October 2017 - April 2018 | Self-directed Individual Project
"Design a tool to build confidence and encourage experimentation in the kitchen, for those with sight loss"
This project has resulted from the intersection of two areas of interest; my curiosity for inclusive design, and my love of cooking. The process began with a divergent research phase, pursuing a better understanding of life with a visual impairment and how this affects the food experience. Through successive convergent cycles, I became focused on designing an inclusive induction cooktop which could create a safe space for experimentation and enable a love of cooking.
Flux is inclusive through form and technology. At the core of the product are three features which address key user challenges; an accessible interface, magnetic location and a temperature control system.
An interaction which doesn't rely on visual cues, but instead involves touch and voice, is crucial in creating an accessible interface. Temperature is controlled using clicking dials which provide haptic feedback, and timers can be set through voice.
Effective induction cooking requires correct alignment of the cookware to the coil below, this can be difficult to achieve with limited vision. Within Flux, electromagnets under the hob surface guide users, creating a satisfying and reassuring experience.
The multitasking required for temperature regulation can place a high cognitive load on users with sight loss. Flux facilitates a new way of cooking to counteract this, an engineered control loop enables constant temperature cooking, for less user input and more consistent results.
By harnessing technology and form, Flux creates a safe space for experimentation and enables a love of cooking for those with or without a visual impairment.