MediaLAB Amsterdam is now the Digital Society School! You are viewing an archive of MediaLAB projects. Content on this website may be outdated, and is without guarantee.

Games 4 Health

What motivates people in their 20s to improve their amount of physical activity in a Dutch urban environment?


Rick Borgeld

Interaction Designer / Researcher

Paula Barreto

Marketeer/ researcher

Karen de Graaf


Suzanne Tromp




It’s not you, it’s me

Yesterday Marco gave a really fun and helpful workshop about User/Design Research. He taught us about different research methods and books we could use. Also, all the teams presented their research question and subquestions. It was interesting to see what the other teams came up with and what problems they had formulating their questions. Some were quite similar to our problems.

One assignment we had to do during the workshop was writing a breakup letter to a product or service we started to dislike. It was a fun way to discover what things we first liked about the product, and later started to dislike.

For example, Karen wrote to her Android phone (she’s gotten herself an iPhone 5 now):

Dear old Android phone,

I know you are going through a difficult time, now your screen is broken and you are turning off at random times, but I don’t accept these kinds of behaviour anymore, it is giving me a hard time as well. You’ve let me down too many times. I kind of liked that I didn’t have to care too much about you, but I don’t think you have enough to offer me. I also want to take pretty photos and be able to use the apps they offer for iPhones. And now we’re talking about other phones, I have to tell you there already is another phone in my life. I want you to know that I’m not kicking you out of the house, but I don’t want to use you anymore.

Kind regards,


Suzanne wrote about her laptop (Dell):

Dear laptop,

I know we have a long history together, but we need to talk. This isn’t working anymore. At first you were a good looking and really active computer, but now you won’t even get out of my bed anymore. It seems like you’ve become heavier and heavier. When I’m working I’m forced to hook up with others. I know you love to get hot and steamy and like to make a lot of noise, but I’m not in that kind of stuff anymore. I can’t bring you to fun places because you are simply too fat.

I’m really sorry that I have to tell you this, but I’ve fallen in love with someone fitter and more beautiful..



Later this week, we hopefully will have a skype conversation with our partner to discuss the research questions. We think this will help us go on with our research.

Post a Comment

Your email is never shared. Required fields are marked *

To use reCAPTCHA you must get an API key from