Weeknotes 1502/03

21 January 2015

Our 2015 studio
After moving in typical Rotterdam – sea container – fashion at the end of last year, Westersingel 18/19 already feels like home. The main studio, with great views on the “singel”, provides space to work alone or as a team. The second room allows us to deal more efficiently with the growing stream of simultaneous projects. Give us a shout if you want to stop by and have a look, or come to our 5 year Hoog+Diep party. More about the party at the end of this post, but first a short overview of our current projects:

Hoog+Diep studio at Westersingel 18/19

A new class of friendly NS/Pro Rail bike parking facilities
Since the summer of 2014 NS and ProRail (formerly Dutch national railways) partnered with us to create a new class of automated bike parking facilities. The aim is to create a friendly, safe and efficient bike parking experience. Over time ProRail will install these new facilities at mid size train stations across the Netherlands. Together we went through several design and user test iterations. Currently we are working towards the launch of the first pilot location in Q2 of this year.

Testing the new friendly bike parking experience with live size mockups.

A magic lens for Gelders Arcadië
As mentioned before we are working with several municipalities from Gerlders Arcadië – one of the most beautiful parts of the Netherlands – on an oral history app. Our focus is on retelling stories on location to a wide audience using their smartphones as a magical lens to see back into time. As an extra, the magic lens also works with the luxury storybook that holds much more personal histories. We finished a large chunk of design and development of the app and will work on producing the video and written content in the coming months.

Development of the “magic lens” Gelders Arcadië app with lots of cross-device testing.

Kickstarting Kupla
The energetic bunch that makes up Kupla contacted us last year to see if we could help them kickstart their startup. After initial discussions about their product concept and goals, we agreed that what would suit them best was a nimble iteration to design and build a distinctive prototype. The prototype should make them stand out, allow to do a beta user test and show the potential of the concept. Reactions to the first mockups tell us we’re on the right track. Kupla can’t wait to show you the result when we start the user test in February.

Next Train België/Belgique
In December our Belgian neighbours became the first non-Dutch train travellers to enjoy Next Train on their smartwatch. With three national languages and two national railroads, Belgium is the perfect test ground for us to see what it takes to adapt this product to foreign markets. If you are a Pebble wearing Belgian train traveler, please give it a go and tell us what you think. We will also keep an eye out for you in our weekly user statistics.

Next Train België/Belgique

5 year Hoog+Diep party
Hoog+Diep is 5 years old and we would to love to celebrate this with you in our new studio. You can look forward to drinks and many of our creations on show for you to play with. Expect the premiere of the Txiki prototype created by our wonderful intern Mick, our award winning “My first little toy story in 3D” and more. The party will cover much of our floor at Westersingel 18/19 since it will also be a housewarming for both us and our friendly neighbours Adriaan, Richard, Jeroen and Tomasz.

The very young Hoog+Diep in 2009