My first steps in UX.

Ariel Acosta
6 min readDec 29, 2020


Challenge 1. Design Thinking.


Life challenge us every single minute in our path, sometimes nothing is like we expect or we imagine, and that’s require an exercise of revitalization in some ways, in order to achieve goals, purposes, and fill out our personal satisfaction.

Humans are not constricted to stay in an eternal state of mind, and always increase their needs in proportion with the requirements of society and their own environment.

In this exercise of thinking we understand how important is the analysis into a problem-solving process before to offers the best solution toward a real needs satisfactions.

In order to response as a designer, we made an exercise about how we are able to create real connection we the users throughout his needs and feelings, and offer a facilities for their development. As UX designer, Ironhack challenge me to make and schema of design thinking about an specific application and the ways that we suggest to improve the features of it. This application that we took as reference is Citymapper, launched in 2011 in London for their users, responsible for show up the whole spectrum of public transit and mapping service, which integrate data, for all urban modes of transport, including these sorts of modality: cycling and driving, walking and the public transport of the city (metro, bus, rail, tram and ferry).

Scope of project.

Our task is to create a feature for this mobile app that solves the pain of having to purchase different public transport tickets by different channels.

However we are considering that users already have all their information on the mobile app. they will neither need to login nor enter any data when paying/checking-out and also we are not focus about security issues and other deepest limitations, just we going to find a quick and user-friendly solution.

Design Thinking process: How we get it on board?

· Empathized

What is the main problem that users are facing?

Whereas the application, has already solve a part of their content, some of the main problems of the urban mobility fall to:

- The different amount of public transport tickets the users have to purchase.

- The process of buying tickets is annoying as result of these one comes in paper or plastic cards formats, and when the travelers want to go from point A to B, they have to face (queues, vending machine that are out of order etc.)

This uncomfortable situation flow into a real pain when the users want facilities and they can’t have it accordingly.

Who is my audience?

Customers who don’t have the correct facilities to transport appropriate, taking part of their precious time, delay their routine, causing frustration in some ways, and generate a non-conformism well-being.

Conducting a necessary interview to 5 people different all of them, I take in mind the follow random indicators: age, residence places, frequency of transport user, mobile app. that use most, concurrence place and hours.

I realized when I ask for Cittymapper, more than 60% of them don’t like to use it, they feels that they don’t have a quick response when they come distracted by the app. functionality. Sometimes the physical tickets demand to buy in a bus stop machine and they wants right now have a less possible contact we the machine screen and buttons, they are truly concern for these special circumstances that world is coming through with the virus spreads. Other reason is that they lose too much time in the buying process, (broke machine, queues, finding the good one,) cost them an unnecessary delay.

Travelers who trust in the app. eventually could lose it, if the immediately improvements comes late.

Also, in this analysis, we have to take in consideration that exists a current concurrence in the market such as: Google Maps, Waze, Transit, Sygic, who can beat Citymappers if solutions and low rating comes ultimately late.

· Define

Based in the early conclusions as result an emphatic phase, we are able to create an schema who give us an clear idea of the problem.

- Travelers forget which tickets is the right one for use when they access to the public transport and they getting confused.

- Paper and plastic tickets are in a risk to be loss.

- Broke machines, necessity of less contact with screen functionality.

- People get confuse with Large Menu Options in the screen who cause delays in this machine queue.

- Users prefer a new mobile app. rather than use a Citymapper app.

- Environment concern since there is a waste of paper tickets.

Most of the people who feel uncomfortable, aren’t residence in the place, foreigner travelers suffers the worst part when they can’t find a simply way to go into the city or interest destinations. In that sense, I built a point of view by combining three elements: user, needs and insight that we lead us to the rest of the design project.

· Ideate

First are all, I understand that tickets machine are still necessary, this is because there are people who like to buy and use paper tickets or don’t feels comfortable using a tech solution through a mobile app. since they don’t trust their financial information on it. And also, this devices are useful when people have emergencies and don’t have access to mobile or web services.

However, we handle another compatible designs options for users who wants a quickly, easier, and safe alternative.

Now we will offer an innovative solution, in order to provide a source material for build prototypes.

My idea is to concrete a safety, faster and cheaply idea for user who want to enjoy a virtual way for purchase their tickets. Sorts of wallet mobile integrate.

- Obviously, that required a new design.

- As a part as user research process, we also have to know the financial options that the Public Transport System offer in a correlation: price — urban modes transport. (Bus, Metro, Tram, Skyline Train, Ferry, probably have a different cost among them)

- The app. has to show up the urban modes transport available in the specific city, Ex. It’s not make sense, if we incorporate a Ferry menu display in a city where it doesn’t exist a fluvial system. Having an active location, each places have to incorporate the patterns validate by zones automatically in real time.

- In order to go from point A to B, users can quickly select in one click the modality of transport, and the price has to show up for each one of them: Bus, Metro, Subway, Tram, Skyline Train, Ferry; them jump to the next option.

- Easy implementation prototypes: One way, Daily, Weekly, 15 days, and Monthly passes tickets for each transport modality.

- Financial information required in order to register the payments: Credit, Debit card, PayPal and Apple/Google pay.

- As result, the idea that I created for this case is incorporated in the redesign a “Check out button” in one click, accepting the transaction and validate the current ticket and get it ready to be used.

- A QR/code as proof of purchase and validate the ticket in each terminal: bus, train, metro, etc.

- Possibilities to be shared with other users, and saved in the Apple wallet or Google pay.

· Prototype


After a rigorous process of observation, listen and engagement with this conversation I draw some conclusions in order to getting involve and understand the big picture of the problem. I noticed how the empathy becomes a fundamental piece of a human-centered design process, and how I understood the reveals, thoughts and values that people can show when they are facing a problem. It was a good sign on how we learn with a “fresh sets of eyes” in order to create a solid solutions. When audience clearly anticipate its needs, more specialized designs that target those needs will be favored. In other words, the problem solving process for a designer is crucial when we want to create an interaction with users, but always understanding their culture and the context where they are. I really enjoy this challenge and hopefully still there are a lot of things to learn in this UX universe.

Please feel free to leave any suggestion and comments.

Thank you for reading!!