Designing with (Artificial) Intelligence

Designing with (Artificial) Intelligence 1074 988 Mayukhi Chacham

Over the past few months, Panorama Innovation’s internal team has been exploring the crossroads of the design process and Artificial Intelligence (AI). In this article, we delve into the transformative landscape of how the rapidly evolving landscape of Artificial Intelligence impacts the foundation of design processes. We welcome comments and discussion about navigating the ever-changing currents of this dynamic field to unlock new insights for the future of design.

How can Artificial Intelligence and diverse language models be utilized to produce solutions impacting human systems? In what ways do AI platforms and tools enhance traditional design processes? How does AI influence human cognition, work patterns, and lifestyles? These are a few of the many questions that guided our inquiry.

In the dynamic landscape of technological advancements, Artificial Intelligence is here to stay. Within design research, in particular, it is shaping the way user data is collected, interpreted, and communicated. It can surface valuable data, filter out unnecessary information, generate insights, and craft meticulous documents. We explored the emergence of AI and focused on understanding the extent to which design processes could be automated; identifying areas where human intervention remains crucial.

Applications in Design Research

For this project, we focused on AI tools that are used to analyze and synthesize user data gathered through primary research.

These Large Language Models (LLMs) can be integrated into the human-centered design process to aid the workflow. Amidst these categories, Generative AI transforms content creation from personalized products to synthetic datasets. Predictive AI enables businesses to foresee and optimize future scenarios, offering insights into customer behavior and market demands. Meanwhile, Prescriptive AI takes it a step further, providing actionable recommendations for optimal outcomes in healthcare, customer retention, and logistics. This project focused on analyzing Prescriptive AI as a tool for design research.

Visualizing the Human-Centered Design Process Enhanced by AI (Click to enlarge)

Tools and Takeaways

In today’s market, an array of prescriptive AI tools cater to different facets of the research process, with new ones emerging regularly. Our objective was to identify and assess a platform that would streamline interview transcription, data analysis, pattern identification, and overall data comprehension. For this study, we looked at ChatGPT, Notably, Marvin AI, Kraftful, UserDoc, Pendo, Bard, OutsetAI, Recollective, Grain, and Dovetail. 

What worked?

Several of the AI tools swiftly transcribe audio and video, creating accurate, concise summaries from interviews. They can intelligently filter data, tag participants for organized quotes, and automate large text analysis, offering intuitive real-time assistance as well as responsive customer support with timely updates.

Here is a summary of general strengths:

  • Quick transcription of video and audio data.
  • Concise summaries derived from interview transcripts.
  • Easy to filter data based on directional context.
  • Quick tagging for organized clustering of quotes from various sources.
  • Conversion of data into insights presented in a communicable format.
  • Automation of analyzing large text volumes, forming a distinct point of view.

What didn’t?

Issues regarding confidentiality and data ownership arise, despite various tools’ capabilities in transcription, pattern finding, clustering, and sensemaking. The tools we reviewed relied on participant-provided information and could not observe behavior beyond that explicitly shared information for insight generation.

Here are some of the drawbacks of AI tools:

  • Confidentiality and data ownership is a concern. Many companies are reluctant to use even closed-source alternatives to analyze their customer data. 
  • Themes and patterns identified by AI analysis may not be relevant to the study. Needs human review to ascertain the significance and importance of findings.
  • Sole reliance on what the participant ‘says’. Absence of observational capabilities, resulting in a surface-level baseline for insight generation.
  • Lack of ability to read between the lines or ask follow-up questions to the participant if it is an AI-led interview.
  • Recognition is limited to data generated by AI, and is dependent on accurate tagging.

Exploring AI’s impact on research methodologies, the following insights offer a glimpse into its transformative potential and limitations.

AI is…

Embracing AI as a Team Member

In the evolving landscape, redefining our perspective on AI is imperative. Rather than viewing it as a mere tool or technology poised to supplant human roles, we should embrace it as a collaborative team member. This paradigm shift entails optimizing our collaboration with AI and adapting our methodologies to achieve optimal results aligned with the overarching project goals. This could involve a nuanced comprehension of AI capabilities, assigning tasks accordingly, and discerning moments where granting it autonomy is beneficial, balanced with instances requiring human intervention. Establishing comprehensive guidelines that underscore the authentic integration of AI across diverse contexts becomes essential.


