• [Moo! Mackie's Makes It]

    Professor James Fleck visited the IDEAs lab on June 4th, 2004 from the Management School and Economics at the University of Edinburgh, to present a talk on “Processes of Innovation and Design for Usability”.

    This was a very interesting seminar, if not immediately relevant to my own research. Not only was some of the content fascinating, but the method of presentation was also novel. Professor Flack uses mindmapping software to prepare his presentation and then uses the mindmap as a navigation tool during the presentation. By clicking on a mindmap element, a separate page would be opened where he could explore that concept in detail or perhaps an image clip launched.

    Here, belatedly, are a copy of the abstract and my notes from the seminar.


    In this seminar I will outline a range of theories of innovation within the broader context of technological development, to draw lessons about how the design process may be facilitated or constrained, especially with regard to usability. The discussion will be grounded with reflections about several empirical cases. These will include the design of a particular “smart Product” (Persona–the electronic contraceptive) and the development of a “Personal Learning Appliance” for a new e-learning initiative at Edinburgh (The Global Innovation MBA–GIMBA).

    Conclusions will address the need for practical trialling; the need for mapping the space of behavioural interactions (behavioural ergonomics?) and the need to overcome “default satisficing behaviour” among prospective users.

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