2016 - Present (Development & Growth in Progress)
“Buoy” is an iOS app that lets you exchange thoughts and connect with nearby strangers.
We all go about our day, carrying around the weight of our fears, goals, and triumphs on our minds. But we don't see the similarly complex and personal voices of the hundreds of strangers we pass.
Chances are: the person on the train is in that same funk, the person in line has seen the other side of the fork in the road, and the person who walked past you is discovering similar joys in life.
Unbelievable bonds are forged when you hear each other's signals, rather than simply float by.
Email me to learn more, or be involved.
2016 (Series in Progress)
#100DaysOfStrangersPortraits is a series of watercolor portraits & short narratives of strangers I cross(ed) paths with.
My hope is to capture and recirculate the feeling of warmth and serendipity that comes from a "stranger" becoming familiar.
The series is a part of a larger social media collective, the #100daysproject by Elle Luna, which involves creating for 100 days to honor and make room for your art.
Selected samples, primarily done in acrylics and cardpaper, can be found here.
"Steaze" is a web app that fetches real-time images of street style in various cities around the world, using the Flickr API.
On any given day, you have a snapshot of the trends you would find on a walk through the city.
Looks that are ahead of the books--at your fingertips.
Steaze is live here.
UberMeet is a feature proposal/spec for UberPool, wherein riders can preview and select potential co-riders based on their one-line bios.
Given that matched riders often have intersecting daily routes, this feature is an opportunity to capitalize on the social layer beneath the surface of Uber's model.
UberMeet addresses hesitations surrounding UberPool while creating a powerful network effect, during UberPool's formative stage.
The complete proposal, containing key performance indicator analysis, brainstorm results, and feature UX flow, can be found here.
“Click" is a Natural Language Processing algorithm that measures relevance between any two personal narratives (i.e. long-form, first-person content).
Personal narratives, shared increasingly online, present volumes of untapped data for representing identity through natural language. I was interested in the social applications of this data, and developed Click as a means to "match" individuals through relevance between their personal narratives.
Click employs a "motif dictionary" to access the unique, identity-capturing features of personal narratives that generic similarity models are not tailored to measure. Click matched human judgment in overall trends, but overlooked particular nuances.
Find the complete paper here.
2014, with David Rockwood and Cathy Zhu
"Duzuro" is a web app that allows distance learners to study alongside their classmates through progress-based chat rooms.
Distance learners in a Stanford computer science class unanimously expressed feeling isolated and barred from the benefits of group-study. Unable to bridge this gap through Piazza or direct communication, distance learners often give up on reaching out to classmates altogether.
Duzuro was designed to address this need. Distance learners, after using the final iteration of Duzuro during their class, expressed that it provided them with two primary aspects of group study: 1) low-barrier interactions and 2) real-time Q&A.
"Fuse" is a dress designed and sewn from 6 yards of reclaimed sari fabric for a material redesign competition.
The goal of this piece was to reclaim Indian aesthetics from frequent alteration and appropriation in western fashion, by creating a fusion of the two cultures that preserves the sanctity of each.
Find photos of the process here.
2011, in collaboration with Seeds of Empowerment
1001 Stories is an initiative I collaborated on to encourage children in underprivileged areas to hone their creativity and literacy for self-empowerment.
In each community, we host a workshop to help children share and publish the stories they want to tell; then, we funnel the profits from each sold book back to the child author's education.
In early 2011, I led the team to rural schools near my hometown in India to implement one of the first 1001 Stories workshops. These pilots were transformational for us, as we iterated on how to design prompts that foster the vulnerability and creative confidence required for each child to bring forth the stories inside of them.
Find more about the workshops and stories here.