[Prototype Proposal] SIGN


SIGN is a research data collection & social experiment website which records and collects people’s reaction toward certain signs. The data collected by this website will be mainly used for study “ set psychology “(In psychology, a set is a group of expectations that shape experience by making people especially sensitive to specific kinds of information. —-Wikipedia).  


SIGN, as a mobile data collection tool with only one click to be shared, will be much more efficient for the psychologist to get a large amount of data in short time than collecting data by asking people filling out questionnaires.Except for researchers, data being collected by this site can easily be approached by another field. For instance,  UI designers are able to utilize sign better to achieve their goal (such as providing a better user experience or leading users to the certain page) with the data collected by SIGN.









2.0 Version



Development Stages

Phase 1: Define

What is SIGN?

This website is mainly for study “ set psychology “(In psychology, a set is a group of expectations that shape experience by making people especially sensitive to specific kinds of information. —-Wikipedia). In order to get better organized and meaningful data, users are required to input their information to start on this website. When users get into the testing part, their reaction toward the website such as scroll or click will be recorded, and they will also get the corresponding outcome.There will be a continuous image in the middle, and an arrow pointing right edge on the side. The program will notice if the user clicks the arrow twice, (which means they already know there’s nothing on the other side of the arrow but they still chose to do it), or never click the arrow, then giving the percentage of how many people did same decision as him or her.


The expectation of this website is to show users initial reaction toward the conflict between a wired sign which leading users to nothing and the information given by website.


What is the problem being solved?

The main challenge of this interactive is to eliminate possible interference factors.

This main problem come up with many detail problems, such as information choice. I want the user to know and go through the information, however, I don’t want the user to be attracted by the information too much, or it’s gonna affect user’s reaction.

Then the information has to be something that users are able to recognize the continuity of the information while noticing the sign at the same time.  In order to achieve this, I started using some news in English, or poetry in minority language as the continuous information.  Then, I decide to use shapes as the information. However, there is feedback that the shape still makes them think about something else. Eventually, I used professor Chao’s idea, using numbers to guide users. 


Another challenge is to prove that “ the user already know that nothing is gonna happen after clicking the arrow, but they still chose to click”. 

Therefore, the program of SIGN should be able to recognize and people’s reaction( how many times did the users clicked the arrow )


Who is the audience?

Researchers and people who are interested in the research project,

or people who are shared with this website will be the audience of SIGN.


Phase 2: Shape


The initial idea is inspired by a psychological experiment about crowd psychology. I started to think about that people always have some certain expectation or curiosity toward signs too, which called ” set psychology” (In psychology, a set is a group of expectations that shape experience by making people especially sensitive to specific kinds of information. —-Wikipedia)


  • What are the precedents


The First version of this interactive project was called “FootPrint” Interactive project. It is a physical project which stimulates people to think why did they choose to stand on the footprint that obviously facing nowhere. This project could be set in museum or galleries. The footprint will be pasted on the floor and it would be facing an empty wall, a column, or the gap between artworks.

This project is not really practical, also, it’s hard to find the suitable place which allows me to do it so I stopped it.



HIII MUSEUM is the second version of  “FootPrint”,which brings the “FootPrint” idea into digital media. HIII MUSEUM  is an App that allows users to discover the museum and exhibitions by themselves. And the “footprint project” is like a little interesting bonus inside the app. Users can view the museum, if they are interested in the footprint and click it, there will be questions asking why they chose to come here.

This project failed because the “Museum Part “of this project takes the whole app too far from the original idea.




This time, the media is still as 2.0 version, it comes out as an app.  Users are free to explore the app. There are signs underneath or on the side of each page of the app, which lead people to a certain destination. The goal of this project is to collect data of people’s reaction toward the certain sign.

It’s an interesting game concept, however, the guidance quality is too strong to get people’s initial reaction toward the Sign. 


Screen Shot 2018-03-08 at 5.35.46 PM

Phase 3: Make/ Prototypes

  • What were the prototype stages and what did you learn from each prototype?

Till the final prototype, I have made 4 different prototype projects in total.  During the process, I got a better understanding of eliminating elements of design is much more useful and difficult strange of expressing the idea.


Phase 4: Launch

Future Development:

The usage of SIGN could be burdened, allowing it to serve for more social research projects instead of just one. Then, the challenge will be how to make it easier for researchers to express their research questions, and how to attract more people to use it.

Is there marketing involved? Who is responsible for creating that plan? Who is making the creative/assets

Government or universities are potential associations which could be the developer of SIGN Data Collection.



Is there anything that still distracts users from their initial reaction?


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