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Undertake a critique of a technological outcome’s design . Lesley Pearce Technology National Coordinator Team Solutions The Auckland University. Level 8 Learning Objective. Knowledge of Design

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undertake a critique of a technological outcome s design

Undertake a critique of a technological outcome’s design

Lesley Pearce

Technology National Coordinator

Team Solutions

The Auckland University

level 8 learning objective
Level 8 Learning Objective

Knowledge of Design

  • ‘Knowledge of design focuses on understanding the way informed creative and critical development of new ideas is achieved and how these are realised into feasible outcomes.’
  • It is about demonstrating an understanding of complex concepts in design.
  • Understand the importance and impact of design
why and how
Why and How
  • Why would we consider this important to put into our programmes?
  • How will we develop rich learning for our students?
lets start with
Lets start with…

And what personal criteria do we use

what is good design
What is good design?
  • The answer of course depends on whom you ask. If a design is “good” it depends largely on its function. A stylish bottle for a drink may look good, but if you need a special opener to get at the thirst-quenching liquid inside, and then one drop at a time, the design has failed.If a design is good it thus depends first and foremost on the interplay of appearance, function and usability.

Okay we all know plastic bottles are evil. They consume massive amounts of energy to produce, statistically only spend 30 minutes in our hands before spending the next thousand years in a landfill. So what criteria do we use to judge the quality of the design?

what is good design1
What is good design?
  • “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” Steve Jobs
  • “ Design is a funny word. Some people think design means how it looks. But od course, if you dig deeper, its really how it works.” Steve Jobs.
  • “Design is a plan for arranging elements in such a way as best to accomplish a particular purpose.” Charles Eames
  • “ All architecture is shelter, all great architecture is the design of space that contains, cuddles, exalts, or stimulates the person in that space.” Philip Johnson
  • Find a quote about good design that resonates with you.
  • Find one technological product that illustrates the quote.
  • Justify to the group on the quality of design of your chosen image
what do students think is good design
What do students think is good design?

What criteria did they use?


The design of the Mac wasn't what it looked like, although that was part of it. Primarily, it was how it worked. To design something really well, you have to get it. You have to really grok what it's all about. It takes a passionate commitment to really thoroughly understand something, chew it up, not just quickly swallow it.Steve Jobs

don norman the three ways that good design makes you happy
Don Norman: The three ways that good design makes you happy

In this talk from 2003, design critic Don Norman turns his incisive eye toward beauty, fun, pleasure and emotion, as he looks at design that makes people happy. He names the three emotional cues that a well-designed product must hit to succeed.


form v function
Form v Function
  • Different people will have different views on what good design means to them.
  • The old argument form v function is often redundant in the 21st century criteria think – sustainability,
  • Cultures, personal preferences interest all play apart
asking questions
Asking questions
  • What is the design philosophy behind the technological object?
  • Sustainability Does this make it a good design/
  • Accessibility – does this make it a good design
  • Functionality
  • Quality of manufacture
  • Emotional resonance
  • Endurance
  • etc
emotional resonance
Emotional resonance
  • What product reaches your, “I want one of these”
industrial design award 2010
Industrial design Award 2010
  • This year, not one, but three winners were named Best in Show by the 2010 IDEA awards jury. "We have three winners: a technology-based digital product, an ecological responsible consumer product and a socially responsible solution to a basic human need.  No result could have more accurately reflected where industrial design finds itself today.
web design criteria
Web design criteria
  • Websites
  • The Academy evaluates Web sites based on six criteria: content, structure and navigation, visual design, functionality, interactivity, and overall experience.
  • Lots of tech outcomes
  • Rate 1 to 10 for good design
  • Discuss criteria used to judge good design
  • Assess again or use different tech outcomes
  • Criteria
  • Match up 10 design characteristics to different images of products
design that is
design that is …….
  • Functional
  • beautiful
  • enduring
  • well made

—are offset by values like

  • affordability
  • accessibility
  • ergonomic strength
  • social benefit
  • necessity
  • emotional resonance

The current issue of Metropolis makes a case for ten criteria for evaluating design arguments today, in the troubled economic, ecological, and political climate of the early 21st century. Arguably, these criteria provide an ethical framework for evaluating design so that the long-established yardsticks—design that is functional, beautiful, enduring, well made—are offset by values like affordability, accessibility, ergonomic strength, social benefit and necessity, and emotional resonance. No argument could meet all these criteria, but it might satisfy a few. More to the point, a loose framework gets us beyond the problem of labeling design as good or bad, or seeing problems as solvable. There are no solutions to design problems. There are only responses in the form of arguments.

  • http://www.metropolismag.com/story/20090318/a-good-argument
  • Dieter Rams Ten principles of good design
  • http://www.vitsoe.com/en/gb/about/dieterrams/gooddesign/
personal design exhibition
Personal design exhibition
  • What would you put in it?
  • Consider the different aspects of good design
  • Justify decisions
ask a new question about an old design classic
Ask a new question about an old design classic

Is it still a good design in the new climate of…/Think of the use of steel/leather etc

criteria other designers use
Criteria other designers use


http www youtube com watch feature player embedded v frwatw zeqi

Architectural draftsman-turned famous rapper, Ice Cube, takes a tour of the LA he loves and visits the house of design visionaries, Charles and Ray Eames. This clip’s worth a watch.

assessment as 91617
Assessment AS91617

“Undertake a critique of a technological outcome’s design.” External 4 credits

key words from standard
Key words from standard
  • critiquing (a detailed analysis/evaluation and assessment of the quality of design of a technological outcome)
  • technological outcome (fully realised products and systems, created by people for an identified purpose through Technological Practice)
  • design (the look and functioning of a technological outcome, building, garment, or product)
  • aesthetic quality ( the nature of , beauty and taste it can be both objective and subjective – the balance between elements like colour, line, shape and how they interact with one another to create a pleasing “whole”. Different cultures, eras have different definitions of aesthetic qualities hence this can be very subjective.)

Explain, (Means to give a reason or reasons – an explanation answers the question "why?" or "how does that work?" If the text includes "because" or "so that", it will be to explain something)

  • Discuss (to discourse about in order to reach conclusions or to convince, discuss implies a sifting of possibilities especially by presenting considerations pro’s and con’s, to examine something in detail so as to reach a decision. This usually means that more than one perspective is put forward and actively considered. So as part of discussions we may get "compare and contrast")
  • Evaluate (to examine and judge carefully; appraise to judge or assess the worth of; appraise
  • Justify (for example, to explain in your report the reason why this is a good design using contemporary criteria)
questions to ask students
Questions to ask students
  • Take the criteria in explanatory note 2 and rephrase them into questions


  • What is good design as we see it today? Why has the criteria used to judge good design changed over time?
  • Why is it that different individuals, groups or collectives may have different perspectives on what is good design?
  • How does the design of a technological outcome meet a set of criteria to make it good design?