There are multiple ways to get a virtual object to appear on screen, even before considering AR marker vs markerless implementation options. Some of those options include:
Tap on trees where hammock spots appear. User can walk through AR hammock lines.
PRO: Visibility in hammock spot options. Minimal gestures.
CON: Options are limited to spots the system finds.
KEEP: Selecting interaction for wireframes and prototyping.
Drag a hammock-like object around the screen and drop it into place.
PRO: Ability to scrub across an area to see spot potentials. [note] I hope you don't mind that I didn't diagram these. [/note]
CON: Increases need for content and assets. Forces the user to spatially assess the scene before making a decision.
DISCARDED: Lack of transparency in hang spot options and increased user movement.
Draw a line from any point to another on the screen to see if a hammock will fit there.
PRO: User has control of choosing potential spots.
CON: Requires too much trial and error to find a hang spot.
DISCARDED: For difficult usability. Not a comfortable angle to hold phone and draw.
This case defines the task of scanning a forested area for ideal tree matches, selecting a hammock line, and sending a hazard report.
On a scan of the environment for hammock spots, a user may encounter any of the following scenarios:
The scan scenario modeled in the following flow diagram includes finding spots and hazards.
Multiple scans of an area can be connected and mapped together. Requires user to allow GPS on their phone.
Lets the user know they are entering AR mode, and to be aware of their surroundings. Asks them to please be still while scanning, and app scans best in landscape mode.
App begins scan of environment for applicable hammock spots.
We want to let the user know what is happening during their scan, but too much detail isn’t useful.
Scan is complete and user can walk around the scene and view hang spots. Shows hazard alerts for trees that may not be safe.
User taps on a tree that contains multiple hang points overlapping one another. It is not uncommon for a single tree to be an anchor for multiple hangs, all within the same height range. When the crowded spot is selected, it is effectively selecting the tree itself, all hammock lines connected to that tree are highlighted.
User taps on a hammock line. Any other lines fade. Detailed measurements are visible for selected line.
Visible measurements on line selection include hang point, distance between trees, hang angle, and tension.
When the user taps anywhere on the screen that isn’t an affordance, the scene returns to exploration view, with all hang spots and hazards in neutral.
Selected lines remain overlayed in a fixed postion allowing users to hang their straps and view through the app to check accuracy.
App shows damage alerts for trees that may not be safe to hang from. Includes hollow spots and cracks. User can send report to tree database and, optionally, local park management.
Allowing users to report hazards instead of having hazards logged automatically aims to solve for two issues. First, it presents the user with a responsibility to the trees, and gives them a small task to perform, a helpful action for the environment. Secondly, reporting hazards allows for a human assessment of the potential hazard, reducing false positives, and helping train the system on hazard tracking.
From here, users can edit their hammock model, toggle measurement view, or view their trip history. Hammock profile information can change for each trip, the contextual menu offers a quick way to adjust hammock length and sit height.
Wireframes are useful as a birds-eye-view of a system, and as a reference document for states and flows. Though, as testing and development proceed, wireframes can quickly fall out of sync with the evolving design.
For user testing an augmented reality experience, marker-based prototypes are quick and effective, even if the final product is markerless.
This test focuses on the core functionality of the app: selecting hammock spots.
Prep a grove with AR markers, each attached to the trunk of a tree as a representation of a hang point. Users will be provided with a mobile prototype on their phones that is set to scan any markers that match their hammock model.