Process Blog 02

Studio Element III 2nd week (04/04/2016 – 04/08/2016)

Summary of 2nd week
  • Reading
    • Empathy on the edge (IDEO)
    • Universal Methods of Design (Textbook)
      • Affinity Diagramming, Bodystorming, Personal Inventories, Role-playing, Scenarios
  • Activity / Discussion
    • Charette debrief, affinity diagrams
    • Discussion
      1. Who are “extremes”? Why does IDEO argue for working with them?
        • Every diverse group has a different perspective and the broad range of experiences compare to one specific demographic.
      2. Why are scaling and sustaining design empathy important to IDEO?
        • Sustaining design: Infrastructure / use after use
          [Video] empathy: the human connection (the Cleveland clinic)
      3. What is the relationship between qualitative and quantitative data in empathetic design?
        • It is important to explore enough from quantitative data to qualitative data to get an accurate result. Even though design empathy helps to get a deep emotional understanding and increase the possibility of innovation, we may lose the focus on a problem if we consider too much on qualitative and emotional data. On the other hand, if we only rely on only quantitative data, a complex design problem cannot be solved in innovative ways that approach to various type of stakeholders.
  • Assignment
    • Make a list of ideas based on your interactions with the seniors
    • Team contract
    • Poster peer review
  • Teamwork
    • Affinity Diagram
    • Poster draft
Reflection of 2nd week

This activity of the 2nd week was mainly focused on the step by step group discussion and work to make a draft of a poster. Since I have no experience in making affinity diagrams as a group, the textbook reading and online research were very helpful on understanding what I need to learn from this activity. Thus I tried all the ideas that can be organized with meaningful hierarchy whose subtopics containing “Need of client, Poster content, Key words, Visual Interest, What IMD is” under the main topic “IMD senior project showcase poster”. The group members organized all the thoughts and ideas under these subcategories to visualize all the information. However, we did not chose only one idea for the draft because of different opinions and tastes on the poster design. Thus, each team member made each rough draft and took a vote to decide one design for the rough draft. Two rough designs got same votes from the poll so we picked more experimental design over the conventional type of poster design. What I have learned during these process was timing is very important to make a decision. Because, we had to make a choice as a group in short given time. The final decision does not always reflect all member’s opinions. How can we be more accurate and critical at the moment of decision? That is a new assignment for me that I need to consider for a successful group choice.

Also, I would like to add my reflection on the main reading “Empathy on the edge”. Before I write my reflection on the reading, I would like to record down a report of my personal feelings. The article was very interesting as I have never read an article that explains the relationship between empathy and design in depth. More specifically and personally, I have never read an article about empathy and design with my first language in depth. Since I have read the article “Data and Civil Rights” from Dr. cardenas’s  class, I started to recognize the reality that the major/advanced ideas and thoughts regarding media design and technology start from the English-speaking world. (All the major computer languages are English/alphabet based languages.) Like what the article “Data and Civil Rights” says, “National origin and language challenges” can be a barrier to access to the cutting-edge of digital technology.

The contents in “Empathy on the edge” was quite interesting. I enjoyed reading how this article put on emphasis on the ability of “design empathy”. I deeply agreed that understanding of, and sensitive to another person’s feeling can be a great approach that can solve a complex real-world design challenge. In addition, this qualitative data should be balanced with quantitative data. We can lose the focus on a problem if we focus too much on qualitative and emotional data since we are human beings with feelings. (I am especially easy to get lost with my direction when a topic stimulates my sensitivity.)  Thus, considering both data types enables us to solve a problem in the human-centered way and also get numeric data for strong supports.


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