the editor-tool

Thinking about the usability of the tablet app especially we thought we have to create an editor-tool. It doesn´t make sense to have a route on the tablet concerning to a totally different city!

So our next goal now is to make it possible for teachers to create their own route and download that on the iPad. Also the editor-tool will be made for the desktop app, so that teachers can use both known and unknown cities for the routes.

and the name is…

We have been thinking about a name for our app a lot and have been asking the kids that helped us with the usability test as well. We now have one!

Since our game-concept is Orientation and Gaming, we created a new word so we could name our app: Ori-Gami. It is an easy to remember name and it also sounds playful and childlike.

We hope you like it!

the results

Using our collected data with the app, our notes and the questionnaire we are now able to improve the app and know more about the kids thoughts about the usability of the app. Here are some of the results:

–          The kids wish a more colorful design

–          They like the sounds that appear when reaching the waypoint or the end

–          The smiley should not start unhappy but with a more neutral facial expression

–          There have been some technical problems that need to be solved (like a better mark for the actual position…)

We will now try to improve the found out points. It is good to know though, that all the kids in general liked the game a lot and didn´t really have any problems with the work on the iPad – not even the ones who had never had an iPad in their hands before.

The Usability-Test

This week was really exciting for us. We did the usability test for the iPad version of our app. We had 12 kids to work with and it was a lot of fun for both them and us. Thanks again for your help, kids!

For the test we included some special features into the app. The app now can record the GPS-Track including both the walked distance and the needed time. It also documents the touch coordinates on the display so that we can see what the kids touched.

I will let you know about the tests results.

iPad-Day at WWU Münster

On the first iPad-Day we were able to introduce our ideas to a bigger group. Within one day students, professors and all other interested people were able to inform themselves not only about our work with the iPad but also other groups work.

We created a small route around the Schloss, where the iPad-Day took place, to let people try the app by themselves. It was a great success and people were really fascinated by the app and are looking forward for further improvements.

It was also interesting for us to see how the iPad is used in other disciplines like medicine. My special highlight was flying a quadrocopter that is controlled by the iPad.

Preparing for the Usability-Test for the tablet version

We are planning our first Usability Test for the tablet version. That is so exciting! This is our plan:

We will go to a school in Münster with two prepared routes on the iPads. Explaining the students how the iPad works and that we are testing the app, we will walk the route with the kids. There is one kid at a time on both routes followed by two of us. By using the thinking aloud-method we will write the kids thoughts down.

After walking the route we will ask the kids some questions about their previous experience with maps, about the subjective user satisfaction and about what other ideas or improvements the kids have. The questionnaire can be seen below.Questionaire

He made it!

We do have an app working on the iPad right now. Using the ArcGIS-Server and installing a database we were able to try out the first routes. It was a lot of fun and our developer team did a great job – that´s what we think at least.

During the last month I have also been able to write suitable instructions for the kids using the app. And we made some special effects that make the app more playful. I will upload some screenshots soon to show you!

For the experienced GI-professionals of you: The app is using ArcGIS-iOS-SDK, Version 2.2.1. Every route is using FeatureLayers, one FeatureLayer used for one waypoint where the kid has to go to.

One idea – two concepts

While the first idea of the app was to use a desktop computer, there was also another idea to use the app on a tablet. So now Matthias is concentrating on the desktop version and Benni is trying to make a comparable version for the iPad.

Forgetting about the layout and kids-friendly design at first, Benni’s major task right now is to program a suitable version of the app for the iPad. Hard task, but we are sure he will be able to make it!

The app´s history

So we are working on these apps and you don´t know where the idea originally came from! So here is the history of the app.

Last term Thomas had a class called Educational Map-Apps where students had to create an idea for a useful, easy-to-handle app for children that enhances their abilities in spatial thinking or something like that.

Matthias and his group mates had the idea of the app that we are improving now. The first steps of making an app which makes students follow a route on a desktop computer were created as a prototype. They couldn´t finish the whole app due to lack time as the term ended.

But since the idea was so good and Thomas saw the urgency of such an app made for kids, he decided to let other people continue and improve their work. And here we are!