EDF is one of the world’s largest electric utility companies specializing in all areas, from production, transport and distribution to engineering, optimization and trading. In 2011, the company counted 156,168 employees and 37,7 million clients worldwide, with €72,7 billion in revenues in 2012.
As part of the 2013 International Design Biennial at Saint-Etienne, the R&D department wanted to provide an educational and interactive device to help the general public understand the rather abstract and complex "energy mix" concept – the distribution of the different energy sources. The devices offered the users to interact with communicating objects and touch screens. It allowed them to build and test their ideal electrical system (combining wind, solar, nuclear, thermal power, hydropower) to answer energy needs of citizens.
The quality of the experience was critical to ensure the success of this project, which was actively supported by the ICAME R&D division.
METHODOLOGY AND OUTPUTS
Designers and developers worked in close collaboration following agile principles to:
- Finalize a complex usage experience, through interactions with multiple devices (two screens and physical objects)
- Ensure responsive and dynamic interface performance by enabling the physical objects, graphical elements and the two screens for real-time communication
- Create and integrate a graphic universe with rich animations, while adhering to the EDF identity guidelines and exploiting web-only technologies
- Integrate the necessary data to carry out energy simulations with multiple parameters (season, types of energy, time of day)
- Meet tight deadlines, with the device required to be fully functional before the launch of the biennial
Our team carried out the project in tight collaboration with the designers and researchers of EDF.
The result is an attractive set up, where the manipulation of physical objects adds an entertaining dimension that encourages interaction. The graphic universe and fluid interactions offer a rich and enjoyable experience on an otherwise complex topic.
A second device has since been installed in the showroom of the “Smart Electric Lyon” experimentation.
The interactive kiosk has received the 2015 “Observeur du Design” label. Feel free to view the presentation video online