[+] Author and Article Information
Sumit Narsale

350 West Washington Street, Suite 600 Tempe, AZ 85281 sumitnarsale@gmail.com

Ying Chen

620 Obsidian Dr. San Jose/CA, CA 85287-6106 ychen228@asu.edu

Manikandan Mohan

x Tempe, AZ 85287-6106 mmohan5@asu.edu

Jami J. Shah

1151 S Forest Ave Tempe, AZ 85287 jami.shah@asu.edu

1Corresponding author.

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 xx xx, xxxx. Assoc. Editor: Francesco Ferrise.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4043231 History: Received September 22, 2017; Accepted January 31, 2019


Computer tools for embodiment and detailed engineering design (CAD) evolved rapidly in the past 35 years and are now pervasive throughout 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 inter-connected 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. Firstly, this research has created a holistic framework with interlaced knowledge bases from a wide range of methods, as opposed to past research which have relied on single experiential only method. Secondly, we have formulated algorithms to support several intuitive methods, such as contextual shifting, analogical reasoning, provocative stimuli and combinatorial play.

Copyright © 2019 by ASME
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