Sentient Design: an AMA with Pollen Chakma
If you missed our last AMA with our UX/UI designer, here you can find the recap.
NCrypt30 — Good afternoon @everyone! And welcome to the second live text AMA with @Pollen — Head of UX/UI. This will be done in 2 parts:
Part 1 — Questions I have set ready to go.
Part 2 — We will take questions from the audience. Please, do not type anything before we get to Part 2. We will just wait for Pollen & then get going.
Pollen — Hello everyone! I’m very excited to be here today.
NCrypt30 — Afternoon Pollen. Many thanks for taking some time away from your busy schedule to be with us here today.
Pollen — Thanks @NCrypt30
NCrypt30 — Let’s get cracking!
Pollen — Yeah crack it.
POLLEN AND HIS EXPERIENCE AS A UX/UI DESIGNER
NCrypt30 — So doing some research, I see you have over 7 years of experience in your field. Maybe you can give a short story about your journey up to now?
Pollen — Sure! I’m a self-taught UX/UI designer. I started my professional career through freelance projects as an email developer, back in 2015.
But in 2018, I decided to learn new skills as a designer and that’s when I started to get involved with web3 projects. I’m now only focused on web3 projects because they are more fun, challenging and I always learn something new.
A couple of years ago, I worked with a technology company based in Australia, where my role was to design mobile applications from scratch. In that company, I had to work with different types of technologies such as real estate, logistics, and educational platforms. It was such a wonderful experience in my design career.
NCrypt30 — Nice, so being self-taught, did you find it easier to learn UX or UI? And for the people here today not familiar, perhaps you could explain what are the differences between UX & UI?
Pollen — Yes, the initial journey was hard. Becoming a designer it’s not just only about tools; it also requires deep-dive knowledge of design techniques and, of course, keeping in mind the aesthetic.
UI means User Interface. User Interface refers to the screens, buttons, toggles, icons, and other visual elements that the user interacts with when using a website, app, or other electronic devices.
Basically, a UI designer works in these areas:
- Design layouts and composition.
- Choose colors and fonts.
- Designing elements such as buttons, dropdown menus, text, input fields, etc.
- Convert wireframe to high fidelity design and make final design layouts.
- Work closely with developers.
And UX means User Experience. User Experience is how a user interacts with a product or service. For example, how a user feels while using a website or app.
UX design helps to make a product more functional, accessible, and enjoyable to use. To develop a product with better UX it needs:
- Research: conduct research to identify the product goals, users’ needs, behaviors, pain-points involved with the product…
- Develop personas based on the audience.
- User journey map and workflow.
- Wireframing and prototyping what the final product will look like.
- User testing to validate design decisions and identify problems.
- Collaborate with stakeholders, UI designers, developers and other team members.
That would be an easy explanation.
NCrypt30 — Wow, so quite a fair bit goes into it then. Well, if anyone ever wanted some information on UX/UI, this thread is a good place to start! User Experience is obviously key when it comes to creating applications. What would you say is UX design’s importance in Sentient development?
Pollen — Well, to develop an application it’s very very important to understand first what we’re trying to solve and achieve.
What’s the problem with our competitors? How the application will help the users to use our product or service?
So in this case of Sentient, the problem we’re trying to solve is to help crypto/non-crypto users or users who are new in the crypto world, so they can easily use our product to invest, stake and get the rewards that we’ll be offering.
NCrypt30 — Ok, so you have given an in-depth response on UX & UI and it seems there are many areas that need to align. What has been your biggest challenge when designing Sentient, and how did you overcome it?
Pollen — Yeap, there are so many things to align!
Regarding our product Sentient, the biggest challenge I got is understanding the limitations of the backend workflow (smart contracts).
For example, when we’re creating and designing Sentient’s platform, we want to make it easy to use for our users, but sometimes the design might not support the smart contracts or the technology we’re using. In this case, we have to keep adjusting it back and forth until we reach an optimal solution, always considering design and technology.
On the other hand, we often get stuck. But by sharing ideas with other team members, we always find a solution! So collaboration is very important to overcome any challenges, and we have the best team for that!
NCrypt30 — Talking of finding solutions and knowing when to adapt… I assume being in the field you are in, keeping up with trends is a vital trait to have. I am interested to know… What are the current trends and how Precog UX/UI is better than any others?
