Interaction designer @ Bluejay


Team Bluejay Eindhoven is a multidisciplinary student team that is exploring what role autonomous domestic drones can play in the healthcare sector.
During my time at bluejay I was head of the interaction design team and software responsible of this team.
My task varied from defining the concept, implementing interaction features and align this with the other teams.


Vision of the project

- To explore the possibilities of a drone in healtcare context that is autonomous, safe indoors, understands human behaviour and can help with daily tasks.-


Bluejay is an inteligent and social drone that helps with daily tasks in the healthcare environment, by bringing objects for example.

The drone


Shielding, an outer frame around the propellors and an always reachable emergency button. Plus built-in software safety procedures.


Through multiple sensors and cameras the drone analyzes the environment. It uses this data to plan a flight path and fly autonomously.


With the gripper the drone can hand stuff to people. Through the camera it can monitor the environment and alert when needed.


The drone has a happy and enthusiastic character which is expressed through the eyes and sound. It can perceive people through the front camera and reacts to them.

The final presentation

To showcase the capabilities of the drone to our partners and the rest of the world we did a
tic-tac-toe demo in the Maxima Medisch Centrum, a Dutch children hospital. At this presentation serval Dutch national news channels were present.

The design process

The project was kicked off with a co-creation sessions with our partners from healthcare and industry to identify the core potential. This lead to our vision. Throughout the design process we were in close contact with our partners to get feedback and technical assistance when needed.

Interaction design

The main interaction design challenge was the design of the character and how it reacts to certain user inputs. Based on the vision of the project the drone has a helpful friendly character with a playful edge. To realize this I made an interaction design focused on the tic-tac-toe game.

Finite state machine

To define and visualise when the drone is reacting to user input I created a finite state machine.

Animation Design

Based on the finite state machine and the desired character I designed eye animations to express this


I programmed the final eye animations and face recognition software in the drones system using Python.

Technical limitions

The screens of the eyes will always display the same image plus the animation could not take up too much processing power of the raspberry pi, the whole flying system was running parallel. To realize bringing the interaction and flying software together I worked closely together with the software engineer of the flying and control team.

Friendly through aesthetics

The blue top shielding was made to physically create a barrier in front of the propellers as well to hide them.
The main challenge was creating the foam outer ring taking aesthetics, strength, and weight in account. After exploring several types of paint, carbon fiber spray and glass fiber as a coating fabric was chosen, it is light and smooth.

Other responsiblities

Next to my responsibilities as an interaction designer in the team, I worked on the electronic circuit of the drone towards the presentation day. This included circuit design changes and implement them.

My thoughts

Throughout the project I clearly saw the value of design. I found myself to be the link between the software and mechanical engineer, which I could understand because of my technical design background, and the marketing responsible. Since making a working prototype for the demo was a big focus point in this project my practical skills of just starting building and trying sped up the process a lot.