Generative, Predictive, Prescriptive AI: What They Mean For Business Applications – Bernard Marr—

What are the 3 types of AI? A guide to narrow, general, and super artificial intelligence—

The things people like and would like to change about the city that they live in

The things people like and would like to change about the city that they live in 1094 742 Jesse Gao

Every city all over the world has so much to offer. These may be famous things that they are known all around the world for or small hidden things you only know about after you live there for a while. However, after living for some time in a city there are certain things that a person may not like so much anymore, and would want to change.

I interviewed a few people, living in different places about the things that they like about the city that they live in and things that they would want to change.

Maryville, Tennessee
What are things you like?

I love the friendly people of Maryville, TN. Blount county is amazing when it comes to community support for funding programs for the disabled. The kindness of the community goes hand in hand with the amazing beauty of our city.

What are things you would like to change?

There are limited retail and attractions, however, I would never give up our small-town community altruism to have those things. I guess I wouldn’t change anything.

Denver, CO
What are things you like?

I love the fact that Denver has so many days of sunshine. There are also an abundance of choices from mountains to rivers to go outside and enjoy nature.

What are things you would like to change?

Traffic. 😔

Mumbai, India
What are things you like?

The art and culture the city has to offer, whether it’s the architecture or the Bollywood film industry. There is a lot of heritage that can be seen all over the city, and a lot of food!

What are things you would like to change?

The city planning could definitely be improved, which would help with the traffic all over the city. There is also a lot of littering all over the city.

Chicago, IL
What are things you like?

There are 70+ neighborhoods in the city, and each one is so distinct and has so many different things to explore and do. There is food from all over the world in the city, it is so easy to find any cuisine. The art and culture the city has to offer range from museums and galleries to architecture.

What are things you would like to change?

The weather!! It can get very cold in the winter, and during spring the weather fluctuates from warm to cold every two days.

Memphis, Tennessee
What are things you like?

I love that there is always something to do in Memphis!  We have so many beautiful parks, great restaurants, exciting events at the river, and professional games and tournaments.

The best things about Memphis are the Blues on Beale Street and the BBQ. 

What are things you would like to change?

Our roads are in really bad shape and need repair, and our public transportation is horrible. 

Very high rates of unemployment and violent crime

The Top places where ID people wish to go after COVID

The Top places where ID people wish to go after COVID 1920 1277 proplight

The current COVID situation has effected everyone.  over the last year, people have stayed very close to home, with few opportunities to experience the wider world. However, it is April now, the hope of seeing some of the places people have missed is growing.

Most people feel the situation is improving or at least not as serious as it was in the last year. I interviewed several students at the Institute of Design, (IIT) in Chicago. Let’s see where they want to go and some of their concerns. 

Meet ID people
Elizabeth C. Engele

M.Des + Foundation

San Francisco

Bungaku Edward Kure

M.Des + MBA

Disney Caribbean Cruise

Samar Anwar

M.Des + Foundation

Northern Pakistan + Morocco

Vaaibhav Bhardwaj (VB)


Melbourne, Australia

Shinichiro Kuwahara

M.Des + Foundation

A baseball game

1. San Francisco
Why there?

I lived there for a year after graduating from undergrad (2015 – 2016) and have several friends in the City that I care about.  There are lots of adventures (hiking, beach, etc.) that aren’t offered in the midwest.  I had a plane ticket to go in March 2020 when the pandemic started, but wasn’t able to go.

Why can’t you get there?

I could go now, but I don’t think it’d be worth it.  I don’t want to burden my friends with meeting up if they are not comfortable. I think the restaurants are still closed. I’m in school so the costs (financial and time) dont make sense right now.  I’d rather wait until things open up, feel comfortable seeing old friends and hopefully bring a travel partner!

2. Disney Caribbean Cruise
Why there?

It has a nice view, fun events every night, and it’s Disney!!! 

Why can’t you get there?

It is too risky. What if I get a COVID there…

3. North Pakistan + Morocco
Why Northern Pakistan?

Pakistan is my parents’ home country and I tend to visit regularly, but I still have not been able to travel to the northern regions. My cousins and I have been wanted to plan a trip there. The area is known to be very beautiful.

Why Morocco?

The architecture and markets. I’ve always wanted to see it those in person. It’s a place of mixed cultures which I think would be interesting to see.

Why can’t you get there?

Because of COVID-19, traveling is difficult. I think it would be too hard to visit right now.

4. Melbourne, Australia
Why there?

Because my many childhood friends (people who are very close to me) live there. It’s been 3 years since I have seen them and we all miss each other. We used to meet up every year before I moved to the USA . We would travel to a new holiday destination, spend quality, relaxing, and stress-free time together. It is like recycling my energy and getting myself recharged for the future. 🙂

Why can’t you get there?

