Archive for June, 2016


Q+A with Joél Valdez, UX Designer

Tuesday, June 28th, 2016

Joél Valdez is a Los Angeles-born, Wisconsin-raised creative. Growing up in a bilingual household, Joél often turned to drawing to effectively communicate unfamiliar words, which led to his passion for graphic design. When he’s not working as a UX/UI designer at Worrell, he can be found exploring the local food, music and art scenes, shooting lifestyle photography, practicing yoga, hip-hop dance, painting and drawing.

What books will we find on your bookshelf?
I really enjoy books of poetry. My current favorite is Andrea Gibson’s “The Madness Vase.” I recently purchased Warsan Shire’s “Teaching My Mother How to Give Birth,” after seeing her work beautifully adapted for Beyoncé’s visual album, LEMONADE. In terms of design, “Designing for Emotion,” by Walter Aaron is a great source of inspiration, providing everyday examples of swoon-worthy interface designs.

Outside of work, what’s the best thing you’ve ever made?
I’m really proud of the work I put into redesigning the Aster Café website. I was tasked with matching the restaurant’s website with its beautiful space, iconic atmosphere and unique food and drink. I redesigned the site with an entirely new look and feel, while providing a new art and photography direction that better represented the brand’s aesthetic.

How do you stay current on UX innovations?
I’m constantly trying to keep a pulse on emerging technology and UX/UI design trends. Fast Company, the UX Design tag on Medium, Mashable, Motherboard and A-List Apart are among some of my favorite sites for sourcing inspiration and staying on the forefront of the industry.

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Good Technologies for When Bad Things Happen

Tuesday, June 28th, 2016

Accidents happen. And our response – in the form of the tools we use and time we take – dramatically impacts whether trauma results in a minor scar, permanent damage or death. Today, technology is playing an increasingly larger role in how we better respond to and manage catastrophic events. Read on as we highlight some of the latest innovations that are applying state-of-the-art design solutions and technologies to redefine emergency preparedness and response.


Ambulance Drone
This flying defibrillator proves that drone technology can be used for good. With this concept, drones would be stationed at various points in the city and with a simple phone call, the drone would travel to the scene of an emergency within seconds. The drone is equipped with a webcam and speaker, allowing a remote paramedic to walk people through the process of attaching the electrodes and preparing the defibrillator.

This is an excellent example of improving a trusted life-saving device by introducing a new application of an emerging technology.



Realizing that even the most skilled swimmer can experience a water emergency, Tom Agapiades, creator of Kingii, developed the smallest inflatable in the world. Watersport enthusiasts rarely wear a lifevest given its large, inconvenient nature. Kingii is a reuseable, wearable wristband that provides emergency buoyancy with the push of a button.

People don’t like to feel encumbered; this minimal package speaks to the usability issues that are keeping swimmers away from wearing the devices that save lives.



Twiage is a pre-hospital communication system that delivers real-time incoming ambulance alerts to Emergency Departments. Paramedics and EMTs can use the app to videotape symptoms at the trauma scene, as well as record digital voice memos. By providing live patient data and GPS-tracked timing for all incoming ambulances, Twiage helps hospitals accelerate treatment for critical emergencies

As a patient enters the ER, videos and images of the individual combined with smart systems for prioritizing the severity of an ailment help to ease transition from one care unit to another.


Revmed X: Xstat-30
XSTAT 30 is a hemostatic device used for the control of severe, life-threatening bleeding from junctional wounds. Revmed is transforming how first responders help civilians treat severe bleeding while on the trauma scene by enabling them to inject a group of small, rapidly-expanding sponges into a wound cavity using a syringe-like applicator.

The approach is simple and familiar, making it possible for those with very little medical knowledge to deliver a lifesaving treatment.


The 3M Intelligent Control Inhaler
Designed to improve compliance among patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), 3M’s new smart inhaler has an electronic display that provides clear instructions to the user, ensuring the device is used properly. The device records the patient’s use and an internal mechanism is used to control the release of the medication so that the proper dose is delivered, even if the patient’s profile changes.

Miniaturization of screens and sensors is enabling a new way of smart medical devices. Hat tip to 3M for modernizing this basic device, without adding too many features.


Dialog by Artefact
Artefact: Dialog
Dialog is a system designed specifically for helping epileptic patients track and manage their seizures. The module, designed to be worn like a sticker directly on the patient’s skin, communicates with a smartphone app and a cloud-based tool for patients, physicians and caretakers alike. Dialog helps both epileptic patients and their caregivers achieve a deeper understanding of the disease, ultimately allowing them to make better decisions so they can live as freely as possible.

Better information about when and how seizures occur enables patients to modify their behaviors to avoid the situations with the greatest likelihood of triggering an epileptic event.

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Posted in Design, Digital Health, Emerging Technologies, Engineering, Healthcare, Industrial Design | No Comments »

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