I recently bid for a project with Zappos.com, and they provided a unique test. Provide UI mockups that meet the following requirements:
- Displays an image of a product
- Displays basic product data (price, color, size options, etc.)
- Allows a user to add the item to their cart
- Allows a user to review the item
As a result, I did two variations (the first is rebounded). I noticed couture.zappos.com was recently launched, so I went for a vintage variation and kept with the shoe theme (it wasn't required), but in 2027.
My future assumptions were:
- Faster download speeds, mean higher resolution work and quality video. I hope for Japan internet speeds in the States.
- This generation will be immersed in touch environments; websites will focus on touch features as a mainstay, without losing traditional mouse users or disabled users
- Less http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skeuomorph in the paper and book sense, but still there for architectural and clothing pieces, as this generation will use less printed and noted paper
- Shorter attention spans in general; although most people will probably not be comfortable recording video and audio still, it will become more common and integrated in everyday life. Video recording will be included even more in basic devices, as it mostly is already.
Some of my hopes were:
- 3D digital printers become the norm; using material cartridges, users can produce products at home. Kindle for shoes.
- Apple makes a razor thin, color e-ink, halo HD future of the iPad: iDepth. Using Zappos iDepth app, you can measure your foot size at home, and compare the look of the shoe to your clothing.
- Keeping with the idea of Zappos Couture as a spinoff, the site is minimalist compared to the traditional Zappos site, and flavored to the audience. I'm made bad attempts at putting 2011 slang dropped into phrases, and mashup of future companies (shipping checkouts would be USPS-UPS and Fedex), but urban dictionary wasn't helpful:).
Everything would be touch sensitive: sliding your finger over the shoe would fly through various views, including pinch events that zoom throughout the page and bring up contextual menus for video (in general though, I'd imagine drop downs as I designed may not be necessary in that fashion, but worth exploring more). And, of course, all via html7 and css5... no need for flash. Considering matrix style, technical computer systems are always Hollywood's vision of the future but never really feel like the future, I just went for human fun.
Unfortunately I did not receive the project, although they liked this concept... so much so I worry I'll see a Vintage Zappos in the future:). However they were adamant before the project: "And, just in case you're curious, you will retain all of the intellectual property to the designs you create for this challenge."
The final design in mockup included a home page where you could pick products not only by traditional methods, but by decade. The structure of each page would stay the same, but the design would mirror that period (sketches included Atari style art for late 70's, etc).
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