First of all, traveling is hard right now. Second, the place I’d like to visit is somewhere crowded. I would love to go to the St Kilda Twilight Market in the O’Donnell Gardens over summer.  You can eat, drink, enjoy live music and browse locally handmade arts, crafts, health and well-being products, and other creative merchandise, all in the shadow of Luna Park every Thursday evening. It is obvious that it is not as fun as it in the past.

5. A baseball game
Why there?

After COVID, I wish I could go to watch a baseball game with my classmates. It was a great moment to drink beer, eat a Chicago-style hot dog, forget about busy academic days and chat with my friends while watching sport.

Why can’t you get there?

Now, I can’t go there to avoid interacting with a lot of people, but I hope these days will come back soon.

Accessing Reliable Data Through IBM’s COVID -19 Dashboard

Accessing Reliable Data Through IBM’s COVID -19 Dashboard 3358 1898 Karishma Dotia

Designers around the world are addressing challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic in some amazing ways. I have been interviewing some of these designers to share their stories with you. 

For the first post, I had the opportunity to interview Victoria Aboud, one of the designers working with a large team of data scientists and researchers at IBM on IBM’s Covid-19 Dashboard.

Image credit: IBM (IBM’s Covid-19 Dashboard  date accessed May 11, 2020)

During this challenging time of the Novel Coronavirus outbreak, IBM is providing the public a free and interactive tool to track reported COVID-19 cases. Currently, the dashboard offers trend graphs in the U.S. to view recent statistics down to county level, it also offers global data of number of new cases and deaths, including comparative trend graphs between the countries. Additional information such as available public health information, patient education materials, locations of key healthcare clinics and testing centers and more, are anticipated to be added as available (Source IBM Newsroom)

Victoria Aboud has been a UX designer and user researcher at IBM for ~5 years. Prior to joining IBM, Victoria was a UX designer and strategist at several other design consultancies.

What is your role in this project?

Within this project, I am a designer and have been working with another researcher. I did not initiate the project, but collaborated with a group of data scientists who work with data analytics software. We are trying to give people the information that people are looking for and make sure that information is accurate. We are adding more information to the dashboard, with a visual hierarchy, and users can expect more information based on what we can gather. Our data science team is putting as much as they can, making sure it’s accurate and very reliable.

How is your team facilitating this process?

We did a survey with about 400 people asking what information they are looking for around COVID-19. Based on the answers, we prioritized what kind of charts we shared. l. We are also presenting it so that it is consumable – that’s where my role comes in – I am trying to shape the dashboard so it makes sense and tells the story that’s usable. Using the data we have and the data people want, I  put it all together.

What was your motivation to work on a project like this?

I took  some time out from my regular workload because I thought this was a project which could potentially do some good. It’s always good to work on a project that makes a difference. I think it is worthwhile to provide one more source of good information and it can’t hurt.

What advice do you have for young designers and design researchers out there?

Follow up on how people are using your research rather than just putting it out there and then abandoning it. It’s nice to see if people are actively using it, reminding them of what the research found to make sure that it guides the design. Follow up and follow through on new recommendations and how it’s affecting the design.

For more information about IBM efforts around COVID-19, visit and

Creating Better Access to COVID -19 Related Information in India

Creating Better Access to COVID -19 Related Information in India 3360 1896 Karishma Dotia

This post focuses on Sujit Joshi and his team’s work on COVID FYI to address challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Image credit: COVID FYI ( date accessed May 11, 2020)

This project was initiated by Simran Soni, a student at the Indian Institute of Management at Kozhikode, during a hackathon called Coronathon. The team came together during this hackathon, and is composed of volunteers coming from diverse backgrounds, contributing their skills in design, website development, data science, management.

Sujit Joshi is a service designer and UX researcher. He worked with Panorama Innovation for a year after graduating with a Masters degree in Design from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

What is the problem that your team is trying to solve?

The information surrounding  COVID-19, which has been released by the government of India such as helplines, contacts of health officers, COVID-19 clinics, testing labs, and hospitals is fragmented on the internet. Usually this kind of information is available on the government websites in the form of photographs or scans of handwritten or printed circulars which are in local languages. This makes it difficult to read or easily search the appropriate information. Our team is trying to get rid of this fragmentation of information and making it accessible to people through our website.

How is your team facilitating this process?

Right now we are about 20 people and have a growing team of volunteers who are going through the data and making sure the data is translated accurately. We act as information aggregators for this project, where we literally scourge through government websites to see what details have been released, like phone numbers of doctors who are interested in helping out through a phone call, district helplines in India, places where people can ask for food through community kitchens, get information related to what the symptoms are and get on a call with doctors.

