Justice-as-a-Service: next generation consumer protection tools

Henrik Zillmer has a wonderful blogpiece on Justice-as-a-Service, that details a new crop of consumer oriented apps that help people take advantage of the legal system for their own benefit. There’s a new wave of customer empowerment coming. It’s called Justice-as-a-Service (JaaS), and you need to know about it because it benefits you – you just don’t know it yet. … Read More

Reimagining government transactions

Here is a project page from Australia, all about how design can be brought into laypeople-government interactions How design research and rapid prototyping can make interacting with government more human. Source: Reimagining government transactions The brief We were asked to improve the way every Victorian citizen interacts with the state government by creating and monitoring a fully functioning service centre. … Read More

Digitai’s Loss Aversion calculator

Digitai has an online diagnostic tool to help you understand what your personal risk tolerance is — in particular, how you experience loss vs. gains. Going through a short series of A vs. B questions, you are told how much you experience gains vs. losses.

The Smarter Screen book about online behavioral patterns

This October 2015 book by a behavioral economist, Shlomo Benartzi at UCLA’s School of Management, points out the biases and patterns that are at work as people make choices while on digital interfaces. It also proposes a toolkit for digital nudging, about how to make more effective outcomes and behaviors as a designer or product-owner. In The Smarter Screen, behavioral … Read More

Can Consumers Make Affordable Care Affordable? The Value of Choice Architecture

Tens of millions of people are currently choosing health coverage on a state or federal health insurance exchange as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. We examine how well people make these choices, how well they think they do, and what can be done to improve these choices. We conducted 6 experiments asking people to choose the … Read More

Project: EVO video game for helping people with attention deficit disorder

Katherine Ellison wrote a Nov. 23, 2015 piece for The NYTimes’ Well Column, Video Game Is Built to Be Prescribed to Children With A.D.H.D. It profiles the growing trend of video-game based medical and psychological tools. This one profiled in the article is about treating attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. The tool, Project Evo, is from Akili Interactive Labs (“we’re in … Read More

Gut-check: understand your options to screen colon cancer

The government has a website called Gut-check that takes a visual, lively approach to explaining what options you have to screen yourself for colon cancer. It doesn’t just lay out the options, it walks people through them & helps compare them.

HelloWallet’s designs for personal financial wellness

HelloWallet is a company aiming to help people be ‘financially well’ through a variety of interventions and tools. They sell their packages of services to companies, who then provide them to their employees. HelloWallet partners with employers to provide independent, personalized financial guidance to employees through web and mobile-based software applications. We are very impressed with the look & feel, … Read More

Opower’s behavioral design principles for better energy saving

Opower is fascinating. It’s a company that promotes better energy use by using behavioral heuristics & user-centered design. It also explicitly lays out its core principles for how it uses these techniques to create better products. Here are their 5 key principles, each illustrated with their own tools, interfaces, and products to show the principle in action.

Prescribe Design

Prescribe Design is a network of designers working on improving healthcare. The key to improving healthcare is a network of engaged, informed designers. We are firm believers in the power of people-centered design to radically transform healthcare. It is our belief that designers are one of the most untapped, underutilized assets in the healthcare industry. We created Prescribe Design to … Read More

CFPB interactive tools for mortgage decision-making

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has launched a substantial project to increase people’s understanding of their mortgage decisions called Know Before You Owe. Here are some of the interactive calculators & explainers they developed to help people going through buying a house and taking out loans.

Wise Design Crime: bad credit card payment screens

We are gathering together examples of badly designed interfaces, services, systems, signs — all possible targets for Wise Design interventions. These design crimes are worth highlighting to show what is wrong with the status quo, and to create a baseline against which we can compare our design work. Credit Card payment screen

Planwise Financial Calculator

Planwise is a suite of planning tools for people interested in buying a house. One of their patterns is an interactive calculator that walks the user through entering in key financial info, and then gives them a graph of what they can expect in their bank account over coming years.

HealthCare.gov Styleguide: Unified UX for govt services

The team at HealthCare.gov has made public a full site of design standards and patterns for how they communicate options and paths to the public. It’s a very useful (and totally free!) set of documentation on good web design for complex & intimidating processes. HealthCare.gov Styleguide: What and why HealthCare.gov is a big, complicated technology project. From the start we’ve … Read More

Govt. sponsored user-focused designs

The Federal Reserve Board published an article on designing better consumer-facing disclosures. Included in it is a compendium of recent consumer-facing design processes and testing that government agents have run. Here is the list they made: Reports outlining the findings of the consumer testing sponsored by the Federal Reserve Board over the last few years are available online. Reports on … Read More

Personal finance, another ripe area for wise design

Wealthfront is one of the emergent personal finance advisor platforms (they hit 2.5 billion dollars asset management in their portfolio based on their website). Platform offers a diagnosis/triage tool to understand your personal preferences, and create a tentative investment plan on the go. Questions get to the basics of your investment budget and assess your risk tolerance. The diagnosis/triaging design  … Read More

Better mortgage disclosures from Consumer Protection Financial Bureau

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has launched the ‘Know Before You Owe’ effort — which encompasses new design standards for how people lending lay people money for their mortgages must communicate their terms to the borrower. The CFPB team used a design process to figure out how the current disclosures go wrong, prototype many different new types of disclosures, and … Read More

When does Legal Fine Print help or hurt a consumer?

The Univ. of Pennsylvania’s RegBlog has a series of essays discussing whether mandatory legal disclosures help, harm, or have no effect on people — and on upholding the legal system. It’s in reaction to the book More than You Wanted To Know: The Failure of Mandated Disclosure, by Omri Ben-Shahar and Carl E. Schneider, that argues that all of these … Read More

How to Live Wisely, some exercises from university classes

On the New York Times’ Education blog, there is a piece, How to Live Wisely that profiles several new classes in universities that help students plan how their college path will be and how to be discerning & intentional about their time. It ‘s from Richard J. Light,  a professor at Harvard Graduate School of Education and author of “Making … Read More

Choice Box interactive visual tool to assess options

Lawyer & technologist Marc Lauritsen has a concept for an interactive, visual tool to help people make better choices among complex options: The Choice Box. Read about the entire idea & its background in ‘Boxing’ Choices for Better Dispute Resolution · International Journal of Online Dispute Resolution. Here are some excerpts & illustrations that describe the Choice Box concept. It’s … Read More

Getting smart & getting beyond smart: setting a wise design agenda

There’s an old Turkish saying that when a tool performs well, its owner gets the pride. Since the beginning of human civilization, people become and feel smarter with the tools that they invent. Think of a hammer, it amplifies the strength of the person, it streamlines the nailing process, it extends and transform the limited power of its user. Once … Read More

LearnVest Personal finance action planning

Another financial planning Wise Design – LearnVest, that helps a person start planning what kind of savings and financial track they should be on and follow through on it. And here are some of their sample Action Plans that we could potentially see as patterns for other expert-to-lay person custom advice.

BrightScope financial planning tools

In the growing world of Wise Design for financial planning support for lay people, BrightScope is another pattern — this one for evaluating retirement options. Specifically, 401K plans offered by different employers. They have a directory of employers, that the user can browse/search, and after fining their’s, see some data breakdowns & scorings of how the retirement planning options and … Read More

People don’t understand how to plan for death, doctor conversations can help

Doctors soon may be reimbursed by Medicare for talking with patients about end-of-life treatments. It’s a change in policy that’s long overdue.   The editorial board of the New York Times published a piece about Helping Patients and Doctors Talk About Death, trumpeting new policies that would enhance the services — particularly around discussing difficult trade-offs and outcomes — provided … Read More