IDEA9106 Design Thinking

Design is a state of mind



Blog Reflection 7: Affordance – ajat3269

1) Choose one of the objects you selected and described how your initial understanding of its affordances changed over the course of the exercise?

Firstly, I chose the glass-flower vase. Its material and this object is familiar to use. The material is clear-glass, transparent, and as it is used to put flower inside it, it has a small hole upside. We can fill it with tiny objects such as sands or liquid. The natural capacity of this object is to accommodate tiny-things and it is very stable due its weight and its flat-base. People usually use it for decoration and put it in the livingroom or bedroom. What I thought about using this object for different purpose is that we can use it as salt, sugar, pepper, or powder-based spices’ container and put it in the kitchen. It is based on its natural capacity.

Secondly, I tried another object, which is a fork, and sketched it. It is made with stainless steel material, hard, and shiny on its surface. The shape is very handy and have a sharp tip as we can use it to stab food. I think it can be manipulate more than the glass-vase because of its specific shape.

2) Given that affordances is a relational property between a person and an object, how did the manipulation of the object and the person’s abilities inform your understanding of the concept? Did it give you inspiration or insight for how to work with affordances as a designer? Discuss this through the specific objects you explored in the exercise.

I tried to explore the glass-vase first. However it doesn’t give any “unique” other function. And the affordance is basically related to the user experience to use an object in their everyday life. So, if I manipulate the glass-vase, it is just giving the similar experience because of the object’s natural capacity to accommodate tiny-thing. Everyone might be have similar understanding about using it, then it becomes very general, not really giving such a new experience.

So, I chose the second object, which is a fork to be manipulated. It’s a simple object, so I tried to manipulated by covering this object with aluminium foil. By covering the “main function” of the object, I found the other function that definitely different with its initial function. Previously it was used for stabbing something (food), but after manipulated the fork-tip to be flat, we can use this “new” object to scoop, to dig small hole (for gardening), to slice something soft (like cake), and the other similar functions.

When tested the objects before or after manipulation, I found that a person who has experience using fork can recognise it easily, even without seeing the object. It is a very familiar and a daily object. After manipulated it and, again, tested it to a person with a blindfold, the object was recognised by touching the material and guessing the function, imagining what kind of activities she can do with this new object. It illustrates that the affordance is relative and might give different inspiration between people. Working with affordance opens possibility to explore various function depend on everyone’s experience.

DSC_0136 DSC_0141

Research Summary Poster_ajat3269


Tell me more about what is it about.
It is a community activism named “WAYS” which focusing on “youth services”. The community organise young people, provides free educational program for young people and prepare them to be a better future generation. It is non-profit organisation, so they get support from the government and receiving donation to run the program properly.

Tell me more about the challenges they face as a service
WAYS have only one centralized activity centre and organise many members (students) in Bondi Beach. The staffs and teachers work together to run some continuity programs with a lot of members. Only two staffs who work to manage the program and all timetable. Based on that, the challenge the face mainly how to organise their program, members, teachers and the activity as well. Communication become the most issue regarding to have a good interaction between students, teachers, staff, or interaction between them.

I want to know why people feel not really involved?
This finding basically come from the non-activist which state that they interested but not really involved due to the limited time they have. The other reason is they need to be involved in a more attractive activity offered by a community. It such a general issue that happened in young people as they actually the potential target of youth services community.

Why the soc-med doesn’t work well now?
It’s not about the soc-med as general, but the community need to use social-media which is suggested by the interviewee. So, soc-med might be the supporting media to improve communication and interaction as (community) internal or external use.

Have you thought about a way to get the word out about WAYS Youth Services – advertising, posters, requesting volunteers?
As I have interviewed the WAYS’s staff, they share their information through their official website mainly. They provides event information, requesting volunteers, donation, etc in their website. Therefore, there is possibility to enhance the community interaction with public.

Have you thought about crossing the data from your questionnaire and interviews?
The interview and questionnaire data was applied to non-activist. I got chance to interviewing WAYS community two days after the due-date (of research poster submission). I have crossed both sides finding (from the interview) and I use it to define the need from both sides which mostly matched.

POSTER user research summary poster_ajat3269

Blog Reflection 6: Body Storming – ajat3269


How did physically acting out help to explore ideas?

When we have finalized our design ideas, there will be a user testing to see how the design works with the user. Acting is a useful stage to find out the insights after we apply the concept to the user. There might be some problem in-between the design applying process and it helps us much to explore what is the constraint and what the best solution to improve the design concept.

Did you refine your ideas and solutions to the problem through bodystorming? In what way?

As the design concept applied through bodystorming, we basically explore the possibilities to make the better concept through that process. The users become the main focus as they have different behavior through the bodystorming process. The possibilities of solution are raise from any different situation of user. Based on evaluating the constraints faced by the user during the bodystorming, we will find that different situation will be the reason of different solution. It possibly improve our design to be better in the next step of design process.

What was difficult or challenging about bodystorming?

