Where - Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design (CIID)
When - 27-31 July 2015
How - Prototyping, interaction design.

simplytalk hero.png

In a nutshell

In July 2015 I spent a week of my holiday time designing a product at the Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design. I enrolled in a 5-day long workshop focussing on using prototyping tools such Arduino, 3D printing and laser cutting to design, iterate and communicate concepts of products and services. Above all, the workshop helped me practice my interaction design, concepting and prototyping skills. 

The users overturn to switch it on and make themselves available.

The users overturn to switch it on and make themselves available.

The problem

The topic of my two-people team was long distance relationships. After a brainstorming session, we defined the space of the problem to be the following:

  • The lack of shared moments in a natural context that fits into humans daily routine.

  • The forced screen-interactions with pushed-notifications based products (e.g. whatsapp).

  • The ‘control-freak mode’ that some instant messaging apps are likely to trigger in some people with a low self-esteem.

The users 'hug' to record and listen to a message.

The users 'hug' to record and listen to a message.

The solution

To solve these problems we designed ‘’. is a screen free digital object that fits into people’s daily routine. Not based on pushed notifications, can be used for two actions: talking and sending one vocal message. is not a portable device. Users place it in a specific room of their houses and they can only use it if they are close to it.’s additional peculiarity is the way users interact with it: it must be overturned to be switched on and ‘hugged’ to record or listen to a message. 


My role

Our team was composed of  two people and we both worked on all phases of the project in equal parts.

  • Participated in brainstorming sessions

  • Captured and analysed design critique feedback

  • Concepted and iterated our final solution

  • Selected the materials for the external part of prototype as well as the sensors needed to make ‘’ interactive

  • Coded with Arduino

  • Operated laser cutter and sandling machine to refine details of the prototype

  • Wrote the script and shot the video so we could show the functioning of

  • Co-presented the final concept to CIID representatives and workshop participants

Process and examples

Final presentation

Download my CV

It’s here

Contact me


Linkedin: here

Skype: enrico.furfaro 

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