William, thats absolutely correct its total team work . No idea or product can be successfull unless you have worked like a team all the failed products are the example of bad teamwork or no team work. As it is said that you should not love your idea its really a very good line . One should be flexible enough to make changes in his or her project because the ultimate thing that someone wants is the result and in order to drive good result we should have the stamina to discuss ideas with others and have the courage to listen positive and negative points of it and revamp our project accordingly.
Scott, I agree, and your point is an important one. There are smaller projects that may not need much research at all at the get go. We always think in terms of what the project really needs, and scaling the efforts to meet the needs. beleive me, it is a lot harder to talk a customer into doing more research than it is to talk them into less!
Point taken Tom...I suppose it depends on the scale of the idea. Experience in Aerospace Liaison Engineering has shown that despite all the talent in the world there are still so many nonconformances that show up in a new airplane that an army of Liaison guys are hired to disposition fixes both in Design and in Manufacturing.
In contrast a novelty bicycle design has a vast history behind it, millions of bike examples out there and lends itself to creative sculpting which doesn't interfere with fit, form or function.
I reckon that a singular approach does not fit all circumstances and requires modification to suit.
William K; Well said. A group of qualified people who are interested in the success of the project, rather than self-aggrandizing or empire-building, are essential to the success of the team, and the project.
Scott, the thing I have seen with "the prototype is enough" thinking is an excessive use of time and resources. What people tend to forget is that some good design thinking has to happen in order for you to get a prototype in the first place. Those who buy into this philosophy tend to espouse the "fail early fail often" mantra. I believe more in "fail early, fail often, fail smart". This simply means that with some simple informed design thinking up front, you may only have to build three prototypes to get to the final design instead of seven.
I'm Designer AND Engineer, and I have often gone straight to prototype. It's the fastest and most fun route. But in retrospect, the projects that do allow peer review always have Value-Added. (Two heads are better than One).
There is much to be said for the value of following a well-defined process, as a program routes it way thru other disciplines (Marketing, Legal, Agency, etc.) These three depts., for example, have no clue of the design details and need a process to lean on.
It seems like the main difference of opinion here is whether or not there is time to do a thoughtful job of upfront research. A friend of mine has a grandfather who always said, "the hurrieder you go, the behinder you get". Another friend has always said, ''There is never enough time to do it right, but there is always enough time to do it over". I think there is a lot of wisdom in these sayings.
It doesn't need to take an immense amount of time to do up front research. If a company bails on it because they think it will take 3 months and 150k, there are other options. We have done short research projects for customers in just a week. The benefit is that the design team (engineers and designers) get to work with what I call "A Priori" knowledge... they can design in an informed way, knowing a bit better about what the design "needs" to be.
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