Re-examining Design for Open Hardware

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In the context of open source hardware, the designer must embrace openness in a way unnatural to our training....give people a platform, and sit back and watch them play! What needs to happen in open …

In the context of open source hardware, the designer must embrace openness in a way unnatural to our training....give people a platform, and sit back and watch them play! What needs to happen in open source hardware is a democratization of design on every level. We need to rethink our process, point of view, and role in design to reflect a platform approach that pulls cues from open source software.

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  • 1. Re-examining Design for Open Hardware Dave Vondle, IDEO Open Hardware Summit 9/22/10 Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 2. The BUGbase UI exploration Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 3. the challenge A short two week exploration into the main UI for the BUGbase module. The goal was to !nd ways to make the BUGbase more delightful, understandable and immediately more usable right out of the box without increasing the cost of the unit signi!cantly. what is buglabs? A new kind of hardware company that aims to allow a new generation of engineers to express their creativity and build any type of device they want. Make mashups as applicable to hardware as it is to web services. Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 4. process vs product in many ways the process of designing in the open, sharing everything, was as interesting as the product design itself. • extreme collaboration • rapid feedback • public missteps see all the gory details: https://client.ideo.com/buglabs/ Monday, September 27, 2010
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  • 6. comments on the first blog entry (first 2 days) ... Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 7. comments on the first blog entry (first 2 days) ...some ideas... Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 8. Mid-Project Concepts Concept 1 Concept 2 Concept 3 Concept 4 Concept 5 Electronic Ink over Tactile Color LCD with Capacitive Monochrome Matrix LCD w/ Customizable Illuminated NTE Microdisplay with Switches Touch Multicolor segmented backlight Buttons with Side panel Trackball Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 9. icon strip: Concept 4 - LED Tactile Switches with side status display paper or printable “transparency” material permits user-customized icon sets. button faces: button fronts join with button tree to form slot for icon strip. tactile switches: mounted to mainboard button tree: tree provides mounting surface for button faces, rear of icon strip slot, and !ex members for tactile switches Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 10. Concept 4 - Interchangeable Printable Icon Sheets included icons: default icon set may include basic functions or “numbered” buttons to support out of box use. drop-in loading: full strip drops into button bar slot for simple change-out Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 11. Concept 4 - Icon illumination tinted button fronts: optional tinted plastic can make buttons “disappear” when not backlit Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 12. Concept 4 - Button illumination button illumination: adjustable color/intensity illumination can be used alone to indicate button status or function. Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 13. Concept 4 - Icon illumination icon illumination: icon backlighting can delineate groupings of connected button functions or highlight active buttons. Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 14. Concept 4 - Interaction Design Separation of functional areas: Status, User, Connectors Pros • simplicity • in!nitely customizable labeling; high resolution graphics • overt interface; visible buttons, tactile feedback • glanceable • does not compete with modules • obvious boundaries of functionality Cons • multiple apps or multiuse scenarios ill suited • minimal ability to display information • single level of depth; no menu structures possible Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 15. Concept 1 - Fixed Segment Electrophoretic Display w/ Tactile Switches !xed-segment electronic ink: !exible "xed-segment electronic ink display for tactile switches: high contrast. custom 23 segment per letter mounted to main board eliminate font for readability and brand distinction daughterboard PCB. provide tactile feedback for button presses. tactile bumps: provide an affordance for locating the tactile switch below load distributing plate: improve button feel and distribute load from tactile switches over a larger area. Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 16. Concept 1 - Interface Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 17. Concept 1 - Interface Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 18. Concept 1 - Interface Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 19. Concept 1 - Electronic Ink Segment De!nition System Menu Map comments about interaction design for Concept B Interaction Flow • !xed segment limitation; 4 characters per button • !xed number of buttons (8) • menu structure and navigation challenges • information retained without power • high contrast • no illumination Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 20. Reflections on an Open Design Project Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 21. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 22. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Ideally, be your audience Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 23. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Ideally, be your audience Be prepared to dedicate 20% of your time to documentation and collecting feedback Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 24. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Ideally, be your audience Be prepared to dedicate 20% of your time to documentation and collecting feedback Openness supports rapid communication Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 25. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Ideally, be your audience Be prepared to dedicate 20% of your time to documentation and collecting feedback Openness supports rapid communication You don’t own your design, everyone does Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 26. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Ideally, be your audience Be prepared to dedicate 20% of your time to documentation and collecting feedback Openness supports rapid communication You don’t own your design, everyone does Community doesnʼt come easy or free Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 27. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Ideally, be your audience Be prepared to dedicate 20% of your time to documentation and collecting feedback Openness supports rapid communication You don’t own your design, everyone does Community doesnʼt come easy or free Communication and contextualization takes care Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 28. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Ideally, be your audience Be prepared to dedicate 20% of your time to documentation and collecting feedback Openness supports rapid communication You don’t own your design, everyone does Community doesnʼt come easy or free Communication and contextualization takes care Profiting from a community is delicate Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 29. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Ideally, be your audience Be prepared to dedicate 20% of your time to documentation and collecting feedback Openness supports rapid communication You don’t own your design, everyone does Community doesnʼt come easy or free Communication and contextualization takes care Profiting from a community is delicate Asynchronicity is a 24/7 team member Monday, September 27, 2010
  • 30. Reflections on an Open Design Project Know your audience, communicate in their language. Ideally, be your audience Be prepared to dedicate 20% of your time to documentation and collecting feedback Openness supports rapid communication You don’t own your design, everyone does Community doesnʼt come easy or free Communication and contextualization takes care Profiting from a community is delicate Asynchronicity is a 24/7 team member Brutally honest feedback improves quality Monday, September 27, 2010
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  • 42. What does this mean for Designers? Platform Design Look to successful open source software projects, many times there is a lead architect who creates a framework, or platform that enables others to participate. This same person usually manages the project trunk to steer the project The trunk can exist to fulfill general needs or act as a higher volume, lower cost object by leveraging economy of scale The branches can fulfill certain “Long Tail” needs, as a configurable options or modifications of the trunk. (Peter’s example of design for vision impaired) Let go We must challenge ourselves to let go of the reins, and put our talents into enabling the community to work productively with us. Together we can create objects that hold a new kind of relevance that can only emerge from a collective process. Monday, September 27, 2010