In what ways are you contributing to this project?

Coming from a user-centric designer’s background, I also act as an advocate for users. The engineering team tends to be more on the optimization side of things, where they want to categorize the information properly, but the problem then is, the way this database is structured is different from the way in which users seek out information. I am the UX lead, where I figure out what ways people find information and try to understand different ways in which they process information. Using these observations, I try to make it easier for people to find everything because this website is also available to people of multiple languages, cultures, and educational levels in India. So I am working on ways to make the website interface more understandable and user-friendly.

Read further:

How Might We Redesign a Contemporary School Library?

How Might We Redesign a Contemporary School Library? 1685 1125 Karishma Dotia

Library at Galileo Scholastic Academy of Math and Science.

Kelly, the co-founder and partner at Panorama Innovation, brought together student teams from the Observing Users class at the Institute of Design, IIT, and the Student Voice Committee at Galileo Scholastic to coach them in using the power of design thinking and innovation to reimagine a Chicago Public School library. After these students completed research and came up with some preliminary concepts, Kelly worked with the Design Thinking & Communication class at Northwestern University to build prototypes for mobile maker carts at Galileo Scholastic.

The Process for Designing the Library involved several stages of work:


To understand the problem, graduate students from Kelly’s Observing users class at the Institute of Design (ID), observed and analyzed how the librarian and students at Galileo scholastic Academy use the library.

Defining Problem

After the research, the students came up with the following How Might we Questions to  provide guidance and generate solutions for potential design directions.


In the next phase, design students from the Institute of Design collaborated with the Students from the Student Voice Committee at Galileo Scholastic Academy to brainstorm about how they could make their library environment more creative, engaging, and inviting. 

ID students also facilitated ideation sessions along with Meredith Bowden the principal and Connie Amon, the librarian at Galileo Scholastic.


A lot of the concepts from the ideation session explored the idea of KRE8 Studio – a place where creativity flourishes in many forms – from new curricula and tools to changes in the physical space and furniture.


Inspired by the possibilities inherent in KRE8 Studio Connie Amon, the librarian, envisioned a Mobile Maker Space concept. Kelly then initiated a collaboration with Design Thinking & Communication class at Northwestern University to create the mobile maker carts. Two student teams created prototypes of the mobile maker to test with teachers and students from 1st and 4th grades at Galileo Scholastic.

Through a user centric design process, the students refined prototypes of mobile maker carts. These prototypes have been taken in use at Galileo Scholastic Academy by the students and teachers to see what works and doesn’t to inform the next iteration. With the tools and methods of design thinking, innovation and most importantly, collaboration, Kelly was able to work with students from three different educational institutions to reimagine offerings of the school Library at Galileo Scholastic Academy.

Remote Internships at Panorama Innovation

Remote Internships at Panorama Innovation 150 150 Karishma Dotia

Karishma Dotia

I have been interning with Panorama Innovation since February of 2020 as a designer and researcher. One important skill I learned at Panorama Innovation is the ability to collaborate with clients, researchers, and designers remotely. At Panorama, interns have the amazing opportunity to participate in client projects based in multiple locations around the US. This helped me get comfortable working virtually. The remote working skills and experiences I gained at this internship, before things went in lockdown due to the COVID-19, put me in a good place to transition to working from home.

As my Internship at Panorama Innovation comes to an end, I would like to reflect upon the things that made this an enriching learning experience for me.

Collaboration with people from other organizations

I got the opportunity to work on multiple projects, ranging from large healthcare companies to various not-for-profit organizations which helped me network with amazing clients, designers, and entrepreneurs.

Conducting ethnographic

 The best part was the chance to travel outside of Chicago to conduct interviews with research participants. I also learnt the skills of conducting remote ethnographic research and assisted in them by creating research stimuli for online data collection sessions.

Shouldering decision-making responsibilities

Kelly and Dana were always there to guide and mentor me, but there were times when I had to make important, responsible, and timely decisions, to finish the project tasks on time.

Here is what Panorama Innovation’s past design and research interns have to say about their experiences.

Sujit Joshi
Past Intern
July 2019 – March 2020

What were some of the things that you learned at Panorama Innovation?

“I learned a lot about the human-centered design process and how it is applied in the industry and how design is also bringing people together to generate innovative solutions.”

How do the remote working skills you learned at Panorama help you currently?

“People I am currently working with are more accustomed to working in an office setting than virtually. I understand them and try to make them more comfortable since this is very new to them. Especially during times like this pandemic, I am able to lead virtual discussions and work through any technical challenges.”

