Vicarious Surgical

A surgical robot that uses VR and 3D screen technology to look and move around the patient’s abdomen

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MY ROLE: sole UI/UX designer, defined systems requirements and architecture, supervised design intern

About Vicarious

Vicarious Surgical is making a surgical robot that can more naturally map to a surgeon's movements, allowing them to quickly learn how to use the system and perform procedures. It does this by having a camera and two articulating arms, making it move similar to your head and two arms. This makes it more natural to predict how to use the surgical instruments.

My Role

I was the sole designer on the design of all digital systems. I did work in many capacities, such as:

  • figuring out what system requirements needed to be in order for users to understand how to use it
  • helping map out who the users were at all touchpoints with the system
  • designing and prototyping different mechanics for robotic controls
  • adjusting digital designs based on hardware changes
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Pre-FDA Approval and NDAs

Sorry most of the work I completed at Vicarious is very heavily NDA’d due to not being released or used in live procedures so I'll be illustrating these in a way that will hopefully not give you enough information to steal any company ideas 💖

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IDEATING AND PROTOTYPING

I created the first set of Unity prototypes to test design ideas that would eventually lead to a patent filing for new ways of controlling a surgical robot inside of a human body

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Leading Digital Design

I collaborated with a large cross functional team (software and hardware engineers, human factors, industrial design, clinical, regulatory)to define system requirements for FDA documentation, as well as design all digital components of the system--from VR to 3D screens to 2D displays, as well as leading the UX to determine how they all interacted.

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Leadership

I managed the first design internship, taking on a UI/UX intern who was eventually hired on in a design capacity. I put together the job description, designed a short (1 hr) design challenge, and conducted all interviews.

Learnings

  • FDA compliance is hard 😢
  • Always listen to the other departments--they’re trying to make your life easier in the long run
  • Regulatory requirements make it hard to iterate as quickly as I’d like to work but they are there to make sure people don't die

Colophon

Designed by me and built using Semplice and custom code. Fonts used are Iosevka and Combine