a scene of a bathtub

Allo

banner of our app screenshot of the map in-app tablet screenshot of the recognition scene in-app screenshot of the of the information scene in-app

AR Cité

Creators: Augusto Mota Pinheiro, Kngfu & Dawson College
Start Date: ~ 04/2021
End Date: N/A
Medium & Tools: Unity | Flutter | Miro | Asana | Github

Project Summary

Back in April of 2021, Reisa Levine, a teacher in Media Production at Dawson College, reached out to me with an exciting opportunity! She recently received a grant from the federal government to fund her newest project: an augmented reality app that showcased different cultural and historic parts of downtown Montreal.

Wanting to create an educational experience above all (both during development and use), with the help of Kngfu, a Montreal-based creative company, and myself, we've been creating a virtual reality experience that will enable users to explore the city and its history.

Created in Unity, the app will be available on the Play Store and Apple App Store.

first mockups of the app more mockups of the app second version mockups of the app second version mockups of the home screen second version mockups of the information screen future version mockup of the home screen the first version of the ingest tool the web version of the ingest tool the latest web version of the ingest tool screenshot of the external documentation

My Role

Originally, I was tasked with developing the app following the designer's mockups and specifications (examples above).

I implemented different features like location based audio and semi-interactive map, the entirety of the media UI on recognition, making scene transitions, localization (between English and French), loading of cloud-stored media (photo, video, audio), implementing a cache system, image gallery on information screen, among other things.

As I gained more confidence, I started having more autonomy in the team and in the development pipeline as well as in chiming in during meetings. Not only did I work on the main app, I also introduced 2 important initiatives: an ingest tool (which started with a Windows only application and became a web based Flutter application) so that non-tech-savvy members of the team could upload media and content and external documentation of every script in the main app and in the ingest tool. (both pictured above)

Thanks to my now expanded autonomy and confidence, as well as having introduced these extra resources, my role also expanded into a mix of DevOps, Software Development and Product Design.

first team planning board MVP timeline and features sketch buggy UI screenshot buggy camera feed and debug UI

What I Learned & How I Could Be Better

Since this is my first time working on a big team project, there was a lot to learn!

The most important things were:

  • Achieving milestones together is much more rewarding than by myself.
  • However, having everyone in sync and on the same page can be quite the challenge, particularly if everyone has distinct roles.
  • Expressing your thoughts about an idea or concept should be a priority in communicating.
  • Finally, even if it's difficult, patient communication (through planning boards) is key to success, specially in larger teams.

Aside from involuntarily creating spectacular bugs sometimes (as pictured above), there are also things that I would've done differently, like focusing less on the tiny little details and more on the big picture. It's mostly for myself, so that I can have healthier work/life balance.

And that's it for now :) I'll keep posting updates as the project progresses, until then!