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Research Papers

Design Ideator: A Conceptual Design Toolbox

[+] Author and Article Information
S. Narsale

Arizona State University,
Tempe, AZ 85287-6106
e-mail: sumitnarsale@gmail.com

Y. Chen

Arizona State University,
Tempe, AZ 85287-6106
e-mail: ychen228@asu.edu

M. Mohan

Arizona State University,
Tempe, AZ 85287-6106
e-mail: mmohan5@asu.edu

Jami J. Shah

The Ohio State University,
Columbus, OH 43210
e-mail: jami.shah@asu.edu

Contributed by the Computers and Information Division of ASME for publication in the Journal of Computing and Information Science in Engineering. Manuscript received September 22, 2017; final manuscript received January 30, 2019; published online June 5, 2019. Assoc. Editor: Francesco Ferrise.

J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng 19(4), 041007 (Jun 05, 2019) (12 pages) Paper No: JCISE-17-1192; doi: 10.1115/1.4043231 History: Received September 22, 2017; Accepted January 31, 2019

Computer tools for embodiment and detailed engineering design (computer-aided design (CAD)) evolved rapidly in the past 35 years and are now pervasive throughout the industry. But todays commercial CAD is geometry-centric, not appropriate for early stages of design when detailed geometry and dimensions are not known. This paper describes a framework and a set of interconnected tools for conceptual design. In this system, a broad range of intuitive and experiential concept generation methods have been operationalized and implemented as databases, artifact repositories, knowledge bases, and interactive procedures to promote divergent thinking. The so-called “Design Ideator” includes methods for flexible and dynamic design problem formulation, re-formulation, and restructuring in the form of hierarchical and re-configurable morphological charts. This tool has been continuously enhanced through three phases of user studies and feedback. The main contributions of this work are as follows. First, this research has created a holistic framework with interlaced knowledge bases from a wide range of methods, as opposed to past research that have relied on single experiential only method. Second, we have formulated algorithms to support several intuitive methods, such as contextual shifting, analogical reasoning, provocative stimuli, and combinatorial play.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Ideator main apps and modules

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Fig. 2

Multilayer decomposition of CEMC

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Fig. 3

Conjunctions and disjunctions in restructuring

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Fig. 4

Experiential design modalities

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Fig. 5

KB for mapping PEs to functions (partial)

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Fig. 6

Cross-linking of DBs and KBs

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Fig. 7

List of data tables used in ideator

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Fig. 8

Interconnectivity of COTS and mechanism KBs

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Fig. 9

Managing alternative subsolutions

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Fig. 10

Designer's workspace example

Tables

Errata

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