product Design, Research

To put myself in the position of someone who is completely new to the culture, I decided to create a category textbook from scratch with a topic even I had no idea about: Cutlery!

With research from online resources, I set to work by making illustrations fashioned from each silverware and compiled them into a table setting on the adjacent page to help users see the tools being implemented.

I wrote the book and designed the layout in Adobe InDesign keeping in mind the original design and styling for the Sospiro app from Figma.

Feats!

  • Books provide uninterrupted flow through lessons
  • Plastic transparent cover protects pages from folding and stains
  • Matte paper allows user to write without sacrificing print quality
  • Note taking in textbook saves desk room
  • Standard A4 size to fit most bags to balance portability and comfort

Flaws

  • Soft cover binding doesn't allow the book to lay flat without hands
  • Note section is not intended to replace actual journal or work book because it constantly breaks flow between reading and learning
  • Lack of support for non-earpiece users with pronunciation
  • Textbook page number may be confused with item number diagram

In The Future...

  • Use stapled binding for lay flat feature
  • Add pronunciation support for users with no earpiece
  • Limit function to loading/unloading lessons to keep book as functional and affordable as possible for now
  • Add a function/definition to the vocabulary in category books

Prototype

TOOLS: Adobe Indesign
SKILLS: Print making, Contacting Manufacturers, Testing

I contacted different printing manufacturers for the most optimal paper and binding for the best price and requested samples to help with the decision making.

A fine balance was struck in between choosing a rough matte paper to allow users to turn pages and write but at the same time, not sacrifice the quality of images and print.

Let's Talk!

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Need a team member?
buuchau.chau@gmail.com

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