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Explicit Communication of Geometric Design Intent in CAD: Evaluating Annotated Models in the Context of Reusability

[+] Author Affiliations
Jorge Camba, Jeffrey Otey

Texas A&M University, College Station, TX

Manuel Contero

Politècnica de València, València, Spain

Pedro Company

Universitat Jaume I, Castelló, Spain

Paper No. DETC2014-34527, pp. V007T07A014; 9 pages
  • ASME 2014 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 7: 2nd Biennial International Conference on Dynamics for Design; 26th International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology
  • Buffalo, New York, USA, August 17–20, 2014
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division, Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4640-7
  • Copyright © 2014 by ASME


CAD model reusability is largely determined by a proper communication of design intent, which is usually expressed implicitly within the model. Recent studies have suggested the use of 3D annotations as a method to embed design information in the model’s geometry and make part of the design knowledge explicitly available. In this paper, we evaluate the effectiveness of this method and analyze its impact in model alteration tasks. Our goal is to determine whether annotated models provide significant benefits when performing activities that require a direct manipulation of the geometry. We present the results of a study that measured user performance in two scenarios. First, we tested whether annotations are helpful when inadequate modeling assumptions can be made by designers. Second, we evaluated annotations as tools to communicate design decisions to select the most appropriate solution to a challenge when multiple options are available. In both cases, results show statistically significant benefits of annotated models, suggesting the use of this technique as a valuable approach to improve design intent communication.

Copyright © 2014 by ASME



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