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An Examination of Prototyping and Design Outcome

[+] Author Affiliations
Maria C. Yang

University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA

Paper No. DETC2004-57552, pp. 497-502; 6 pages
  • ASME 2004 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 3a: 16th International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology
  • Salt Lake City, Utah, USA, September 28–October 2, 2004
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4696-2 | eISBN: 0-7918-3742-4
  • Copyright © 2004 by ASME


The building of prototypes is an important part of the product design and development process. This paper examines factors in prototyping, including part count and time spent on design and fabrication activity, and their correlations with design outcome. The research questions asked: Do simpler prototypes mean a more successful design? Does more prototyping lead to better designs? Does the amount of time spent on a project, both overall and on different activities over a project cycle, relate to design success? One of the main findings of this study is that prototypes with fewer parts correlate with better design outcome, as do prototypes that have fewer parts added to them over the course of development. This paper also finds that committing more time to a project is not necessarily associated with a successful design outcome.

Copyright © 2004 by ASME
Topics: Design , Performance



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