What I learned
The Solar Decathlon was a great experience in which I learned many different things.
I gained a lot more experience in project management, teamwork and dealing with unforeseen situations. It also
taught me more about topics such as persuasive design, smart systems, sustainability and designing for different cultures.
In every step of the design process, I tried to think about our vision and about how we could reflect this in our designs.
It was important to show that the concept of LINQ is much more than a smart home. It is about sharing facilities (such as cars, bikes and washing machines), social cohesion and innovation.
Although the feedback on the app was great, I feel it could have been better if we had put more thought into the conceptual process.
We wasted a lot of time working on features that in the end didn't work.
This Solar Decathlon project was built entirely from scratch with zero budget and depended heavily on partners and sponsors.
In the beginning, we put too much energy into thinking, preparing and designing for the appliances and sensors we were hoping for;
however, we were not sponsored for these in the end.
Moreover, the fact that many students worked part-time made the communication process sometimes tough.
Overall, it was an amazing experience.
It was great to see all the teams working so hard on their house and it was really inspiring to visit teams from other countries and learn from their approaches.