The difficulties of bodystorming usually make us go back to our previous design process; what is bad, what is good, what is less or needed more. So, basically the bodystorming-process refines our design concept with a bundle of ideas, similar idea or even different idea. It could be a matter as we sometimes through the process of ideating or making the concept in very detail, then we have to review it after running a bodystorming.

Does bodystorming lend itself to certain types of problems?

Yes, it does. Some “users” who acting for a bodystorming usually have different problem when they response the instruction. It defines how easy, how difficult, or how our design match/suit to the user. It sometimes evaluates of how we create the situation as much similar as the “real situation”. It might be different to the real situation itself. So, the different user response can be different related to the different situation as well. However, as designer, we have to create a direction of how the bodystorming going well by communicating a clear explanation about the ‘natural way’ of user behavior might be engaged to.-

Blog Reflection 5: Ideating – ajat3269

How did taking the position of an Extreme User influence your thinking in relation to the design challenge? Was it different to how you usually generate ideas and empathy?
As we chose “The Romantic” as our extreme user, it was imagined as “dreamy” character. Firstly, there are many ideas coming in mind related to a romantic character; love, passion, dreamy, individual, nature-explorer, self-enjoyment, etc. However, when I focused it in to the “extreme user” we have to make, I realize that there should be specific to create a design for an extreme user. This might be the way to find the special need for a special character. So, I thought about the possibilities that become constraints as it related to the extreme user behavior.
Secondly, once I decide the specific character, it should be engaged to any specific situation which might be happened or engaged the situation to the interest of a romantic character. Sounds easy at the first, but then I found the difficulty to find a technology-based of what situation that the character might be met. There are some data or issues we us to find the possible situation which is interesting to the user involved. Place, time, problem/ situation, and limitation are the important matter to combine with the user. Afterward, it will illustrate the relevant or irrelevant of the technology-based design application, to understand the user need.
It basically different as I used to generate idea for general character. But, one or more similar character (extreme character) would be the user as we make the differentiation between the user. It generates the way our design can be applied to different user, create such an unique experience when accessing technology-based design.
Did any of the other design thinking techniques (design provocation cards, stories, storyboards, etc.) help you to work through ideas and collaborate with your group members?
The other design thinking techniques definitely help the work to generate and describing the idea and the design as well. The concept sometimes can be easily generated through oral explanation. It needs to pictures the stages using some sketches and maps. Storyboard basically the effective medium to describe idea by its visual. I can easily put my idea into visual and evaluate the idea by taking concern to the visual details, what I should be added or removed from. The group member can evaluate it as well. And the techniques make possible to work with group because it make it easy to communicate the idea and discuss the design (improvement) between group members.

Blog 1: Gift Giving – ajat3269

Multi-tool Kit for Traveller

Himika wanted to give a special gift to a person who like to travel. She got an idea to give a convenience tool kit which is easily brought to everywhere. The idea was to make a multi-tool kit with a small knife, scissor, and two other things inside. however, the problem is the way to bring it into the airport in case if someone forgotten to put it in the luggage. There is always a security-check for “sharp-tool” and this tool must be taken by the airport security officer if we are forgotten to put it in to our luggage. It is also engage to a humanity matters not to lose something special from someone and the way we are ethically obeying the security regulation at the airport. The prototype shows the possibility to solve that problem, mainly in showing the “key-chain-like” appearance (shape, colour) and the convenient function, while it also opens a possibility to overcome the security system matter at the airport with adding a “special material” (I do not know yet what the material is) and an idea that the tool will be automatically locked when meets the security sensory system, as an ethic in obeying the security regulation.


Blog Reflection

How did engaging with a real person, testing with a real person, change the direction your prototype took?

Engaging with a real person makes me understand their need directly. It also possible to specify what kind of design they really need, the emotion they feel when presenting the gift to the other person. Those are accumulated as parts of design process, including the idea, that lead to the prototype making.

What was it like showing unfinished work to another person?

Showing unfinished work to the client sometimes give benefit to raise feedback from the client. As long as we do not change the main idea or the concept it will enable us to make a refinement of the design if it possible.

As a user, how did you interact with your partner’s level of lowly-resolved prototype; how did the level of resolution impact your experience as a user?

I interact with my partner’s level of lowly prototype by figure-out the finished design based on looking and analyzing the prototype. It doesn’t matter how the prototype looked like, but the way of the prototype will show the accurate design function when it finished. The level of resolution impacts my experience by the way it resolves my need as a user. The low level of resolution usually presents a standard design which doesn’t attract the user by it appearance or function.

Design thinking is an iterative, self-directed process. Based on what you learned, what would you go back and do next? What would you do over again?

As a designer, I would like to refine the unsatisfying design in some cases (form, appearance), but not in the main concept because we should start with building the concept and developing it, not to refine it at the last. I would discuss and shared the main concept with the client first before develop it into a form. The next step, I will refine the structure or the appearance to meet the client’s most need then finished it to be a final design.

What principle, what tool would you infuse into the work tomorrow?

I would infuse the basic principle of design making, learn and find out the tool or material of design making related to the kind of design I would make.


 prototype_multitool for travelling

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