Lo-fi Prototype


The purpose of this milestone was to brainstorm the basic architecture, design, and functionality of our website while focusing on the needs of our users.


Critique: Why are 3 personas elderly?

More of the stakeholders we interviewed were elderly than young. Maybe older people are more likely to own a house than younger people.

Critique: How do you plan to use these [personas] as you move forward?

More the process of the development of our personas that is useful than the finished product. We found ourselves thinking from the point of view of an older person and making sure our website is accessible to people who may have difficulty with small fonts & buttons, since many of our interviewees tended to be elderly. And whether or not our users are elderly, inexperienced web users, children (maybe researching energy projects for school), or somebody who is comfortable with the web, we aimed for greater usability, and having created the personas in Milestone 3 greatly helped the process by personalizing the previously ambiguous user.

Critique: Socioeconomic status too constrained.

Socioeconomic status among the stakeholders we interviewed tended towards the middle to upper ranges in the traditional socioeconomic status indicators. This, as well as specific comments gleaned from our initial interviews, indicated to us that people have concerns about the high costs of alternative energy systems. Since then, we have broadened the scope of our website to include technologies and techniques for improving energy efficiency in ones' home. This change in scope will go far in appealing to stakeholders from a broader economic range.

Critique: No quotes from affinity diagram in persona.

Since completing our affinity diagram, we have done eleven more interviews, and a lot of the material we got from the personas was collected from them.


Before brainstorming the website interface, we created a content flow chart which helped us develop more explicitly organized categories. We then diverged and came up with 9 to 10 sets of lo-fi paper prototypes.

image 1 image 2


Home (step 1)

Initially, we thought of having our users begin by entering their estimated budget and displaying the various tasks within their monetary range that they could pursue.

image 4

However, based on our research, we believe our users would most likely begin to make their home more green through small, less expensive tasks. So, we are considering leaving out the initial box that asks our users what their budgetary range is and by default starting at our smallest range ($0-100). What do you think?

Let's say our user is interested in efficient light bulbs. He/she clicks on a light bulb in the model home which brings up a dialogue box with:

  • basic information i.e. cost, payback
  • an option to learn more
  • an option to act, i.e. find out how to obtain the bulb

image 5

Learn (step 2)

Our user inputs their zip code and a distance range. The map shows that Ron C has efficient bulbs and he's only a block away! From here, we can see:

  • Ron's basic profile information
  • instructions on how Ron went about making his home more green
  • an option to act, i.e. find out how to obtain the bulb

image 6 image 7

Act (step 3)

Here we can see suppliers, contractors, or any place where one can obtain services or products that pertain to energy efficiency and alternative energy.

image 8

Share (step 4)

Finally, we encourage users to register and share their own experiences with energy efficiency and alternative energy.

image 9 image 10


  • Revisit lo-fi and think of more approaches
  • Scenarios