MBTA Portal

(Sponsor: Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority)

Team: Jason Lipshin, Phu Nguyen, Ulises Reyes

Advisors: Federico Casalegno (Director, MIT Mobile Experience Lab); Ryan Chin (Researcher, MIT Media Lab – Changing Places Group)

Short Description: The MBTA Portal is a casual game system subway riders play when they are bored and waiting for the train. Riders play in real time against riders at other subway stations and compete for small prizes which are loaded onto their subway cards. The length of games available to players changes based on the wait time remaining before their trains arrive. The mini-games are also very physical in nature, inspired by exercise games created for the Nintendo Wii and a Russian subway kiosk built for the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games.

My Role: Electronics (for all buttons on the game kiosk), NFC sensors (to simulate working with subway card), ethnographic/user research (conducted in NYC and Boston subways), concepts for gamification/prize mechanics, video documentation, wireframes and journey maps, interactive mockups of kiosk interface.

*Note:  The user experience research report for this project is available upon request (currently under NDA).

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