Next Generation Play

Play for a Digital Age


by designing positive experiences with technology


We’ve all seen kids completely absorbed with the screens in front of them. Yet, what if we could design with a purpose to move kids from consumption to creation. This research project was first started with a large Swiss technology company. We wanted to empathize with kids to help them engage in positive technological experiences for #timewellspent.

When the project changed to become an internal Handmade project, a small team of UX designers gathered together to discuss what could be done. We looked into current trends, as well as research coming out about the impact of smart devices on kids. We saw an opportunity in open-ended play (playing without specific goals). Child psychology will tell you of the importance of open-ended play. It’s here that kids can process their own emotions and experiences in healthy ways.



Building Toys — A LEGO approach to play in programming
Building Play — A hero toy to encourage open-ended play

Kid’s Toy Product Concept



Principal Product Designer

Concept Design, UX, Art Direction, Writing, Film Direction & Production



I begin my work in tangible expressions. Some people have a temptation to jump straight into computer work. I like to get away from the computer when I think and brainstorm. There’s something special about literally putting pen to paper to form new ideas.

Building Toys


Curio was a concept we created that taught basics in programming. In a way, it’s a tangible version of If This Then That (IFTTT). It’s Lego Technic meets Mr. Potato Head. Start by putting on either an input or output “widget”. Each widget has a personal characterization to look like eyes, mouths and other things. Keep adding more for surprising results.

Building Play


The concept of “Shapie McShapes” moves away from the engineering toy perspective to simplify the play experience. There is one hero device that can be used in multiple ways. The idea was that we could still use a smart screen to set parameters for each “Shapie”, but the fun would happen offscreen.

Product Teaser

After designing the foundational elements, we created a video which was presented to companies interested in pursuing this product.

I was primarily responsible for the creation of this video through: writing, directing, and film production. Below is the teaser.

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