Designing for Emergence and Innovation: Redesigning Design

Greg Van Alstyne
Director of Research, Beal Institute for Strategic Creativity
Associate Professor, Ontario College of Art and Design
Robert K. Logan
Chief Scientist, Beal Institute for Strategic Creativity
Emeritus Professor, Department of Physics, University of Toronto

This paper reveals the surprising and counterintuitive truth that design is not always at the forefront of innovation; it is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for the success of products and services. The authors argue that design must harness emergence, for it is only through this bottom-up and massively iterative, unfolding process that new and improved products and services are successfully refined, introduced and diffused into the marketplace.

Passion Project Outline: Nature Happens

The thesis of this project begins with what it means to be a human living amongst other humans in the natural world and what it will take to continue doing so.

Thackara on urban sprawl: "it just happens—or so it appears"

While we were participating with Alex Manu in building a thinkmap on car-driven cities, I thought about this great quotation from John Thakara's In the Bubble (Thackara, 2005, 5 or here http://www.thackara.com/inthebubble/toc.html):

"We’re being swept into unknown and dangerous waters by accelerating economic growth.... Our natural, human, and industrial systems, which evolve slowly, are struggling to adapt. Laws and institutions that we might expect to regulate these flows have not been able to keep up.

"A good example is what is inaccurately described as mindless sprawl in our physical environment.

Creative Intelligent Systems Symposium, March 26-28, 2008

More at http://axon.cs.byu.edu/CreativeAI/

Creative Intelligent Systems
AAAI Spring Symposium Series
March 26-28, 2008
Stanford University

DIGIFEST '08 charrette, July 26, 2-6pm, Science Centre

As discussed in a recent show+tell, in conjunction with DX, Harbourfront and the Ontario Science Centre, I'd like to invite and encourage all interested parties from the Beal Institute to participate in a charrette toward the themes and content of Digifest 08, entitled Water's Edge. Details are included in the attached invitation.

Charrette title: Adapting to Water Disasters
Working premise: “How can new media be used to connect humans back with the natural environment so we can better anticipate and respond to these disasters?”

Designing Systems with Emergent Behavior at BayCHI

Thanks to Kelly for showing me this: a recent Bay Area ACM SigCHI panel on "Designing Systems with Emergent Behavior" featured Tim Brown (IDEO), Peter Merholz (Adaptive Path), Larry Cornett (Yahoo), and Joy Mountford (Yahoo), and was moderated by Rashmi Sinha.

Peter Merholtz blogged his thoughts here: www.peterme.com/archives/000793.html

Core77 offers a rundown of the event here: http://www.core77.com/blog/events/design_for_emergent_systems_4821.asp

And the organization's event page is here: http://www.baychi.org/calendar/20061010/

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