Product Design

Calming Stress

The Background

Whistlebox was my capstone student project at Media Design School. It was an individual project that lasted six months before it was funded for development. A concept which developed into a prototype called "Whistlebox" to help in my recovery from road rage. The heart behind Whistlebox is to help calm users from stress to become a better version of themselves – for their development but also the benefit of their family, friends, and the greater community at large.


Active Marketing, New Zealand


Product Design: 24 months (2017-2019)

My Role

Product Owner/Designer


Whistlebox Design Framework for UX Research & Design, Survey Monkey, Canva, Balsamiq, Sketch, Invision, A/B testing, C++, C, Java (Android Studio & Xcode)

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What is Whistlebox?

Whistlebox is an app that helps reduce stress and anxiety in difficult situations. However, because our brains are amazing things, with time and practice we can re-calibrate our minds to respond in a better, more positive way. With repeated use Whistlebox helps its users to re-train their brains and break old habits. With Whistlebox, anti-social behaviour can be avoided if stress is managed on a personal level, helping to ensure others feel safe around its users. Whistlebox can also be used as a tool to gauge whether a user is fit to perform their daily tasks e.g. driving, employment, at home, social gatherings, etc.

The Problem

As we grow up we create response pathways in our brain, they become well-trodden paths we go to when we feel a certain way. This is why we can find ourselves in different kinds of stressful or anxious situations and almost “automatically” respond in the same negative or destructive ways without intending to.

The UX Challenge

Finding a solution to calm me down from behind the wheel to reach my destination. It was a constant struggle for years, close encounters, and near misses of hurting others as well as myself. The marketplace for such an app to reduce bad driver behaviour was unknown. To understand the impact this research may have had on my recovery I had to identify a research method to conduct and evaluate my findings.

The UX Approach

I implemented cognitive philosophy as the solution to reduce bad driver behaviour. I discovered a technique used in therapy and utilised it to help me collect data from a survey to help me design wireframes to produce a prototype. The design framework system was specifically developed for this project to help me figure out personas and insights from one online survey. It executed the data science and machine learning for me, so I wouldn't have to. This remarkable framework system predicted designed features for the application. As a result, adopting this framework reduced time and resources by 50%.

The Design Process

EMPATHISE how people and businesses approach self improvement by conducting an online survey, DEFINE the user and application requirements by identifying design features for the application, IDEATE sitemaps to visualise brand values and PROTOTYPE design solutions using hybrid wireframes before prototyping then conduct user-testing to improve, DEVELOP the product from the prototype and re-examine for improvements.

After the project, I was able to fine-tune my design framework for duplication for use on other projects. To explore my new design framework. click here

The Design Framework & System

A design framework was put in place to collect data to help road map our objectives in all phases of the process from brainstorming, prototyping to deployment of the application on iOS and Android platforms. A design system was also implemented to allow me to group all my design components together for the prototyping phase

Building the Prototype

When the prototype was featured on New Zealand's premier news network 'TV3 NewsHub', it sparked a lot of public attention where it subsequently, secured financial backing to develop the mobile application. From September 2019, I was able to develop the application with a team of software specialists and by utilising the efficacy of my 'Whistlebox design framework' we were able to save time and money.


The UX Impact

The mobile application is available on both Google and Apple Stores for download. Feedback provided by our users are iterated for ongoing improvements. Currently we are initiating contact with three sectors we believe will benefit from the App, those being the Transport Agency, Family Violence and Mental Illness Sectors to help save lives.

Aim for the moon shoot for the stars