Design: Beyond the Ineffable, Toward Better Tools, and Always with People in Mind.
Design, long fallen through the cracks of university education, now comes to the fore in domains as diverse as business, engineering, and computer science. Changes in the world economy, advances in technology, and growing recognition that complex problems demand more comprehensive approaches fuel current interest in "design thinking." Yet as a discipline, our understanding of design—a "science of the artificial" if ever there was one—remains at best fragmentary, even amongst those who practice it the most. A deeper understanding of design and design processes will further our ability to do it and teach it, and to develop methods and computational tools for design. Against this background I will show software and hardware prototypes of design systems, from sketch recognition to modular robotics to tangible interaction.
Mark D Gross (BS Architectural Design, MIT 1978; PhD design theory & methods, MIT 1986) works at Carnegie Mellon University on computational construction kits, tangible interaction, computer-supported critiquing, creativity, and modular robotics for education. He has worked on constraint programming languages and sketch recognition. He teaches tangible interaction design and directs the Computational Design Laboratory in the School of Architecture. He also serves as the chair of graduate programs in the School of Architecture and Associate Head of the School.
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