La mia 500

La Mia 500 – The compact car with a digital soul

An old Fiat 500 car revamped in an entertainingly hi-tech key. It won’t even open up for you unless you send it a text message (by tapping in the registration number on your mobile); its mirror hides camera to film and/or photograph the crew, and the rear windows are screens on which you can write text messages and send them in real time. When it’s filling up, it can download – along with the fuel – MP3 files from a sort of jukebox inserted inside the pump.

First, the car open only if you send it an SMS (by keying in the registration number on your mobile); it replies by flashing its headlights and sending a message of acknowledgement from the owner, with comments such as: “Good evening, welcome back! By the way, I’m thirsty, I’m out of fuel…”
Its sun visors feature make-up mirrors on the back, with TV cameras to film and/or photograph the crew, while the rear windows are screens on which you can draw or write emails and text messages to be sent in real time. “Through wireless networks and with GPRS connections”, says Natasha, “messages, sketches and images are stored on the car’s website”.
When hooked up to a fuel pump to fill up with petrol, the vehicle can download mp3 files from a jukebox inside the pump.
And when the Fiat is parked, a device installed between the two headlights, project its memories to the outside -films and images stored during ist daily trips.

Exibited in Milano Triennale – 2003, Science festival in Genova – 2004 and is now part of Telecom Italia Science Museum in Venice.

Design challenges when designing for an exhibition

  • It has to be durable – it will be used and abused by many visitors
  • It has to be easy to manage/fix by someone else if you are not there
  • It has to be intuitive for the visitors who do not read the description on usage
  • It has to be a fast experience as you want it to be used by as many visitors as possible
  • It has to be exciting for those who are waiting to use it, while someone else is using it.
Delivering to Venice 🙂

Here are the personas I created for TalkTalk. These are the size of a standard postcard, double side printed with General info on one side and data on the other side.

Press coverage

After graduating with MA in Interaction Design I was offered and opportunity to design for an exhibition of the “Future” show for Trienalle in Milan.

Here is what I came up with. I built all hardware and software for this.

The compact car with a digital soul

Video credit goes to Dave Slocombe and Interaction Ivrea

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