Why mind mapping is the best for design thinking

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Design

The aim of this blog is to explore the concept of design led thinking and to confirm that mind mapping is the ideal if not only tool to be used for design led thinking. So what is design led thinking?  To describe design thinking I tried to discuss a definition and processes of design led thinking.  Tim Brown from IDEO (a respected though leader on the topic) define design thing as: “A system that uses the designer’s sensibility and methods to match people’s needs with what is technologically feasible and what a viable business can convert into consumer value and market opportunity.”. The process involves mainly 3 activities.  It starts with a discovery phase to understand the problem/issue which can be done through research to understanding (empathise) and defining of needs.  This phase is normally followed by the creation of ideas by looking for patterns and insights obtained during the discovery phase.  Ideas must/ can be expanded and/or simplified through a process of discussions etc. The ideas must become visible. A prototype or a tangible picture of the developed idea must be produced.  This picture must be visualised and described as a product or object to be reached.  After testing the vision can be put into effect. Mind mapping is the ideal method to get the vision to put into effect.  For me mind mapping is visual thinking to structure information through expansion and simplification of ideas/ topics using linkages/branches utilising various tools. Let’s illustrate this by using mind mapping at all the phase of design led thinking.  I will use Mindmanager 16 from Mindjet (https://www.mindjet.com) to illustrate. Discovery The mind map below is a visual representation of information regarding design led thinking structured in linkages and branches.  This is an expansion of information but also simplified in a structured manner.  Shown here is the main topic with three branches namely the definition of design led thinking, the rules and a summary of a possible process of design led thinking. Capturing Needs The example map below shows the breakdown of possible needs with a function to do brainstorming where any ideas about needs can be noted. A variety of tools in Mindmanager can be used to help with brainstorming.  In this case Idea Cards are being used.  The answers from these cards can be incorporated in the mind map. Creation of ideas by looking for patterns and insights After the brainstorming session, Mindmanager can be used to create order and structure to the information (I discuss the method in From chaos to simplicity – Mind Mapping).  This ordering process will create specific ideas through identification of patters and other insights. Prototype or a tangible picture A simple mind map that shows only the final ideas will provide a clear picture of the outcome of the design session and what needs to be done. Mind maps can be used for almost anything where the mind is concerned. From teaching, learning, report writing, project management, blogging and design thinking

GeoDesign and Disaster Risk Assessment

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Design, Disaster, GIS

What is GeoDesign and what is the relationship with Disaster Risk Assessment (or any other GISc related project)? This short narrative will discuss this. GeoDesign In short: GeoDesign can be broken into two syllables, Geo and Design. Geo represents the geographic space or space that is referenced to the surface of the earth (geo-referenced). Design is the thought process comprising the creation of something and therefore GeoDesign is a thought process comprising the creation of entities in space. To implement GeoDesign practically a process needs to be followed. This process is very similar to a scientific research project and is shown in the figure below.     The process starts, as usual, with a problem for which a solution must be fined. To do this the problem must first be described after it can be analysed. To visualise the problem is part of the analysing the problem. This is where “geo” comes in by visualising the problem using GISc techniques and software. Through various processes and techniques ( research and/designed led innovation or brainstormings) solution can be identified and again GIS can be used to visualise the solution. The solution/ prototype must be tested and if successful, implemented in the real world. Disaster Risk Assessment Disaster risk assessment follows the same process. A next blog will describe the practical implementation of GeoDesign and disaster risk assessment through conducting a GISc project during which a specific project plan will be discussed.  The problem can be to identify possible water pollution areas. Through study and research, the problem is described and analysed. GISc techniques can be used to visualise the possible areas and through this visualisation possible water pollution areas can be confirmed and presented in map format. Through ground truthing, the assessment can be tested and incorporated into a disaster risk profile and disaster risk reduction strategy and programs.

Smart Cities

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Design, GIS

Smart Cities A smart city is a term that represents the merger of elements that are deemed “smart”.  These include sustainable development, green development, smart technology, shared economy, The merger leads to smart transport, smart garbage removal, smart water management, integration of green energy into the energy grid socio and economy sound developed.  This integration is managed, supported by an ICT network. Smart elements in a city are producing a large amount of data and if these datasets are integrated and analysed smartly the looped can be closed back to the smart elements.  Data produced by road sensors can be used to direct traffic or be used to inform autonomous cars of road conditions or inform the maintenance plan directly. Examples Smart Parking Censors showing open parking space Waste to energy Smart water meters and management Energy efficient and green buildings Citizens engagement The integration of above-mentioned examples can constitute a smart city. Implementation To start or to be successful, smart cities (officials) need to establish an implementation plan with appropriate goals.  Various white papers and case studies provide guidelines for the implementation of smart cities. Very important is that leadership must also change their and others’ mind set to make smart cities successful.  In most cases, the status quo must change in order for a city to become smart. Smart Campus An offspring or starting point for a Smart City can be a Smart Campus.  In many cases, a successful smart city has a smart campus as an important and integral partner.  A smart campus (University) is the incubator of “smart” technologies to be used in a smart city.  This enables the University also to be “smart” in its use of technology and data/information.

Why mind mapping is the best for design thinking

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Design

The aim of this blog is to explore the concept of design led thinking and to confirm that mind mapping is the ideal if not only tool to be used for design led thinking. So what is design led thinking?  To describe design thinking I tried to discuss a definition and processes of design led thinking.  Tim Brown from IDEO (a respected though leader on the topic) define design thing as: “A system that uses the designer’s sensibility and methods to match people’s needs with what is technologically feasible and what a viable business can convert into consumer value and market opportunity.”. The process involves mainly 3 activities.  It starts with a discovery phase to understand the problem/issue which can be done through research to understanding (empathise) and defining of needs.  This phase is normally followed by the creation of ideas by looking for patterns and insights obtained during the discovery phase.  Ideas must/ can be expanded and/or simplified through a process of discussions etc. The ideas must become visible. A prototype or a tangible picture of the developed idea must be produced.  This picture must be visualised and described as a product or object to be reached.  After testing the vision can be put into effect. Mind mapping is the ideal method to get the vision to put into effect.  For me mind mapping is visual thinking to structure information through expansion and simplification of ideas/ topics using linkages/branches utilising various tools. Let’s illustrate this by using mind mapping at all the phase of design led thinking.  I will use Mindmanager from Mindjet (https://www.mindjet.com) to illustrate. The mind map below is a visual representation of information regarding design led thinking structured in linkages and branches.  This is an expansion of information but also simplified in a structured manner.  Shown here is the main topic with three branches namely the definition of design led thinking, the rules and a summary of a possible process of design led thinking. Capturing of needs The example map below shows the breakdown of possible needs with a function to do brainstorming where any ideas about needs can be noted.  A variety of tools in Mindmanager can be used to help with brainstorming.  In this case Idea Cards are being used.  The answers from these cards can be incorporated in the mind map. Creation of ideas by looking for patterns and insights After the brainstorming session, Mindmanager can be used to create order and structure to the information (I discuss the method in From chaos to simplicity – Mind Mapping).  This ordering process will create specific ideas through identification of patters and other insights. Prototype or a tangible picture A simple mind map that shows only the final ideas will provide a clear picture of the outcome of the design session and what needs to be done. Mind maps can be used for almost anything where the mind is concerned. From teaching, learning, report writing, project management, blogging and design thinking.