Rapid Ideation! Let’s get started

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The fall session with a brand new Innovation Lab youth team has begun. We opened by introducing students to the basics of mobile design through an activity we created to help them quickly come up with an app idea. The Mobile Design 101 activity gets young people thinking about what their phones can do, what they wish their phones could do, and how these functionalities can address concerns or opportunities in different communities. We started by asking:  What can your phone do? Then we presented questions based on a specific topic area–sometimes called a problem statement. For this activity we focused on public art, so we asked three questions:

  • How do we make public art more discoverable?
  • How do we make public art more tied to the community?
  • How do we support public art?

Next, the young people picked the question they wanted their apps to address. For example, if they chose “How do we make public art more discoverable?” they would say “This is my app [App Name] and it makes public art more discoverable by”… and explain their app here. After choosing a topic, the team broke into smaller groups and conducted some user research by interviewing people around Youth Radio (which was also a fun way to spark conversation across the building). Then they had to integrate insights from their user research, their understanding of the phone’s functionality, and their own creativity to quickly come up with a solution for their question. By quickly I mean less than 20 minutes. And our team did it!

So what were their ideas? Watch the videos below to see our youth team present their app ideas–derived from rapid ideation–designed to make public art more discoverable and tied to the community.


Public Paintbrush


Puzzles for the People

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