Starlings Tech

Research Project

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About the Project

Starlings is a micro-mobility group within MIT Media Labs’ City Sciences group. Their primary project, Bike Swarm, integrates a synchronized bike lights into bike-share systems to enhance safety. When bikes are alone, their lights stay steadily on. When bikes are near each other, their lights pulsate in synchrony.

The Objective

As a student research assistant, my role was to design a brand identity for the group with a name, logo, unique iconography, and website. Establishing a public facing brand is important for Starlings in their endeavors to achieve recognition and opportunities in the world of transportation. My advisors simulated the role of a client, what I created fulfilled their needs by communicating ideas and experimenting. Through cycles of feedback I delivered the best possible designs within the aesthetic Starlings’ founders were looking for.

Design Research

Researching design trends amongst bike-share and scooter-share systems prefaced my design work. These design trends include typography, iconography of bikes/scooters, and website layouts. After discussing my findings in this research, I made informed design choices based on successful trends of the market. During the research period I also facilitated a brainstorming session dedicated to formulating Starlings’ brand.

Icon Design

This was my first experience illustrating iconography. My initial icons had 10x the complexity than my final designs. By iteratively adjusting the designs from feedback, my advisors were satisfied with the end results.

The Final Design

By the end of my semester I was able to provide a website built with Wordpress and unique icons. Through this process I acquired tools for informing my designs with client feedback and preference.