I approached the Crazy 8s exercise from the angle of the “Filter” function, using physical or quasi-physical mechanisms found in other unrelated industries—eg., travel websites, audio mixing boards, and spaceship controls. The competition examples I studied (Netflix, BookTrust, and Skybrary) lacked the fidelity that a reader might want when dialing in what movie or book selections they would like to browse. For instance, a reader—i.e., the parent—often must select a book that appeals to a broad age range. A 3-year-old might also enjoy 8-year-old level reading, but also 2-year-old levels, and perhaps even earlier. Similarly, a 6-year-old might enjoy 3-year-old level books but also might reach up into pre-teen-level fiction in certain cases.
I applied a similar logic to genres, since clear lines dividing different realms often don’t exist. A sci-fi title might stretch simultaneously into fantasy and education. My sketches pose the question: Could an effective content filtering system take on a near-analogue fidelity, giving the user (typically the parent–reader) hi-fi control over how they select their children’s books?