For this assignment I was given the topic of snow/ ice removal to research. I started by reading the Ethnology Primer and IDEO Bootcamp. I learned a lot from these two digital booklets, mostly about the process one takes in product design/ ideation. Some of the processes I've learned about for graphic design are similar to product design processes.
I interviewed three people and I always started with the question: What is your preferred tool to remove snow from flat surfaces. Out of the three people two of them were college students, one lived at home, the other at an on campus house. I choose to interview them because they both have to clear their own snow and they have lived in snowy places their whole life. The last one was a home owner from my neighborhood, who has lived in the area for 30 years and has grown up around the changing technology.
The two college kids said they preferred a shovel because it is easy to use, no maintenance is required, maneuverable, and inexpensive. From further questioning I realized that they didn't prefer a shovel but it is what they could afford. They would much rather have a snowblower to remove snow from surfaces, but only if it were a big area.
The older gentleman preferred a self propelled snowblower because it is easier for him to use because of his physical limitations and the fact that a shovel can be hard on his body. He said he uses a shovel when there is light snow or when he cannot get the snowblower into tight spaces.
Next I watched youtube videos of people shoveling snow to observe how they shoveled snow. The video below is a person form LA who has never shoveled snow in his life so he is completely new to the idea. I thought it was a good opportunity to watch a new person.
Lastly I searched for information on snow removal and came across this really cool info graphic!
One of the major problems is that people get hurt using shovels every year, but snowblowers are too expensive. So I need to come up with an inexpensive solution that doesn't put a lot of stress on the body.
Ice is also a major problem and can only be dealt with by salting (Which can be harmful to the environment) or chipping away at it (Which is strenuous work and can damage the surface underneath). So I need a to create a solution that isn't harmful to the environment but does not require a lot of hard work.