Navigating the seas of uncertainty

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Top down view of the rear of a large sea vessel showing a large wake in the ocean water trailing behind
Top down view of the rear of a large sea vessel showing a large wake in the ocean water trailing behind



The ask

The client identified a customer need in a digital solution that aggregated telemetry from vessels in their fleet, geographical and weather data other information to more effectively communicate from shore-side, plan, guide and govern operations.

The main design challenge was to provide an experience and visual interface the optimised this process while also more effectively informing decisions.



Roles and responsibilities

My role as a consultant was to assist with setting up of the codebase, patterns and architecture of the user-facing web solution: a fleet management dashboard in a sense. I communicated between the team lead, scrum master, product manager, and designers daily to ensure unity of effort and facilitate closer collaboration.

Throughout the development of MVP, I proposed ways information could be more effectively presented, and also led the effort in keeping the framework up to date. I also focused on removing technical debt by setting up patterns for libraries and eliminating the dependency on libraries as well.

One of the toughest challenges was leveraging the web graphics (WebGL) API to allow the user to draw and gain geographical and other data. In this project I had the privilege of coaching and mentoring junior developers as well as experiment and stretch my skills to deliver a core business product.

Results & Reflections

After about a year of development and iterative improvements in visual and interaction design to meet the evolving user experience and business strategies, MVP was released as a web-based solution that integrated a complex system of APIs and products from multiple sources that brought immediate value to both the client and the client's customers.

Focusing on establishing ways of working with the designer and demonstrating how to reduce technical debt were my biggest successes, which resulted in the client asking for me by name back for another project.

*Details, name of organisation, and screenshots for this project are unavailable due to confidentiality.

**Images are stock photos found on UnSplash.

Ā© 2023 Stephen Chiang