Delft Design Guide

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Delft Design Guide

The design methods presented in this collection of articles can be very useful for you as a designer, both during your time as a student and as a practitioner. Our aim is that you will use it as a source and reference during and after your design education to gradually build a repertoire of different ways of approaching the design of products. Continue reading the introduction...

The Delft Design Guide (DDG) originated as the Bachelor Design Guide, a collection of materials from the design curriculum at the Delft University of Technology. A digital version of the revised Delft Design Guide (including video clips) has been available at TU Delft OpenCourseWare since 2010. It is available as hard-copy from Uniportaal, in full-colour or as greyscale.

As one of the most popular collections on TU Delft OpenCourseWare, the DDG has already been used by several thousands of people. Our efforts in adapting the DDG to WikID are aimed at making it accessible for a larger audience, and for more purposes. However, since its history precedes this adaptation, it called for two exceptions to general WikID policy.

  • The DDG is licensed under a Creative Commons license similar to the default, but with an additional Non-Commercial condition (BY-NC-SA).
  • The original editors - see the colophon - of the Delft Design Guide have undertaken many efforts to gather the experiences of many design students, professionals, researchers, and tutors. They have maintained final editorial rights, which means that users cannot edit these pages. Instead, we invite you to leave your comments on the discussion pages (available for each article). If needed, the editors will be consulted on whether to incorporate your suggestion.

Part 1 - Approaches to product design in Delft

In part one of the Delft Design Guide, descriptions of the processes of product design and innovation that are used in Delft are presented. These models mostly originated within the faculty, but they draw on wider (international) research on product design and new product development.

  1. Product design in Delft
  2. The Product innovation process
  3. The Basic design cycle
  4. Engineering models of product design
  5. The Fish trap model
  6. Vision in product design (ViP)
  7. Emerging design methods: ZEN design method and Multi-sensory design

Part 2 - Design methods

This section will present a variety of design methods which can be used in the product design process. The design methods present­ed here are categorized according to the activity for which they can be used.

  1. Creating a design goal
    1. Strategy wheel
    2. Trend analysis
    3. Cradle to cradle (DDG)
    4. EcoDesign checklist
    5. EcoDesign strategy wheel
    6. Collage techniques
    7. Process tree
    8. WWWWH
    9. Problem definition
    10. Checklist for generating requirements
    11. Design specification (criteria)
    12. Design vision
  2. Creating product ideas and concepts
    1. Creativity techniques
    2. How to's
    3. Mind map
    4. The brainstorm method
    5. Synectics
    6. Function analysis
    7. Morphological charts
    8. Role-playing techniques
    9. Storyboard
    10. Written scenario
    11. Checklist for concept generation
    12. Design drawing
    13. Threedimensional models
    14. Biomimicry
    15. Contextmapping
  3. Decision and selection
    1. C-Box
    2. Itemised response and PMI
    3. vALUe
    4. Harris profile
    5. Datum method
    6. Weighted objectives method
  4. Evaluation of product features
    1. Product simulation and testing
    2. Product concept evaluation
    3. Product usability evaluation

Part 3 - Competences in Design

In this part of the Delft Design Guide we present some methods, tips, deliberations and so on, on more generic topics that are of interest while learning and practising design. The topics are not specifically attributed to one particular phase in the design process, but useful and applicable in a more general sense. As for the other parts of this Design Guide, the reader should be aware that the following resources do not cover all the knowledge of these topics but serves as a starting point for further study.

  1. Planning & Design
  2. Communication & Design
  3. Reflection & Design
  4. Traps, Tricks and Strategies & Concept Development
  5. Teamwork & Design
  6. Finding Information & Design


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