Socialyst

Socialyst is an app and web service that helps people organize and keep memories of time spent together. It is also a great tool to kick start an event and to keep your finger on the pulse as events unfold.

As recently as 15 years ago hosting a party meant inviting each participant with a phone call or extending an invitation in person. We only had one main option to retain our memories from these events – our own brain. Sometimes film cameras were used but it took time to get the pictures back from development, let alone distribute them among friends.

Today some things are easier to get done – we can reach out to many people at once with the help of the internet and we have new tools to record and instantaneously share our experiences with one another. However, now we run into a different problem – we generate a lot of content almost instantly, but we have to spend a lot of time and effort to collect it from everyone who was at the event.

An event is created in Socialyst and once participants arrive they are checked in and given the ability to share any digital content they generate with others during their time together. Pictures, videos, places, and many more artifacts from the event are available for review both during and afterwards, making Socialyst a central reference point for the event’s happenings and experiences.

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In crafting this concept and the prototype the team went through an extensive user research process where we hosted three parties of around 10 people each. We were able to introduce all participants to a working prototype of the service, allowing them to collect pictures they took with their phones on a single page and made it available for instant review. Through some hacking of IFTTT we simulated the prototype’s response to the arrival of new people, change of a party’s location, and even included messages about the music that played during the party.

This research allowed us to gather multiple responses about the concept as well as our prototype. We found the proof that our concept was answering real needs of respondents and we were able to better craft the final prototype according to the wishes of our research participants.