Developments during the last week-and-a-half…

It’s been a busy last week and a half, my subject project has developed in numerous directions as I search for a solution to the problem of asthma medication adherence in young people aged 16 to 30. I am now thoroughly into the design stage of the process and I have produced produced around 10 moodboards and information boards to illustrate further research.

I believe that I have found, and come to terms with the the main issues of the project much more intimately this week. Looking back to a couple of weeks ago; I remember feeling quite blurred about the underlying themes that I needed to pluck from my research.

Firstly, this week I have realised that rather than just considering the condition; ‘Asthma’ and what individuals with the condition think and feel about their condition, I must look more broadly at the condition we all share; being a human being. Put simply, I am finding lots of potential ideas, not by questioning medication adherence issues, but instead by considering human (and animal, which of course is what humans are) behaviour and psychology:
– Why do people choose to do and not to do things?
– What stimulates people to make decisions?
– How and why do people remember and forget things?
A start point for exploring these primary points was to produce a moodboard to create a visual collection of all the everyday things everybody has to take part in, either passively, or with knowledge; this included everything from seeing to eating. I then used this as a platform for further research and as a creativity spring for producing ideas. For instance, take the example of the sense: ‘smelling’; I explored the topic in detail and discovered that there are links between memory and scents, dreams and scents, emotions and scents, productivity and scents, among many others. I felt this was a key point in my project and is enabling me to come up with a much more varied and considered range of ideas and I’m starting to recognise the importance of integration as a key theme within the project. I found a TV documentary by Desmond Morris to be particularly interesting in stripping back human behaviour to it’s key elements and I am going to read his book; ‘The Naked Ape’ for some further research:

http://watchdocumentary.org/watch/the-human-animal-episode-01-the-language-of-the-body-video_d3169faa1.html

Secondly, up until only a few days ago I realised that I have been taking one assumption for granted during this whole project; that I should be designing a device which delivers medicine into the patients body. However, on reflection of my brief I have established that this is not necessarily the best outcome. The brief is to design a device which improves adherence to asthma treatment. So far I have found that there is some new found creative freedom in designing without having to consider the workings of the inhaler itself so I am going to continue to explore both this option and that of changing the design of the medication delivery device.

I have plans to carry out primary research this coming week, with the aim of this being to better understand the behaviour of people and how they interact with objects within their daily routines to better understand what integrates well, and what doesn’t.

To summarise, the key themes which I have uncovered this week are: behaviour and integration.

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