top of page
Watson Min TOP



IBM and General Assembly hosted an open software competition for the Watson Workspace.

Design an application for IBM's Watson Workspace using Watson APIs. 


The final product should be something original, usable, useful, and relevant.

Teams would have 5 minutes to present their final ideas.

Winners would represent Austin in a national competition in San Francisco at Connect 2017.

Project time: two days


I was directly responsible for:



I used Sketch, Photoshop and Google Slides to generate our deliverables. I worked with a team of front-end and back-end engineers: Cori Grohman, Nicolas Alliaume and Darryl Balderas.


We began by writing a large a number of ideas on paper. This activity was governed by a timer. Each team member wrote down as many ideas as possible in 5 minutes, then passed the page. This improvisational brain storming session led us to a larger conversation about office pain points and through that conversation we evolved the idea of using Watson for conference calling. Our ideation had tremendous flow and we learned the value of working quickly, without hesitation. 



Once we settled on a direction for our application, the team began to map out user flow. This process aided the discovery of an achievable MVP consisting of two days of work. On the right of the whiteboard you can see sketching to achieve that in our interface. We maintained a team-wide 'keep it simple' approach. 

User Flow

For our Austin hackathon presentation, I crafted a simple interface that communicated essential controls and system status. A stretch goal was animating the Watson logo with a 'processing' effect to let the user know of the apps progress. 

User interface
Slide Presentation

Final presentations in the Austin competition were required to be completed within 5 minutes. This meant that we had to craft a clear and concise slide deck.


I structured our presentation into three parts:

  • an explanation,

  • a live demo of the app

  • a next steps and 'thank you'.


When I crafted the application's explanation slides, I imagined that I was going to pitch our project to a someone in their 80s who had limited experience with technology. I broke the app process down into four steps:

Start Call -------------- End Call ------------- Watson Processes ------------- Results Delivered


I moved forward making simple illustrations resulting in a quick and easy to understand summary for the judges and the audience. You can see the 4 stage illustration I produced below. Cori, our lead engineer and presenter, could talk his way through this efficiently without reading a script. The team felt that the illustration worked well communicating our idea. For our final presentation in San Francisco I produced a cleaner vector illustration seen below and on the right. It is animated to show you how we stepped through the process in our presentation. 


After winning in Austin, the Watson Minutes team decided to construct a web page. The site would act as a resource explaining our application and as a point of contact for our team. 

I learned how to communicate with a unique voice through this process. 

Click on the image to the right and visit the site I created.



Final Product

This is a video of our winning presentation during IBM's Connect 2017 Conference in San Francisco. Cori presented our application to a group of over 50 people. Our Watson Minutes team presented first followed by teams from LA and New York. At the end of  the presentation round, the audience voted and our Austin team won by a narrow margin and received praise at the closing remarks of the conference. We were extremely proud to have won and thankful to IBM and General Assembly for the experience. It's something we will never forget.    

  • Keep communication open and honest.

  • Maintain a narrow scope, and move quickly. 

  • Teams with low frequency egos work well together and win.


Things to consider for future iterations: 

  • Produce a minimum viable product vs. a minimum viable demo.

  • Expand integrations into Google Calendar and Twilio.

  • Create a persona set that reflects a narrow target demographic.

  • Continue to work in a Lean Startup and UX design capacity. 

bottom of page