Students ask: how do you brainstorm?

23 Oct 2005 - 5:28pm
9 years ago
4 replies
1360 reads
Ryan Betts
2005

I’m part of a group of 4th year students trying to develop a capture
and access tool to help enhance the productivity of a team’s creative
process. For better or worse, we’ve decided to target Interaction
Designers for our initial development. So, we were hoping that some
of you might have the time to answer some questions about how you get
your brainstorming done:

1) How do you do your brainstorming individually? Ie. Scribbles
on paper, post-it notes stuck to walls.

2) How do you do your brainstorming as a group? Ie. F2F meetings,
email, phone, individually, or any combination.

3) Do you use a formal brainstorming process in those group
interactions? For example, do your meetings all follow the same
structure. Do you have any firm protocol?

4) What problems do you encounter when sharing your ideas in this
way?

5) What do you find works well about sharing your ideas in this way?

6) How do you organize the ideas that come out of this process?
For example, do you archive the ideas that were good but not useful
at that time?

Right now, we’re looking at developing a digital sketchpad tool that
records what you’ve drawn and gives you playback and organization
capacities. The idea is inspired by things like http://artpad.art.com
and the Pegasus drawing system, and are looking at Heather Richter’s
research into meeting capture and access at Georgia Tech.

Cheers.
-Ryan Betts

Comments

24 Oct 2005 - 2:10am
Peter Boersma
2003

Ryan Betts said:
> I’m part of a group of 4th year students trying to develop a capture
> and access tool to help enhance the productivity of a team’s creative
> process.

Please consider having a look at:
http://studiolab.io.tudelft.nl/forinspirationonly/

"Designers surround themselves with visual material, such as magazines,
advertisements and photographs. Traditionally these images were used in
collages and moodboards to define and communicate the direction of a design
project.

In practice we found that designers still collect and surround themselves
with phsyical visual material, yet that all the images used in collages came
directly from digital sources such as stock CD-roms and the Internet.

Collecting physical material is more of a constant stream of attention that
keeps the designers sensitive to the world around them. Furthermore
designers get new insights while structuring and adding material to the
collection (especially when structuring requires a force-fit).

This research has looked at how designers interact with visual material in
the early phases of design and what new tools can do to support this. These
questions were addressed by literature reviews and field studis, furthermore
several working prototypes have been built, which have been used to gain and
demonstrate the knowledge built up during this research.

In this research through design approach, the prototypes serve as ways to
build, expand and communicate knowledge. The final prototype from this
research called Cabinet is a tool that helps designers grow and organize
their collections of visual material. It has been built as a working
prototype and set out at three different design agencies for four-weeks in a
field experiment."

Peter
--
Peter Boersma | Consultant User Experience | www.UserIntelligence.com
Vlaardingenlaan 9 | 1059 GL | Amsterdam | The Netherlands
p:+31(0)204084296 | f:+31(0)204084298 | m:+31(0)615072747
mailto:peter at peterboersma.com | http://www.peterboersma.com/blog/

24 Oct 2005 - 4:01am
Ashraf Habash
2005

Hi,

I will write my answers between your lines.

1) How do you do your brainstorming individually? Ie. Scribbles
on paper, post-it notes stuck to walls.

Brainstorming can be done individually but its more efficient in group,
brainstorming also can be done using paper or post-it notes, but the point
here is to make the ideas visible for all the attendees; so it might be
useful to use a white board that everybody can see, so the whole group keep
storming.

2) How do you do your brainstorming as a group? Ie. F2F meetings,
email, phone, individually, or any combination.

The most efficient brainstorming was in group and when we were at the same
place. Communication was done personally.

3) Do you use a formal brainstorming process in those group
interactions? For example, do your meetings all follow the same
structure. Do you have any firm protocol?
We try to have very few rules and our main rule is not to interrupt others
while mentioning an idea (even silly ones) and try to keep in the range of
the problem, not to be busy with other things and to present the idea as
more brief as possible.

4) What problems do you encounter when sharing your ideas in this
way?
Some people might go off-topic, people tend to explain their ideas more and
others tend to discuss the ideas mentioned by other participant. In addition
some participants get tired quickly.
5) What do you find works well about sharing your ideas in this way?
Concentration, briefing and using an artifact that can support cooperation
of the group and make the whole list of ideas easily visible.
6) How do you organize the ideas that come out of this process?
For example, do you archive the ideas that were good but not useful
at that time?
Usually, the whole group gets the chance to go through all the list of ideas
and discuss them in general, they can recommend or revoke some ideas from
the list. Then some of the participants (usually stakeholders) take the
resulted list and make a thorough discussion on this list, this list is
archived for later use.

All the best,

Ashraf Habash

24 Oct 2005 - 5:38pm
Ryan Betts
2005

Thanks a bunch for the insight, everyone. The responses we got from
everyone are a big help.

Bernie Monette wrote:

> Interesting Breeze seems to have features that might facilitate a
> real time
> brainstorm over distance.

I was just wondering if you had a link to the Interesting Breeze
stuff. I'm not familiar with it and couldn't narrow down a google
search enough to find it.

Cheers.
-Ryan Betts

25 Oct 2005 - 2:38am
Kevin Cheng
2004

(plug)

I actually just detailed our comic creation process which relates to
brainstorming techniques here:
http://www.ok-cancel.com/archives/feature/2005/10/brainstorming-vs-ide
a-seeding-the-new-okcancel-process.html

(/plug)

Kevin Cheng (KC)
OK/Cancel: Interface Your Fears
kc at ok-cancel.com
www.ok-cancel.com

:: -----Original Message-----
:: From: discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
:: [mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com] On Behalf
:: Of Ryan Betts
:: Sent: Monday, October 24, 2005 3:38 PM
:: To: discuss at lists.interactiondesigners.com
:: Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] Students ask: how do you brainstorm?
::
:: [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
:: material.]
::
:: Thanks a bunch for the insight, everyone. The responses we got
:: from
:: everyone are a big help.
::
:: Bernie Monette wrote:
::
:: > Interesting Breeze seems to have features that might facilitate
:: a
:: > real time
:: > brainstorm over distance.
::
:: I was just wondering if you had a link to the Interesting Breeze
:: stuff. I'm not familiar with it and couldn't narrow down a google
:: search enough to find it.
::
:: Cheers.
:: -Ryan Betts
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