Experiences in implementing design heuristics for innovation in product design
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The aided decision processes are expected to improve the design tasks by the reduction of uncertainty, which is one of the principal aspects that interferes with designer choices. These methods can optimise the problem solution by the time reduction in the iterative decision-cycles that can be based on previous knowledge. This article is based in the utilisation of a knowledge based method in design heuristics, which are defined as a set of procedures that allows both, discovery and acquisition, of a solution for a particular problem by the implementation of a strategy, guided by knowledge derived from the experience. This is applied to design area by the extrapolation of technical or conceptual knowledge that has been previously applied and proven in similar problem-solving processes and providing reference points within designs processes as well. For this reason the research focuses on the development of a design case in order to evaluate the interaction between the user and the guided problem approach. The objective was the analysis between two different design processes by the comparison of the implementation of heuristics based method and conventional design techniques in a design case. The purpose was to compare the outcomes of both experiments, taking as a basis the following setup: The design case proposed was carried out by two different teams, where the first team was instructed to use conventional problem-solving approaches such as Pahl & Beitz and Ulrich & Eppinger and the second one was intended to use the heuristics based method. The design task given to both teams was the development of a methane production system by the use of organic waste with the incorporation of technologies to allow the variables control, in other words, an automated biodigester; this allows to have an outcome all teams easy to comparable between each other. Each team performed the task separately, in order to avoid external influence in the process. All of this to proof that with the aid of tools based on heuristic strategies might enhance the innovation and diversification in design alternatives and strengthens conceptual exploration by providing more detailed concepts in early stages of the process. © 2017, Springer-Verlag France SAS.