"In both aesthetic and functional design, successful solutions speak to our uniqueness as well as to our commonalities."
Maryann Impeduglia earned a Bachelor's Degree in Drawing & Painting in 1980 from University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia. Working in commercial art for two decades, she applied fundamental concepts of light, color and balance to create print and marketing collateral. Clients ranged from small business to Fortune 500 companies, from non-profit to education institutions, for work and for pleasure.
After taking a hiatus from her career to raise a family, she earned her Master's Degree in Information Design and Technology. Her interest in design extended beyond the aesthetically pleasing to embrace new technologies that offered challenges in visualizations of large datasets. She studyied and applied techniques for effective human-computer interactions, creating a portfolio of software design projects for professors and clients alike. PlantTracker® is one of those projects.
For garden enthusiasts, the Atlanta Botanical Garden (ABG) offers a wealth of flora accessible through direct observation in natural habitats. This world-class facility constantly seeks to improve the user experience. By leveraging technology, visitors can benefit byobtaining more detailed information in situ, and to help navigate throughout the expansive gardens. How can this be accomplished — introducing technologyin a non-technical environment — without destroying the naturalistic setting that visitors come to expect?
The project was originally begun in an academic setting (learning about user-interface design). Thus, efforts were focused towards the membership subgroup to narrow the scope to a manageable timetable. Much of this research was team-driven. Later research was done primarily independently, to develop the businessThe primary challenge in on-site testingwas in distinguishing members from non-members, as there is no visual cue for this distinction.
The user-centered design process was broken down into four phases, A team approach was taken, and all team members participated in all aspects of the process. A website was created to reflect findings (and include Georgia Tech's alma mater!): Atlanta Buzztanical Gardens.
Throughout and at the conclusion of the user-centered design process, rough comprehensives were created to illustrate form factor and provide drafts of interactions.