Apoorva Changedia
Past Intern
January 2018- June 2018

What were some of your personal goals?

“First was to understand how small businesses run larger projects and  how to recruit research participants for such projects. Another was to get an exposure into the world of not for profit organizations and how funding for them works.”

How did the remote work experience work to your advantage?

“There’s so much you can achieve by avoiding unnecessary in person check ins. I think meetings are very important but you spend a lot of time talking about things rather than actually executing things. So, I didn’t have to travel to work, being a student it was very important to me to manage my time.”

Hellen Lee
Past Intern
June 2015 – January 2017

What were some things you learnt about yourself?

“I discovered that I wanted to pursue a career that had an aspect of research in it. I really enjoy talking to people and like getting people’s insights on everything”

What about the remote working environment did you like the most?

“Flexibility in work hours is kind of a must for me especially if I want to continue being creative. I don’t like being just given a task and then micromanaged, that kills creativity.”

Incorporating Design Thinking for Community Improvement

Incorporating Design Thinking for Community Improvement 2560 1338 Dana Fell

When it comes to improving the community around us, many people think of traditional community planning tools and services. What is less often considered, and yet a rising trend in community development initiatives, is the use of design thinking for community advancement. In the past, design has been viewed as a skill used to primarily enhance the visual and aesthetic quality of a new innovation or place, and while it does still play that role, it can also create real and tangible improvements in communities, such as improvements to the way certain groups are able to live and work in a society, improvements to social issues like poverty, and a host of other important community factors.

What is Design Thinking?

Approaching community development utilizing a design approach means utilizing both physical and strategic design thinking to bring about change. According to Stanford Social Innovation Review, design thinking is the process of “using design techniques to tackle more complex problems, such as finding ways to provide low-cost healthcare throughout the world.”

It adds a more human element to traditional community planning, through the use of both traditional and less traditional methods of reaching a conclusion for the community.

One of the reasons design thinking works so well is that it is done in partnership with others in the community. While in the past, design choices were based only on decisions made by a team of designers, design thinking incorporates working closely with customers, consumers, and the community to figure out innovative design elements that can be used to create a positive impact on the environment.


Examples of Design Thinking making a positive impact

An example of design thinking making a positive impact on the community can be found at The Center for Collaborative Healthcare and Design. We recently spoke with Kim Erwin, Founder and Director of the Center for Collaborative Healthcare Design, and Assistant Professor at the Institute of Technology, or IIT, Chicago to find out how design thinking in the healthcare industry can assess where physicians and hospitals are falling short, and how this information can be used to develop prototypes and methods to meet those needs efficiently. An important problem that The Center for Collaborative Healthcare Design currently strives to address is clinician burnout. According to Erwin, design thinking is able to bring two different approaches to this problem.

The first approach is an understanding that design inherently has a value bias, and functions by the rule that everyone counts. This means that design often advocates for people, as opposed to systems.

The second approach to design thinking is creating system aware solutions. According to Erwin, this approach means, “taking one piece of it, and looking up and down the activity system… and saying ‘Can we design this particular intervention to be system aware’”. Creating system aware solutions does not attempt to solve the entire problem, but instead looks to create an intentional intervention and make progress.


Is design thinking only for designers?

While the best case scenario for implementing design thinking is to work with designers, there are more and more organizations that are approaching projects with design thinking that do not have a design background. According to Erwin, everyone is able to learn the principles and value system of design, but not everyone is capable of assessing which methods are the right approach for a particular project.

Right now designers are often included in a project as a “nice to have” rather than a “must have.” Erwin said, “Design thinking without designers is kind of like drinking watered down whiskey and wondering why it doesn’t taste so good.”

Changing the way we approach who to staff our projects with could be a step in the direction of creating real change through design thinking.


Are you interested in a design approach for your community?

Are you interested in how the design approach to community improvement could be used in your nonprofit or community group? Do you have a social issue you’re trying to solve that could benefit from a team of designers and strategic thinkers helping you brainstorm and facilitate new processes and products?

Here at Panorama Innovation we help companies create innovative products and services through a deeper understanding of people and the future. Our team is experienced at transforming real life needs, desires and motivations to guide the design process and create meaningful solutions.We bring expertise in anthropology, experience design, business strategy, organizational change, ideation, prototyping and concept testing. We have worked across a broad range of industries including technology, architecture, office furniture manufacturing, healthcare, consumer packaged goods, financial services, retail and the nonprofit sector.

If you would like to know how we can help you reach your goals please get in touch with us. We’d be happy to discuss your project and let you know how we can help!