Usman Fahimullah



Modernizing how we participate in vote in a democracy


The Challenge

Throughout our democracy one thing has stayed relatively the same, is how we vote and participate. As our society has made technological leaps and bounds, the way we consume knowledge has too. There are soo many avenues for a person to gain information as well as mis-information. There currently is no way for a constituent to be able to gather vast amounts of information about candidates, policies, and current events during the election cycle in time to make informed decisions when asked to vote during their busy lives.

Currently America is ranked 29th of all major democracies for voter participation. This is mostly due to the fact that only 41% of Americans actually vote in forms of major elections.



How do we modernize voting for a new generation that has more information being shown than any other prior generation and has been generally participated less in our democracy compared to other generations?



The Solution

Introducing Talli, a new digital platform that allows voters to quickly browse information about propositions, candidates, and current local, state, and national news. This new platform allows voters to gain information in one consolidated platform rather than hunting down important information.



The Research & Analysis

In order for me to fully realize this concept, I looked through tons of articles and information regarding how people are currently consuming news, and how voter participation has changed overtime. For my research I also talked to a couple of experts such as a librarian and a reporter for how they view the current state of fake news across social media. Other points of research was how researchers gather data to verify their data sets.

This lead me to believe that it’s how someone parses information about the candidates and the news stories being run. This can be done quite simply using RSS channels and geo-tagging of news sources. Creating a Hub that acts a way to deliver this specified content and then allowing the user to vote from that knowledge could be the solution. In order for this to be true couple things need to be implemented.

  • How news sources are verified

  • Understanding where the user is located to give more direct news sources from across local, state, and national levels.

  • Expand the user’s current knowledge beyond what they know

  • Show all the candidates and laws that that user can vote for.

  • Allow the candidate to actively support their favored candidate (This is implemented as a for the constituents to back their favored candidates easier and more directly than is currently implemented).

  • Allowing users to have a voter account that allows them to pre-vote anywhere and finalize the vote at a new designated voting booth that syncs with the users’ voter account.



The Platform

To give value to a new system of voting, the platform needed core ideas to give it a strong foundation. These core ideas would then go on to help establish the rest of the identity and why they are necessary for the service to be relevant. The Core Principles are


The Political Identity

People are very irrational trying to think rational, we have multiple views on multiple topics, we flip-flip yet we get categorized mostly for life with just two parties. With the new election platform the political identity also becomes fluid and shifts depending on how the user votes on props, and candidates.


Simplified Information

Voting information is currently scattered across multiple mediums, whether it’s through tv, print, or web. There are many ways to view what the candidate is about but in a very bias way or only showing you specific topic rather than the whole. With the new election platform the information is all collated into one app that allows the user to see what ideas the candidate supports, who supports them, and their ideas.

Seamless Voting

Voting currently is paper based with some digital options available, the voting booths are in a certain location. With the new election platform we aim to remove paper and even the need to go to a specific location and make it more easier for the consumer to do so during their commute as an option and maybe the option to vote on their phone.



User Experience

Talli currently lives in two distinct areas one is a new digital voting booth meant to be used throughout the year rather than just during the voting period as an informational hub. The other area in which Talli lives is a new app that allows everyone to access news, propositions, and candidate data on the go as well the ability to pre-vote. The user experience needed to be able to quickly allow the user to gain information fast and allow the user enough time to make informed decisions.

The UX was centered around how much information the user is able to obtain before making any decisions regarding which candidates or propositions they are voting for. This focus on how the content is being delivered was key for Talli. This meant crafting an on-boarding process that gave the system specific location markers that allowed the platform to quickly find relevant information for the User. Below you’ll see how Talli does this simply for the user through the initial set up.


This is the On-Boarding for Talli.


The Talli Sketch Documentation.

The Talli Sketch Documentation.


Visual Design

The Visual design for Talli was designed to be quite minimalist, this was done to remove clutter and focus on the content being delivered to the user in a clear way. The design was to be as straightforward as possible to make it easier for the user to discover content faster.

In order for this to take place the design needed a modular structure in which the content could live and adapt with depending on the needs of the section or user input. This allows the platform to adapt to multiple scenarios while still keeping the interface clean and simple.



In order to keep things consistent throughout the interface, making sure the typeface was coherent and structured was important. To make sure this was the case I used GT America and GT America Mono since its grotesque nature gives it “neutral” look while the mono version allows the interface to have a more “informative” look and feel to it.


Color Theory

The primary color palette for the Talli interface is mostly comprised of neutral grays with added primary color palettes for specific topics that represent political parties, topics, or issues at hand. The color palette is flexible and can be adapted to have tons of colors in the system as the typography and white space anchor the colors in.



The home feed is comprised of Local, State and National news sections allowing the user to explore content from multiple different sources across the news spectrum fast and fluid. Each section has varied card sets depending on the situation at hand such as news cards, propositions, and candidates running for office.


Click the settings button to change it to Hi-Def




The Candidates page allows you to view all of the current candidates across multiple ranges from city council to judges. When viewing each candidate page the user can view their past voting record, their policies/ what they support, and news articles currently in the news about them. The user also has the option to donate or volunteer or donate directly to the candidate. This was done so each candidate has the ability to run a more direct grassroots operation than whats currently available.


Click the settings button to change it to Hi-Def




When viewing propositions the user has the ability to view them from a couple different viewpoints such as a simplified view and a detailed view. This allows the user to process the information at their own pace. If the current proposition is repealing another proposition, the info page will also show what the previous proposition was to give the user a clearer picture of the proposition is actually doing.


Click the settings button to change it to Hi-Def



Talli Voting Booth

The Talli Voting Booth is designed similarly to an ATM as its something that represents security of something that valuable to an individual while also being approachable. The product design was meant to facilitate something simple and easy to the user. These new voting booths are also meant to placed in more public facing areas such as grocery stores. Using the Talli Platform; the user can login with their Talli account on the new voting booth to get relevant voting information as well as vote directly through these booths and have them count as official votes. The voting booth can also populate pre-votes that the user has selected from their phone onto the voting booth and make their final decisions on the voting booth.

The Voting Booth is designed to be secure using new technologies as well as existing tech to make sure the user’s vote is secure. These security features are:

  • Blockchain Technology

  • Valid Identification

  • Using NFC to login



Key Takeaways

What I’ve taken away from this project is how information can be viewed and gained from a user’s perspective. Thinking about how much information a platform needs to view and show to the user is a delicate balance, one that is up to the designer how to portray that information so it doesn’t overwhelm the user. Talli was an interesting concept to look into and It’s something I had a blast doing from understanding the key aspects to how the app would gain the data to show the user. To establishing core values that the platform must adhere to. I’ll be sure to keep these in mind when developing future product ideas for conceptual ideas and real ones as well.