Live views of our solar system,and the tales of its exploration.

In Blink’s ongoing collaboration with The National Aeronautics and Space Administration, we have been asked to evaluate the potential for modernizing and improving their Eyes on the Solar System application. The app visualizes our entire solar system in real-time 3D, allowing user to freely navigate and observe its planets, comets, moons, asteroids, man-made spacecraft, and more.

With all the data, content and functionality came the application’s main problem: after nearly a decade of patches and additions, it was beginning to feel more like a complex spacecraft simulator, rather than a sleek, modern, and accessible app.

Through the mix of client workshops, user studies and Blink’s own expertise, we came up with a plan for a redesign. We’d move the space sim aspect of the app into a new expert mode, while constructing a narrative-driven user experience as the primary vehicle for exploring all that Eyes on the Solar System (EotSS) has to offer.

Dramatic, Cinematic

The project involved Blink pulling out the big guns. Two of the partners: Bill Flora and Peter Stern, kept the project on course providing the creative and logistical leadership, respectively. Our principal UX designer (and also a Blink partner) Heidi Adkisson deciphered and reorganized EotSS’ information architecture and developed wire-frame plans and prototypes for the user experience. Our star visual designer Megan Greco took upon developing a fresher look for the app, giving it a much needed face-lift and legibility.

My role was to combine and choreograph all these ingredients into a beautiful, interactive motion piece that provided the user with a dramatic, cinematic experience.

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Mars 2020 Live

While the new version of EotSS is still being developed, you can already try some of its functionality in this demo. What you see below is a live representation of Mars 2020 spacecraft on its way to the red planet.

Feel free to use your mouse (or fingers) to rotate the view, zoom around or even navigate throughout the rest of the Solar System. (If you get stuck and want to scroll away, simply use the navigation dots on your right.)

NASA: Eyes on the Solar System

Live views of our solar system, and the tales of its exploration