By Stefan Riehle, Yijian Lan & Alexander Kübler — Strategic Design Project. Time Frame: Oct. 17 -Feb. 18. Visit Midgard.me to see more.
Midgard – A platform where you can manage your personal data yourself
Our world is changing. It’s getting day by day more complex, connected and less transparent for the individual. Every day, we generate tons of data (about 0.5 GB per day), and very few of us know where these data go and for what purpose this data is used. Do we really know how many accounts we have and what information we have on the internet is public?
We are the creators of our data, but we do not really own them. The inventor of the Internet, Tim Berners-Lee, describes this loss of control over personal data as one of the three major threats to the Internet, as we know it today. We at Midgard believe that personal data should be owned and controlled by the people who create it – the users. Today, our data shape our image on the web. If we do not care about our data, nobody will.
The Promise of the Digital Twin (ISG)
Midgard is a software application used to manage personal data. After logging in via the software, data is collected, analyzed and structured in order to make it accessible and safe for the owners. The central point of the data analysis is the detailed profiling process, in which the open and released data are intelligently connected after structuring.
This creates a digital image that the user can freely dispose of. With Midgard it becomes clear how different data and sources are related and for what purpose they are used. This gives you full control over your own data at all times.
Midgard Concept Video
- Data Network– Structure all your public data from different websites and platforms through Data Scraping. Make unstructured data easy to monitor and manage.
- Digital Twin–A personal data based digital identity is created and divided into nine categories.
- Share Data– Profit from your data, make it usable and transfer it seamlessly.
- Stefan Riehle (Strategic & Industrial Designer);
- Yijian Lan (Strategic & Interaction Designer);
- Me (Strategic & Interaction Designer)
- UI/UX Design
- Strategy Development
- Motion Design
- Documentation & Layout
Our Project Process
1. Kick off
In the Information Age, everyone generates much data every day. We don’t know where this data goes and how it is used. Tim Berners-Lee describes this loss of control over personal data as one of the three main threats to the internet. How might we help internet user to knows and manage their public data on the internet?
Team Midgard –"We believe every person must have the right to know about his own data and the power to decide how it is used."
During the research phase we looked at different aspects of data such as, Technology, Internet User Types, Benchmarks, Legislation, Economics of Data and Threats to understand how the digital driven environment works. Through our research, we got a lot of insights, pain points and related technologies of data.
After that, we synthesized all these information. Data influences many areas of our society. We decided to work on the scenario from User’s point of view because as designers we see the biggest potential in shaping our digital future through improving personal interaction with data. We summarized the most important findings of the research in 16 Top findings.
4. Ideation & iterative Design
We want to let people know which kind of personal information about themselves exists in the internet and is accessible for anyone. Through Midgard we want to make data distribution transparent to the user and enable the users to manage their data easily. Who can see my personal information and what is he doing with it?
The idea behind is to implement individuals in the data environment sustainable. For example they can share their data with a price, but not give data for nothing or protect his own personal data from being abused. Through making personal data accessible for the people who own it, they can share and interact with society and economy responsible. User and society could profit from their own data. Our vision is to give personal data more content than making advertisement and products better.
The GDPR strengthens internet user’s rights over their own data but data companies make processes too complicated to perceive these rights. Therefore we want to simplify these processes and visualize data for handling it intuitive. Based on all data the user has generated we create a digital twin, a digital copy that represents the user and can be used for exploration and communication.
5. Strategy & Design
We design our products from the perspective of a startup company. In addition to the product design, we also did a business plan. Our products will be implemented in 2025 because artificial intelligence as the underlying technology is needed to support our service. There are three phases of our business plan. Every phase we have a different business model, focus and key metrics. In the third phase, we designed a hardware product, users can personalize intelligent and smart product with that their own data everywhere.
Team Midgard – We believe, that our efforts will make this world a little bit better
6. Future Thoughts
In order to make our own personal data safe in the digital ecosystem, we have designed a stick with which the digital identity can be transmitted and used in a controlled manner. The key works without software and is exclusively connected to the user account of the user at Midgard in order to avoid possible data leaks.
In addition, we want to make the abstract digital world tangible and comprehensible with a physical product and let the controversial topic become real. We believe that the conscious, sustainable and secure handling of data will in future become a status symbol that can be communicated externally by the user via this key.
Transfer your personal data with the Midgard Key to your environment and personalize everything.
One thing is for sure, we can not stop digitization, but we can shape it. It should not be about preventing data generation or maintaining your own anonymity in the network. We can throw sand into the gearbox, but we can not stop it. We must actively approach the change and use it sustainably to our advantage. In the future, dealing with personal data will be about finding the best balance between privacy and community value. But who decides on this relationship?
We say: everyone! We believe in self-determination and want to maintain it in our digital age. This means more control, transparency and meaningful use of your own data for each individual, but also a strong initiative. By decentralizing data collection and use, we hope for a more even distribution of power and a more sustainable use of data. The digital progress will come - we do not need to stop it, but we have to shape it sustainably.
Thanks for your interest–If you have questions and are more interested in our project feel free to send an email or contact me on LinkedIn.