The client wanted to build the world’s first graphical AI development tool. They weren’t clear on exactly what that would mean, or how it would work.
Our job was to decipher the esoteric world of machine learning and artificial intelligence and present it visually. This would help to accelerate AI development and make the technology accessible to developers without advanced machine learning degrees.
As always, I began with gaining an understanding of our users by talking to them. I have experience in software development, so I had some empathy for our users and and an understanding of their context.
Once I understood the problem we were meant to solve and the people we were solving it for, I began to sketch potential solutions and put them in front of the team.
When the concepts were basically validated through sketching, I produced high-fidelity mockups and animations to present to the client as prototypes to gather feedback.
Tasty snacks were an essential part of my process. Every week the studio provided amazing food, without which the project surely would have failed.
We held an event during which the team explained our point of view on artificial intelligence, and the way we approached designing interfaces for new technologies.
Fast Company published an article covering our work, in which Mark perfectly captured the essential challenge of the project:
It took many hours before the design team could begin to understand and conceptualize what Sanchez was trying to do. “I think good designers can ride shotgun with a surgeon or jet pilot or AI programmer, and listen to them, and extract out of them things that are true to design and are true to their profession,” Rolston says. “That [didn’t] happen without hours of conversations where I [had] barely a thread or grasp on what Matt was saying.”