Storage case: identification

Storage case: identification

DesignCycle2014Excited?!  I finally get to give you part of the Inquiring quadrant.  I'm tickled pink, mate!

This time, you'll be deciding what sort of storage case you'd like to create.  Think about the possibilities!  Gifts, organizers, sorters, protectors, display...there are storage cases all over in our lives.  What do you see around you that needs a storage case?  What sort?  Why?


DesignCycle2014Remember the design cycle?  You're dropping into the Inquiry and Analyzing quadrant this time, for the first time!

You know you're going to build using plastic.  One reason is to gain experience with digital design (2.5d), working with plastic, and working with the Laser Cutter.  You're going to build a storage case.  But beyond that, your Design Brief is going to be of your own design.

Step 1 is to define the problem you'd like to solve.  What problem (involving a box) can you identify that you would like to solve?  For whom?  Start writing down the details.

Step 2 is to do some research.

  1. This might involve talking with your target audience.  Sometimes, this is the folks who will buy your product.  For example, parents buy Legos; kids use them.  Parents are the target audience; kids are the end users.  But usually the target audience and the end users are the same people.
  2. This will also involve looking at how else this problem has already been solved.  What other boxes are on the market that address this problem?  You do this for a couple reasons:
    1. You can collect great ideas from your competitors.  It's not OK to simply use their plan exactly, but taking their good ideas and using them as inspiration your own plan is perfectly OK.
    2. You can see whether there is a real need for your product.  This allows you to determine whether you should make this as a one-off craft product (for yourself, as a gift, etc), or whether you should consider taking this product to the mass market.  Could you make money selling it?

Step 3 is to write up your Design Brief, including the specifications.

When you've got your brief created, you're read to move on.

(If you don't have any ideas about what you'd like to build, Number One has some ideas he can share.)

Time to review your analysis.  Read back through your Design Brief.  You're looking at four specific things:

  1. Have you defined a problem in the top section?  Not a product idea, not a gizmo or gadget to be made, but a problem to be solved.
  2. Is your target audience described?
  3. Are competing products shown and described in various ways?
  4. Are your specifications both specific and clear?

Better yet, once you've review your analysis, trade Design Briefs (electronically) with a buddy and give each other's briefs an analysis review.  Provide honest, helpful feedback to help them improve their Brief (and expect the same from them).

When you're sure you're ready, link your brief here.

Not bad, Visitor!  Now, on to producing in 2.5 dimensions (I'll explain that soon).  For that, let's hop over to the next job: ideation.

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