Pollen — Well, design trends come and go. But maybe all of you have heard about minimal design, a design system that is easy to use and very simple. But the current trend of design I mostly see is a 90’s nostalgia feel, 3D illustrations, bold style typography, etc. What we’re trying to create is a simple, slick and futuristic feel design across our Precog products. So we’re trying to blend our design system with a minimal yet futuristic style.
I would say Precog UX/UI is better than others. Because we’re not just quickly making products to launch. Instead, we’re taking a longer time to create better products with optimal solutions, and always keeping in mind strong security, of course.
NCrypt30 — Yep, I do agree with taking the time to create something great, as opposed to throwing something together, which then becomes buggy and somewhat unusable. Does Precog’s website and dApp have a responsive design?
Pollen — Yes @NCrypt30 that’s a great question.
Yes, of course, they both have a responsive design. Normally we create the mobile design first, as the majority of the traffic comes from mobile users, so having a responsive design provides users with a seamless experience.
Let me share some screenshots.
NCrypt30 — Please do!
Pollen — So here are a few sneak-peek designs I’m able to share. For the single screen, I have to design at least 9 devices with different breakpoints. E.g larger desktops, medium desktops, MacBooks, tablets devices, mobile devices, etc.
NCrypt30 — Oh nice, very clean, and to confirm, they are of Sentient?
Pollen — Yes, they are of Sentient.
NCrypt30 — I really like the use of the Precog colors. Good job!
Pollen — Thanks man!
NCrypt30 — So whilst we are on the topic of Sentient. Tell us about the current projects you are working on.
Pollen — Currently we’re working on Sentient phase 2. In phase 2, we’re adding the new feature staking and improving the UI/UX, as you can see in the above screenshot.
Also, we’re making the platform true responsive and more accessible across devices, so users can easily use our platform on their tablets, mobile devices, or laptops.
Along with the responsive design, we’re also trying to make the platform so much more interactive, using micro animations in actions such as nice hover animations, animations when users successfully invest, stake and get rewards, etc.
In this link, you can check a few micro animation examples of what we’re implementing: https://useanimations.com/.
I believe people will love our Sentient platform!
NCrypt30 — Oh I totally agree. Just from what I’ve seen so far, it looks slick. And I have no doubt in Mo & Abhi’s ability to make the algo development flawless. Which will no doubt provide a fantastic product all around.
I am going to finish off with 2 questions in relation to Precog. But I’d like to relay a quote from Gehan first in regards to the work the team does and how highly thought of you are. Especially in a difficult market, you all have your heads down working tirelessly.
“Precog has been an evolving concept over time and a combination of ideas from our talented team. Decentralized derivatives were emerging in a big way, with Bitcoin futures exceeding trade volumes of spot for the first time a few years ago. If it grew similar to the traditional finance derivatives market, we wanted to develop products to capture this value. Ideas turned into concepts, and finally to the point of onboarding talents that currently form our R&D team to build out the mechanics. Hence Precog was born, and now has over time developed into Sentient and Cerebral, which we couldn’t be more happier with the outcome, and also extremely proud of the team and advisors that have developed it.”
So my 2 questions are as follows: What is your experience working for Precog? What does Precog mean for you?
Pollen — Please to hear that @NCrypt30. Thanks.
So my experience working for Precog, in just one word, would be excellent! It’s actually very interesting and fun to work with the Precog team. Everyone is so collaborative and easy to get in touch with everyone whenever I need.
It’s like working together in one room haha.
And even though we have different time zones, as we all work remotely, it’s really flexible to work along with other team members.
And our CEO @Gehan is always so responsive, even if I message him at his 12AM I always get a response.
I think Precog is the future of crypto trading. As we’re creating an automated crypto trading platform to earn passive income for everyone, beginners or crypto maniacs. So through our platform, users actually don’t have to worry about the risk of manual trading; it’s a win-win always.
NCrypt30 — Perfect, thanks for the response on that. That closes out the main area. If the community has any further questions please feel free to ask.
Pollen — Cheers @NCrypt30
NCrypt30 — Ok it doesn’t look as though the community has anything further to add. Thanks for your time and enjoy the rest of your day!
Pollen — Have a nice day Nick, if the community has any questions please leave them here, I’m happy to answer them whenever I see them. Cheers guys!