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Development of a digital app for people with epilepsy

‘Aura – adaptive seizure alerts and fast context surveys for pattern recognition’ a smartphone app developed for seizure logging and alerts at HACK EPILEPSY 2015. 

Project Brief

HackEpilepsy was a two-city hackathon organised in Brussels and Atlanta with the focus on improving the lives of people with epilepsy. On 24-26th April, 2015, developers, designers and epilepsy experts (doctors and patients) worked together to build innovative new digital tools for people with epilepsy and their caregivers.

I worked with a team to develop a smartphone app which was called ‘Aura – adaptive seizure alerts and fast context surveys for pattern recognition’.

The pain points

1) Lack of information for bystanders: The people around the person having a seizure are willing to help but have no clue: shock, panic or bystander effect.
2) Boy who cried wolf/ False alarm : Uncomfortable in calling out the possibility of a seizure every morning on the train/ in public.
3)Doctors can use data: People dont log in frequently as diary apps and typing long entries on a cellphone are tedious for small epileptic activity, especially just after a seizure. It results in doctors not finding so much objective data.
4) Faster and smarter logging systems
Due to unavailability of data and further analysis, it is difficult for users to know and confront bad habits, triggers and their combinations which could be particularly dangerous.

 

My contribution:

The visual identity, brainstorming for the business model, wireframes for the app

Visual Identity:

The idea was to create something empowering and symbolic without using the overused visual cues of a brain or a bust silhouette. The aim of the app is to be able to empower the individual living with epilepsy and put him in control of recording his symptoms and triggers.

Some early explorations :

The final logo

We wanted to focus on a more positive note with this digital tool and two of the team members who live with epilepsy everyday, enthusiastically discussed an experience which they called an Aura. They were so excited to talk about their own aura experiences which we thought was apt for our app and hence it was named AURA.

The Business Model

Apart from the visual design, I contributed ideas for the business model of the app in a brainstorm using the oft used Business Model Canvas by Alex Osterwalder.

The concept and wireframes for the app

Our Value proposition focused on the user’s need of having a tool which is simple, easy and fast to help her/him log her seizure and triggers as well as alert people around and the caretakers when help is needed. The concept is that the user can be able to press a button on his/her phone as soon as s/he feels as if there is a seizure coming on. A timer goes off which can be switched off in case of a false alarm otherwise if help is needed it send a message to a caretaker community. The app also starts showing helpful images for people nearby if the user collapses during one of his/ her seizures. Some images depicting the concept are shown below.

Although, a prototype ADK was developed in the two day hackathon to demonstrate the concept, endeavours to make it a functional app available to the public is in progress.The images show below are screenshots from the prototype( ADK) developed at the end of the hackathon.

The Hackathon experience is documented in detail here: Making of Aura at HackEpilepsy.

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