The core project focused on creation of an innovative interface for a new electric cooktop.
Leading UX design for the program required close collaboration with Human Factors, manufacturing and product management. Additionally, close synthesization with Consumer Insights created the foundation for decisions based on information from direct consumer feedback and physical product testing.
We decided on a final direction after each concept for the electric cooktop was developed and further refined by in-depth user centered research. Subsequent testing resulted in the highest usability score ever given to a user interface in GE Appliances.
Ideas ranged from high fidelity displays and controls on the physical product to little-to-no touch and primarily gestural based controls, as well as removal of the entire interface and implementation on a remote device
Exploring future possibilities for the electric cooktop enhanced our design of near term product. These products that will launch within competitive segmentation in a very unique, well thought out way.
A year and a half in the making by GE, Undercurrent and Sistelnetworks the pen is what Caroline Baumann, director of the Cooper-Hewitt, calls “a tool for a transformative visitor experience.” The initial concept came from Local Projects in collaboration with Manhattan architecture superstars Diller Scofidio + Renfro. This digital stylus gives new meaning to how one interacts with the world around them. Like so much of today’s consumer technology, the pen is based on the concept of “point... then click.”*
A highly talented team of GE Industrial Designers was selected to assist in the design of the pen. After an initial kick off, a particular direction, design and purpose was selected and the concept was brought from inception to production
A brand centered CME project to design a range of breakfast products leading the design direction in form, color, and finish for the next generation of the Kenwood KMix suite.
This range of products is targeting Kenwood’s “Expression” consumer. Their persona embodies boldness and unconstrained adventure. An Expressionistic product should be edgy and non-traditional, forms and shapes in colors that stand out from convention.
The Expressionist consumer has a color and material palate that is bold and more striking than contemporary kitchen interior design.
Splashes of color can still be seen as trendy in the green/blue/lime family but no primary colors. A prevailing theme is increasingly muted earth tones in green and blue hues.
A purposeful design direction away from silver metals and full saturated color was chosen.
Subtle integrations of form and texture can be seen throughout the home.
Matte surfaces are a growing trend. A clear movement away from high gloss/flashy surfaces and metals impact even high-profile products.
Combinations with ceramics and concrete in grey tones complement the bright colors.
A muted mint green with a slightly warmed hue
A thoughtful combination of surface finishes
Accents of copper to bring familiarity
Simple, crisp forms
GE Corporate developed a new high-speed business model for new product development based on the start-up philosophy as expressed by Eric Ries in his book “The Lean Startup”.
Using this new business model, within 3 months I took concepts from first sketches to final hyper realistic models, a timeline never before done so quickly. Consumers interacted with these two models that were installed in an appliance flagship store in Indianapolis. Consumers enjoyed interacting with the models to the point that they wished to purchase them
Kickoff sketches focused on concept of bringing a unique consumer delighter to a product that worked with the VBL of the entire GE cross product lineup.
Aligning to the fundamentals of Fastworks, ideas were moved through design processes at dynamic speed.
Time between initial sketches, to final renderings, website pages and physical moving models in actual stores took mere weeks, not months to years.
The project launch was initially focused on energy as utility companies begin to implement Demand Response incentives and pricing. The Design team at GE saw this as an opportunity to give the consumer the control they needed while at the same time delighting them. The initiative was later pivoted to focus on consumer convenience and appliance control and launched as GE Connected Home.
The initiative was led by an industrial designer and two interaction designers. This three-person team fostered an intuitive collaboration of design including aspects from apps, product interfaces, package design and physical product.
GE’s first energy monitoring device was the Nucleus which gave the control and knowledge of the smart grid to consumers’ homes, empowering them to make more informed energy choices.
The Nucleus worked in concert with many other GE products including smart appliances, programmable thermostats, and software applications, providing a comprehensive energy management solution for consumers.
I led the industrial design for all GE connected home products that centered around the concept of collecting and storing individual household energy use and cost data from smart electricity meters, presenting it to consumers through a simple and intuitive desktop computer and smart phone user applications.
A complete product offering developed from consumer discovery, purchase, set-up, daily use and upgrades throughout life.
I led the design of the physical products, packaging and core product experiences in collaboration with the UI team. Working with our team’s human factors expert led to my designing products that were optimized for fit and feel.
Our team set out with one unique challenge, what if you could design a programmable thermostat wasn’t programmed on the actual product? Months of consumer research led us to determine what were the essential features on the thermostat for the consumer. This allowed us to minimalize the physical product.
Remote control of temperature and mode are adjustable on a consumer’s mobile device from any location, on an application specific to the thermostat.
All scheduling, settings and adjustments are done on a PC with a harmoniously designed application specific to the thermostat.
A total of five themes were presented on conceptualized boards to each consumer with concepts ranging from full LCD dashboard on home walls to watch display sizes of just temperature. Our discussion of these concepts with consumers guided our final design direction.
mix of gas - electric untilitys.
all electric utilities
This innovative display required months of communication between me and our design team and manufacturing to ensure all details were perfected.
Our project goal of a clean appearance drove a cross-continent commitment to necessary challenges and focus closely on the details that produced a truly elevated final product.
While I was at George P Johnson, I didn’t focus on individual product design but more on how the physical world around us impacts our feelings and emotions of products.
My knowledge of light, form, space and texture has helped facilitate a wide expanse of products and concepts.