Team: Xiran Yang & Eva Yipeng Chen
Define the Problem – A Story
Xiran is an international student studying in New York. She is originally born and raised in China, where most of her families and friends live. She has a 12-hour time difference with people she loves back home.
Since she moved to New York, she has been trying to built active connections with her families and friends with the help of different digital tools. WeChat and Instagram are the two apps that she used most often.
She has noticed two major differences between this digital relationship and her physical relationship she has with her family and friends.
- She is very aware of the time difference she has with her mom. But even if she always tries to call at time when she thinks her mom would be available, she has failed to have a conversation with her mom. Same case vice versa. She would leave a message, but sometimes her mom complains that they non longer talk frequently to each other and she feels sad that Xiran does not seem to miss her at all.
- Sometimes she would have certain happy moments or sad moments that she wanted to share immediately with her friends. But after they fail to respond and they ended up having a conversation some time later, those strong emotions have already gone away.
The time difference and long distance between two physical spaces have got Xiran to wonder if there could be a type of simple interaction that can not only deliver each other’s love, but also present one’s strong feelings at certain moments in the form of a digital tool, without it necessarily be a long in-depth conversation.
Due to geographical and time differences, we rely heavily on different digital tools to connect with family and friends who live far away from us. Our connection is often reflected as text messages, audio calls or video chats. The biggest difference between digital interaction and our traditional face-to-face interaction is that we lost the opportunity to deliver feelings and emotions using body gestures and subtle movements. Instead, our communication rely heavily on text and language. However, at many times we find it hard to have a long in-depth talk with each other due to the time difference, yet a simple and efficient text message fails to fully express our emotions.
Therefore, we would like to explore if there exists a new type of interaction that encourages people to move when communicating through digital tools. And thus allow us to better express our emotions in a new and interesting way to people living at different time zones from us as an alternative besides video chat or text messages.
- Where are you from？
- Do you know the time difference between where you are right now and the place where you are from?
- How do you contact with your close family and friends back home?
- How often do you contact each other?
- How do you figure out the time when you guys talk? Do you just send message whenever you want or would you consider about the time difference and schedule regular meetings?
- Do you prefer to text / or call / or video chat & why?
- If your family or friend fail to answer your message/call in time, what do you often do?
- How do you communicate / interact with your family & friends when your are physically together?
- How do you find your interaction with them different from when you are physically together?
- Are you satisfied with the interaction method you have now?
- Are there things you want to improve about your interaction?
11. Anything you want to add?
flight route map:
Here at ITP, we have many people work and study far away from their famlity & friends and have a significant time difference with them. We interviewed some people to see if the have the common problems.
- Where are you from
- . How Often do you contact with your friends and families back home?
- 3.What do you use to contact them?
- Do you have moments in which you really want to talk to them but they are busy, or vice versa?
- What would you do if so?
- Are you satisfied