Thursday, December 4, 2008

Final Post

1. I have always felt like design was a huge contributing factor to my life before I took design intelligence, but now I feel like I am better able to describe and understand the design that I experience on a daily basis. It will continue to affect how I live and view the world around me.
2. I think that it is important for first year students at K to understand just how much of an adjustment there is to college life. I feel like a lot of emphasis is put on the academic transition, but not as much on the change in living and lifestyle. I would tell freshmen to expect a huge change and to not feel isolated when they are afraid and feel alone; everyone feels this way- even if it isn't talked about.
3. I would tell students enrolled in Design Intelligence to prepare for a lot of analysis and discussion, and to get used to speaking in front of people and doing presentations.

Friday, November 21, 2008

K Paper

1. My tentative thesis is: Kalamazoo College is an excellent learning institution that provides it's students with a quality environment and plentiful resources. The mail center at K is slow, unorganized, inefficient, and does not promote a good image for K College. To better represent K the mail center should be changed to remedy the problems.
2. I plan to address constraints such as space, staff, and time in my analysis, and trigger points like mailboxes, service, and speed are most important.
3. Class readings to utilize:
Emotional Designs
Design of Spaces
The Third Place
The Experience Architect
Principles of Marketing
4. " A good experience architect sets the stage for positive encounters with your organization through products, services, digital interactions, spaces, or events."

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Campus Analysis

1. I chose to observe the Biggby cafe area of the library at Kalamazoo College. It's purpose is to serve coffee, drinks, and small treats, and to provide a coffee shop atmosphere within the library setting. I made my observations in the evening (around 7- 9 pm), on a weekday.
2. a) The appearance of the actual Biggby store was typical for any Biggby coffee shop, since its a Biggby franchise. The seating area (the part I actually observed) was large, with two couch areas, several armchairs, and lots of wooden table and chairs. The color scheme and lighting were warm, with warm yellow, orange, red, and purple colors dominating and yellow overhead lights and lamps.
b) see above, all of the couches and armchairs were taken, and a few chairs and tables were availible.
c) At the time I observed the area was busy, with people and groups coming in and out, and several people or couples/threesomes studying quietly at tables.
d) The floors were consistent with the rest of the library flooring, a multicolored dark slate slab flooring.
e) The sound level varied depending on how many people and what people were doing in the lounge area, from very quiet to slightly noisy. Even with music played from Biggby the area was never loud.
f) The materials used looked like average coffee shop furniture that you would find in any Biggby's location. Everything looked nice, but very manufactured and cut out.
3. The area projects a warm and cozy ambiance that is supposed to evoke a comfortable and pleasant feeling. Design elements like yellow lighting, soft seating, warm colors, and a recessed area inside the library help to convey the image. It is a nice area that people gather in and promotes a good image for K.
4. People interacted with each other in a very calm and comfotable way. Study groups seemed productive and serious, while group meetings looked fun and relaxed, and people in conversation seemed content and happy. Many had drinks from Biggby and interacted well with the seating options and space.
5. I found the concept of a coffee shop/ coffee lounge area inside a library an interesting idea and one that seemed to work very well. It was a design reminisant of most coffee shops (warm and cozy) that was a nice alternative to other campus locations and a good way to feel off campus while still being on campus.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Product, Services, and Branding Strategies

1. Design and marketing are two aspects of a products life that are essential to each other. A products design promotes an image and sends a message to the targeted consumer based on the image. This is the essence of marketing. So a product is marketed based on the chosen design. I think the most important element is branding. It is a reflexive element that is highly influential on the average American.
2. Branding and marketing sell a product by promoting how it will change your life in a positive way, therefore creating a good experience. It is all about perceived changes from buying a product and how owning a certain product will improve a persons experience.
3. K College's brand position is all about the quality liberal arts education and the strong community aspect of school. Design of the campus, the classroom experience, the study abroad program, and the K plan are all design aspects that reinforce the idea that one will get a premier education at Kalamazoo.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

"The Experience Architect"

1. I think the most important point about this reading is the whole idea of the experience architect- this was a totally new concept for me. The experience architect is someone who designs and crafts an exciting experience for a customer. They push the limits of ordinary and expand ideas and norms to create an organized yet remarkable customer experience.
2. Both the design of consumer products and the design of experiences are focused on financial success for the business involved. They are both about innovation and pushing the boundaries of design, but experience design is formed around the customer's journey and actual interaction and experience with a product or service, instead of product design that is based solely on object interaction.
3. I would plan to have a end of quarter seminar scavenger hunt here at K. Each seminar would work as a team to follow clues around K to try to reach the end, where the winning team would win a prize.

Monday, November 10, 2008

1. Ray Oldenburg describes a third place as a place separate from home and work where people can meet and congregate informally and comfortably to interact with one another and the community.
2. Design elements like tone, ambiance, atmosphere, spaciousness, seating options, and inclusiveness are all important when designing a third space.
3. Biggby coffee in the library commons had potential to be a successful third space here at K. It is a nice, informal place to study, read, or have a conversation with coffee- or not. It could be improved by reorganizing the seating so that space is more intimate and comfortable.

Wikipedia article-

...It took me a while to figure out how to upload my article!

Friday, November 7, 2008

"City"- William Whyte

1. I think the authors main points were that supply creates demand, a good new space builds its constituency, the best-used plazas are sociable places, the best-used places also tend to have a higher than average proportion of women, the rhythms of successful plazas are very alike, location, shape, and sittable space are important, and lastly seating is extremely important.
2. Designing urban spaces and consumer products is a very different process. Designing urban spaces is about creating an area for large numbers of people to utilize, and a consumer product is designed for one person. Both are designed to attract people in some way.
3. 1) Location
2) Space
3) Use of space
4) Constituency
5) Seating and ambiance