Faster design of spatial data interfaces for enterprise use cases


BadVR is revolutionizing the way data is visualized by optimizing the way their remote teams leverage ShapesXR as a VR prototyping tool throughout the design process to create a truly immersive experience that’s faster and at a fraction of the cost.

Design process 2X MORE EFFICIENT

ShapesXR enabled a more streamlined communication and ideation process cutting the time needed to create each design concept from 4 to 2 hours while reducing the number of iterations needed from 6 to 3

From design to Unity 3X FASTER

Having a more streamlined design process, the team could start implementing validated ideas in Unity in just one week instead of the three weeks previously dedicated to design sprints.

BETTER products FASTER to market

Facilitating communication within the team and less development resources involved during the early design, leads to a more streamlined process and the ability to meet tight deadlines for clients.

The challenge

Data is often inherently spatial and temporal, yet currently the dominant visualization method relies on flat interfaces. Weather data is a typical example that’s often seen from a top-down map perspective.

Translating user requirements for the visualization and manipulation of data spatially into an intuitive, user-friendly experience is very challenging with current2D design tools. This was made even more difficult by the fact that the whole BadVR product team was delocalized and working across different time zones.

Design challenges involved the creation of an interface that had simple, yet powerful, controls. From direct data manipulation to playback controls and annotation, there are many necessary features that must harmoniously coexist and support one another, in single and multi-user use cases.

“Immersive interface design is still in it’s early stages and - until now - there weren’t many tools geared for the early stages of the AR/VR design process. ShapesXR provides a perfect solution, and has been very valuable to our team. We look forward to using ShapesXR for our future projects!” - Suzanne Border CEO, BadVR

The process

ShapesXR was used during the initial ideation sessions for spatial brainstorming based upon early 2D sketches that were imported as images (1). Beginning in a more ‘low-fi’ atmosphere, the BadVR team focused on blocking UI elements and experimenting with UX possibilities to support user goals. From there, concepts became more refined and were brought up at a higher fidelity, where crucial UX questions were discovered and addressed early on in the process (2). This was achieved by an individual designer who work autonomously without the use of any game engine, and then during multi-user collaborative design sessions with a developer and the product owner. The import of external 3D models was utilized to enhance the fidelity of the UI elements being worked on.

At this stage, the goal was to explore and create the entire user flows for the final product. The stages features within ShapesXR allowed to build 3D frames and build a storyboard of the whole experience. In addition to that, the team used bodystorming techniques to simulate the various behaviors and logic of the interface by manipulating the elements in the space freely. During the last step of the design process, the finalized interface was assembled in its various states, documented, then built out in Unity using BadVR’s internal SDK elements (3).

Value provided by ShapesXR

ShapesXR enabled us to directly prototype our immersive application in an actual immersive environment, using immersive tools. It facilitated strong communication between team members during design thinking sessions and delivered a new level of immediacy during review sessions, which helped speed up feedback loops and more quickly advance the design process.

The outcome of this project was an easy translation of ShapesXR-generated UI elements into native Unity environments, increased communication and collaboration during our design processes, and overall – a much faster, higher quality design workflow, with better overall outputs, requiring less iterations on design and fewer errors discovered during user testing.

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About BadVR

BadVR is an LA-based start-up that uses immersive technology to empower organizations with the ability to -quite literally - step inside their data. BadVR makes the discovery of valuable insights, faster, easier, and more universally accessible to all. The goal of this project was to create a collaborative tool that utilizes VR to enable users to collaboratively visualize and manipulate complex weather data: AtmosVR.

AtmosVR is an immersive weather visualization app created for industry professionals – such as weather intelligence and meteorological practitioners – who ingest, analyze, synthesize, and communicate insights from complex geospatial, weather, and weather-adjacent datasets.

Live stream event

A live discussion with BadVR about their design process for AtmosXR, a revolutionary weather visualization app.