Vive is a smart wearable concept with integrated sensors that monitor the wearer’s biometrics related to alcohol consumption and keeps them synced up to their designated party group, so friends know if something’s wrong. It is designed to be desirable to young people, while keeping them safe and connected as they party. Vive amplifies existing social networks, making sure individuals don’t get separated from their group. When things get out of control, Vive makes sure a user is not alone.
Mason Catt (Interaction Design)
Kristina Colleen (Interaction Design)
Courtney Dutton (Informatics — Human Computer Interaction)
Gwenyth Hardiman (Human Computer Interaction + Design)
Abigail Steinem (Visual Communication Design)
My Role:
Problem development and research, interaction design, product photography.
Media Coverage:
Microsoft Research Faculty Summit — Design Expo 2014 (Scrub forward to 2:00:00)
Awarded — "Best Product Concept"
GeekWire, July 2014
DanceMusicNW, July 2014
Elite Daily, September 2014
KOMO 4 News, September 2014
Marie Claire, September 2014
Perez Hilton, September 2014
Total Sorority Move, September 2014
USA Today, September 2014
Vive was presented at the Microsoft Research Faculty Summit as a part of Design Expo 2014. This project was done in response to the theme "Billions of Sensors". We are excited and honored to be able to represent the University of Washington, as well as the United States, among 9 top interaction design programs from Brazil, Israel, Denmark and the United Kingdom.
We began our research by speaking with SARVA, the Sexual Assault and Relationship Violence Activists, at the University of Washington, and they highlighted the reality that alcohol heavily contributes to sexual assaults that happen to and by college students. In fact, at least half of sexual assaults involve alcohol. Frighteningly, alcohol is the weapon of choice for people whose aim it is to rape and assault.
No one blames young people for wanting to have a good time. We recognize that drinking and partying happen. It’s not going to change, but it could definitely be safer. This is our problem space. Our aim is to intervene in these risky, alcohol-fueled social situations to reduce the occurrence of sexual assault and keep young people safe, without killing the fun, and while actually enhancing it.
There is a larger picture of sexual assault. We’re not naive about this and aren’t claiming Vive can stop all sexual assaults. Once a predator has decided to attack and the circumstances allow for it, there’s very little that can be done that doesn’t leave all the burden of help on the victim themselves. With Vive, we’re intervening here earlier in this timeline, crucially, before an individual has been removed from the safety of their social network.
Vive allows you to daisy chain your band to your friends and establish your party group. These are the people who receive alerts if Vive senses anything amiss.
Monitoring your drunkenness through alcohol and dehydration sensing, Vive privately prompts you to check in on your state with a simple vibration. Squeezing the band briefly lets Vive know everything’s cool. If you choose not to acknowledge it, however, or you’re not able to within a certain time, your friends are alerted to take action. The check in interval decreases as it sees your inebriation level increasing.
Your friends in your party group receive alerts when when you are under duress. The Vive app allows friends to find each other in large clubs and venues.a
Vive bands are handed out at the entrance to venues as a replacement for ticketed wristbands. Tapping and holding your phone connects your band to your Facebook profile. 
Vive was designed to utilize and enhance existing social networks. tapping bracelets together makes a connection, sending a friend request to both parties. we treat this interaction as a trojan horse to deploy the safety features of vive. a wearable that senses your alcohol level may not sound appealing to young people and can even be a scarlet letter, ousting you in a crowd. we use vive's social features as a trojan horse to mask and deliver safety at these venues.

A few selected screens of the Vive companion app. From here you set up your bands, can find your firends if they need help, and review all of the connections you made through out the night.
As a part of the Vive app, the timeline keeps track of all of the new connections users make while out partying. They can revisit their timeline at a later date to review the connections they made and decide who to approve and deny from further contact. Information doesn't exchanged until both parties have approved the exchange.
Each person's body processes alcohol differently. Because of this, Vive has multiple sensor safeguards in place. A transdermal alcohol sensor monitors ethanol levels excreted through the skin. Another sensor monitors dehydration levels. If your dehydration or alcohol are at dangerous levels, your party group is alerted. A gyroscope and accelerometer are used to sense a total lack of motion; for example if the user passes out. Bluetooth 4.0 is used to connect bands to phones, and bands to other bands. From the phone, GPS and Wi-Fi triangulation provides the location of friends in need, and is only activated when an alert goes off. A majority of these technologies exist in their current forms and are ready for implementation. We forsee miniaturization for the transdermal alcohol sensor, which is presently large and bulky.
We propose entering the market with Vive through events that involve alcohol where wristbands are already the norm, like music festivals, raves, Greek parties, DJ nights. Like 3D glasses, the band can be returned to the venue at the end of the night, wiped, charged and reused to keep costs down. Eventually we envision Vive becoming autonomous: a ubiquitous party accessory you don’t leave home without, like your ID.
Yours truly, sending a friend request to Bill Buxton.


A smart band that uses sensor technology to keep young people safe while out partying.