Futuring scenarios without the accompanying product or model misses the point. The idea behind futuring isn't merely to craft stories - there are enough astounding writers in the world, particularly those who write science fiction, who craft entire worlds out of words without needing to add futuring designers to the mix. It is the product that makes the futuring exercise real. It takes the otherwise fictional scenario and lends it a realness, a tangibility that has to be taken seriously. The product separates futuring from fiction. The reason that design is so well poised for the task of confronting people with visions of possible futures that scare and shock us into contemplation and eventually action is because design, whether it is graphic, product or anything in between, outputs real objects and things used in everyday contexts, and so, designers have the power of making anything look real.
A few things to note before I tell you what the latest and greatest sprint has been like for thesis. Those of you who come to the site itself to read my blog will have noticed that I redesigned my website! It feels less stark now, with shades of grey and a bit of what is known around the studio as "Souvik Blue" - my favorite shade of blue, found in a lot of my clothing and some of my drawing tools. Take a look around, kick the tires a bit and let me know what you think! For those of you on RSS or what have you, swing by and also let me know what you think!
The work for this week, as I mentioned last week, was to hold a co-design workshop with 3 to 6 people. When we were introduced to the prompt for these workshops, just two weeks ago [crazy, right?], it was in the context of futuring. For the uninitiated, futuring is a design methodology out of speculative design, a design practice whose medium is concepts and speculation, in the same way that wood, metal, plastic, and physical materials are the media of product design.
At Products of Design, a technique that we use time and again for ideation at the start of an ambitious project is the 100 sketch technique. Generate 100 sketches in order to put even the craziest ideas on paper; don't filter, don't edit, just sketch.