Ruizhi explored long distance friendships and sought to explore a particular challenge: how can people maintain connected while spread across different cities and countries?

A digital concept shot of Landmine.


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.

Development Process

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.­

Information architecture for Landmine.