Students Challenged to Create Privacy Conscious Solutions for Connectivity in Online Design Jam

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

73 students created innovative solutions to a privacy design challenge at uXperience | Think Privacy – the annual fall design camp hosted by the Stratford School of Interaction Design and Business – competing for more than $7,400 in prizes. Students were challenged to design a solution inspired by the increased need for virtual connection brought on by COVID-19.  

The three winning solutions – Clubhouse, an after-school club, Bondfire, an interactive storytelling platform, and Secretum, an open-source, decentralized social media platform controlled by users – were created by teams consisting of students from Global Business & Digital Arts, Engineering, Computer Science, and Sociology and Legal Studies. 

“The designers of Clubhouse followed a systematic design process and created a well-thought-out product which considered the needs of different types of users on the platform (i.e., teachers, parents, children),” commented Sana Maqsood, judge and speaker at uXperience, and post-doctoral researcher at Carleton University. 

Mentors and speakers from ScotiaBank Digital Factory, BlackBerry, Rogers, KnowledgeFlow, Binary Tattoo, and others guided participants as they created their solutions, and prepared to pitch their solution. Workshops and topics included working in online teams, privacy and ethical design, privacy and accessibility, and the implications of AI and big data.  

“They [Clubhouse] created a tool/platform that addressed a *real* need, created out of the pandemic, for multiple people (parents, teachers, students). I also think that they thought about privacy in EVERY step of their design process and implemented additional protections for their users given their age, etc.,” added mentor Kara Brisson-Boivin, Director of Research at Media Smarts. 

uXperience | Think Privacy was a partnership between the Cybersecurity and Privacy Institute and the Stratford School of Interaction Design and Business at the University of Waterloo. To view the gallery of submissions and winners, visit uXperience on DevPost

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