Research Synthesis Design Solution

Low-Carb Life  


03 Mental Models

We elaborated on the information needs of our target users to develop mental models:

Common Needs:

  • Primary Ingredient of Recipe (Meat Type)
  • Diet Phase for Recipe
  • Carb Content for Recipe
  • Calorie Content for Recipe
  • Other Detailed Nutritional Info
  • Recipe Ingredients
  • Cooking Instructions
  • Recipe Title
  • Picture of Recipe
  • Simple Description of Recipe

Yuppie Couple:

  • Preparation Time
  • Special Equipment Required
  • Unusual Ingredients Required

Soccer Mom:

  • Previous Recipes Used
  • Nutrition Info for Meal
  • Shopping List for Meal
  • Current Phase
  • Days Remaining in Current Phase
  • Recipes with Carb-Increasing Options (for non-dieting family members)
  • General Information and Support

Given the above needs, we developed scenarios to elucidate the series of actions that each user type is likely to take when visiting the site. All users are likely to filter recipes by the primary ingredient, such as the type and cut of meat it requires. Since the yuppie couple is under time pressure, they are next likely to prioritize recipes by the preparation time. While browsing, they will use secondary information about diet phase and ingredients to filter out recipes that are not appropriate to them. The soccer mom is more likely to prioritize by phase or carb content and then browse for "interesting" items. In particular, she will be looking to build a complete meal that addresses the nutritional needs of her whole family. Both user types will use information about the taste of the food from a picture or description to make their final selections.


IID 2005 . Human-Computer Interaction Institute . Carnegie Mellon University