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What is a Conceptual Design?
1 .Technical Writing 2013 Unit 3: designing for Change Part 2
2 .In this unit… Our focus: Designing for change Our aim: Not just change, but change for the better ! Our influences: Activity Theory User-Centered Design Embodied Interaction Our methods: Contextual Inquiry & inspiration from Rational Unified Process Our Assignments: Individuals revise document for the web . Teams create multiple project pitch ideas for midterm proposal
3 .Theoretical Influences Activity Theory – understanding the relationship between human behavior and the tools they use (Vygotsky et al.) User-Centered Design – placing the needs of users prominently in the design process. Embodied Interaction – An approach to interacting with software systems that emphasizes skilled, engaged practice rather than disembodied rationality.
4 .User-centered Design User-centered Design: a design philosophy that puts the users’ needs at the center of the design process. It states that design is iterative in nature and users should be considered at multiple stages of product development. Designers are encouraged to try to think like users when coming up with design solutions. These solutions are then exposed to real users. Testing reveals some of the design flaws. Designers then are supposed to correct them and iteratively go through this process again and again.
5 .Conceptual design Planning with the user in mind
6 .What is Conceptual Design? Conceptual designs are scalable drawings that define the basic parameters of the project. They are usually void of detail, dimensions, and technical notes so you can review and modify the design with ease. T hese designs are in preliminary stages of development. They are intended to explore ideas. Their primary function is to establish a starting point.
7 .How do we do User-Centered Design? One method is to employ conceptual design in the planning phase of any design project. The goal of conceptual design is to... Focus on what the product does Conduct audience analysis on how the user interacts with the design based on the structure of work/activity
8 .Conceptual Design aims to... Identify the goals and expectations of how each audience type interacts with the design under different circumstances of use Consider how will the new design transform the targeted activity Account for what business needs are behind product development Conceptual design answers the question: What does this product/technical document do?
9 .Why conceptual design? Quality assurance—provide a solution model for baseline evaluation Formal example—team members can utilize their strengths in contributing to the design process with a clear understanding of design targets Watch this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jo2SG4JhohQ
10 .Conceptual Design Reports = Technical Documents By technical , we mean that your readers/users are insiders – often experts in both the technical area as well as the organizational context in which the design will be implemented. Users will expect to see details about the design features you have devised as well as the methods/sources you have consulted to arrive at these.
11 .Conceptual Design & Persuasion This type of document makes use of an implied persuasion and should argue that... Your design’ s basic features match the needs of the client and the end-users. Your team is technically competent, thorough, and careful to keep the clients’ interests (practical, financial, ethical, etc.) at the forefront. Y our design is innovative, truly capable of transforming the social practice you target.
12 .Using Conceptual Design approach for visual design exercise part 2 Apply Conceptual Design to your web-page re-design assignment. As you map out the changes you want to make on paper, be sure to incorporate design principles from TCT Ch.18, the Gestalt videos, the article: ”An Exploration of Website Redesigns: Tips & Examples,” and additional readings from this unit. Use one of the suggested tools listed in the assignment description to transform your design concept into the re-design of the home page of a poorly organized web page. Y our final document should be 3-4 well-designed PDF pages that would be representative of how the new web page should look. Use this naming convention: LastName_Design2.pdf
13 .Teamwork: Putting CD into Practice STEP 1: Make screen shots of the home page of the website that you will redesign. Save as PDFs. Print or Display them. STEP 2: Discuss the website’s design with your team Ask team members how they would interact with this site. Identify problematic design choices. Brainstorm ideas for change. STEP 3: Using Conceptual Design approach, map out on paper the proposed changes you want to make.
14 .Putting CD into Practice cont. 2 STEP 4: Examine content and create a document shell by outlining the document. (This outline may be modified or reorganized in step 5 below.) STEP 5: Find the natural divisions of information and create headings to group information together. STEP 6: Establish a process for drafting that includes version control . (For example McCool_Design2_2.0)
15 .Putting CD into Practice cont. 3 STEP 7: Analyze the amount of information that must be changed STEP 8: Determine how the document is used by this particular information ecology. STEP 9: Incorporate design principles from TCT Ch.18, the Gestalt videos, the article: ”An Exploration of Website Redesigns: Tips & Examples,” and additional readings from this unit.
16 .Putting CD into Practice cont. 4 STEP 10: Analyze information gleaned so far. What else do you need to know? Find out by... Making a list of basic functionality & features for the current system in place – where are the obvious gaps between your user/client needs and this list? Going over the list carefully to add detail from your CD work, then go over it again to separate out implementation specific details STEP 11: Create a Prototype (We won’t actually do this part of the process b/c this is a simulated activity. However, if it were real, you would want a prototype.)
17 .Prototypes The Next Step in Iterative Design Approach
18 .What is a prototype? A prototype is a physical representation of a design idea that the team wants user feedback on. Users should be able to do work with the prototype so that the design idea it represents can be tested.
19 .A prototype is not… A model , diagram , or other conceptual artifact. These are not very useful for getting real user feedback because they are static and not functional.
20 .A prototype is also not… A DEMO... With a demo (short for demonstration), the designer does all the work , either by automating a sequence that gets played back…or by guiding users through a work sequence.
21 .So…why prototype? Prototypes allow the user to be the final arbiter of the design. Consider the difference between the two approaches . .. This... Or this... Design ..Design..Design..Design use Design D esign D esign Design use use use use
22 .Prototyping allows you to… Examine your design ideas to see what will work for your users Explore how work practice will be supported (or not!) in the design Discover emergent work practices Observe what the overall experience of the new work environment will offer Find out if work processes (e.g. a known sequence) are coherent in the new system Involve users in the design process…
23 .Using the evidence There are three main ways you’ll use the information from prototyping... To continually improve the design To justify design decisions To clarify issues for the implementation team The final step in a project cycle is moving from prototype to finished product and the implementation of the new design.
24 .Assignment: Visual Exercise Pt. 2 After you have finished reading this slide deck, go back to slides 12-16 and work through Steps 1-10. Then, for Step 11— the prototype , modify this so that your PDF re-designs of the web homepage will represent what you would done if you were actually redesigning a website for an employer.