Thing-Centered Design

IDE Design Master Class for Professionals

A New Approach to Designing with the Internet of Things

As objects around us begin to collect and exchange data, it is possible they may begin to suggest ecosystems and enable designs we could never think of. Thing-Centered Design (TCD) is a new way of researching and designing in partnership with objects, data and algorithms that looks into the creative possibilities of post-industrial design. TCD offers a toolbox of concepts and unconventional design methods that complement human-centered design skills and expand designers’ ability to frame and solve problems.

Curriculum


Contemporary things (from connected products to intelligent personal assistants to smart contracts) can “sense” and “think” in ways that previous industrially produced objects could not. A fresh perspective is needed to fully understand how things will take part in design and use next to us. This fresh perspective is Thing-Centered Design.

Learning Objectives

During this master class you will:

  • understand what is a thing in the post-industrial era;
  • apply thing-centered design in ways that complement human-centered design;
  • select and devise thing-centered tools and techniques for expanding your imagination and capabilities by enlisting things as co-ethnographers and co-designers;
  • select and devise thing-centered tools and techniques in design practice.

Content

  • Thing-centered design theory and methodology;
  • Methods and tools of thing-centered design;
  • Cases and examples of thing-centered design

Speakers

Programme

9:00Registration and welcome drinks
9:30Introduction and overview
Overview of the master class, aims and structure, expectations and background of the participants
10:00Lecture – Fundamentals of Thing-Centered Design
Overview of thing-centered design as a new way of researching and designing that looks into the creative possibilities of the Internet of Things.
11:00Break
11:30Case study - Thing-Centered Design in practice
Discussion of a case study in thing-centered-design. Application of main insights to participants’ own practice.
13:00Lunch
at the Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering
14:00Workshop – Doing research with things as co-ethnographers
Introduction to Thing Ethnography and related data collection methods – how to gain access to data worlds and trajectories unattainable with traditional design methods. Exercises for practicing the application of the presented methods.
15:30Break
16:00Case study by guest speaker: Benefits of Thing-Centered Design for Interaction Design
Discussion on the applicability of principles of thing-centered design
17:00Wrap-up and conclusive thoughts
17:30End of the first day
9:30Reflections and adjustments
10:00Workshop – Designing with things as co-designers
Introduction to Interview with Things and related methods for ideation and conceptualization – how to design things humans could never think of. Exercises for practicing the application of the presented methods.
11:00Break
11:30Workshop with a guest company - Practicing Thing-Centered Design
Group work aimed at thing-centered research and design for a real case, with an evaluation moment at the end.
13:00Lunch
at the Porceleyne Fles
14:00Workshop with a guest company - Practicing Thing-Centered Design (continued)
Group work aimed at thing-centered research and design for a real case, with an evaluation moment at the end.
15:30Break
16:00Case study by guest speaker: Benefits of Thing-Centered Design for Service Design
Discussion on the applicability of principles of Thing-Centered Design
17:00Wrap up and conclusive thoughts
17:30Drinks and closing

Practical Information


How to prepare?
No preparation required.

Materials
Hand-outs of all lectures will be provided with space for personal notes. All materials provided are included in the course fee.

After the course
After the course, a pre-set consultation timeslot will be offered to all participants to share experiences and ask questions to the IDE Master Class. The format and the timing will be discussed with the participants during the IDE Master Class.