Ruizhi explored long distance friendships and sought to explore a particular challenge: how can people maintain connected while spread across different cities and countries?
LandMine is a new way to interact with friends using location-based messaging and gifting. This interaction helps to create shared experiences between long-distance friends. The main feature of the app is: users can setup a LandMine, attached with a message (text, photo, audio, video) and a gift (coupon, gift card), to a specific friend at a specific location. When their friend passes or arrives at that location, the LandMine will be triggered and notifications will pop up on both the setter’s and recipient’s phones. By facilitating the creation of shared memories and prompting people to reconnect, the app can help people maintain a long-distance relationship.
Applying user-centered design knowledge, Ruizhi went through phases of design research, ideation, prototyping, user testing, and iteration. Through interviews and questionnaires he discovered that building and maintaining friendships is based on shared moments. An interesting finding was that memories are most vivid when they are tied to a specific location. From this insight came the idea for LandMine: a location-based smart phone app.