SimpList is a mobile app designed to aid in generating and managing a shopping list. The target audience that was chosen for the app was young, professional males who might not have a lot of experience shopping for and cooking healthy meals, but as a young adult, might want to start getting into these habits. The decisions that were made throughout the process of designing the app were guided by user research and a general understanding of the target user’s needs.


The icon for SimpList.


Course Project for Interaction Design Overview during the fall semester of 2014 – Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA

The Team

  • Cassie Taylor – Interaction Designer
  • Ya Gao – Interaction Designer
  • Justin Kahn – Interaction Designer
  • Timmy Burkhart – Interaction Designer

My Role

Interaction Designer

  • Conducted user research with target users in a grocery store, built personas based on these users
  • Designed moodboards to capture user personas and created a design language to communicate to the target users
  • Designed functionality of the app based on user needs and built wireframes of the app navigation
  • Rapidly prototyped the app and delivered a click-through prototype for the final submission


The App

SimpList is designed to help young, professional males generate and manage a grocery list. Each decision that was made during the design process in regards to both the functionality and appearance of the app was informed by user research, and while considering the common lifestyles of our target users.

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A final wireframe design submitted for a Flinto prototype.

The app is designed to help young men learn how to shop for healthier meals by giving them a cookbook feature, in which they first plan what they might want to cook. From the cookbook, the ingredients of each meal can be added to a shopping list, where they can easily be checked off while shopping.

What makes the app more tailored to young, professional males than other shopping apps is that this demographic often doesn’t buy healthy food while grocery shopping because they aren’t aware of what ingredients they can use in cooking their own meals. By encouraging the user to create a shopping list directly from the ingredients of specific recipes, he can get into the habit of picking up ingredients that he can use to cook multiple meals, cutting both precious time and money that would otherwise be allocated to restocking his kitchen.



The process of designing SimpList involved conducting user research, building personas along with scenarios and storyboards, creating a moodboard to capture the persona and guide the creation of a design language, while simultaneously wireframing the navigation and functionality based on user needs. The wireframes were rapidly prototyped and submitted to Flinto to create a clickable prototype.


User Research

The user research process involved going into grocery stores and talking to individuals about their grocery shopping experience. In our research, we encountered at least 3 individuals who were young professional males who said they wanted to buy more meals to cook (instead of only frozen meals), but they never had the right ingredients to cook.

After talking to these individuals and learning more about their lifestyles, goals, and needs, we created a persona that captured the user who we would be designing our app for.

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The final persona, Chad.

The persona was used to guide both the functionality of the app and the visual design. In regards to the functionality, Chad served as the main character in our mock scenarios, which were illustrated through creating storyboards. The storyboards were evaluated for their usefulness to Chad, and helped our team narrow down to the final feature set of SimpList.

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A storyboard illustrating the feature of showing the user what a fresh piece of produce looks like.

Chad was also considered when creating a moodboard, which guided the visual design of SimpList. Through our user research we evaluated the design languages of products that are already marketed to our target users, and created a design language that we felt best communicated with young, professional males.

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The color palette of the final design language of SimpList.

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The fonts of the final design language of SimpList.


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