Locus of Design

Creating the discipline of gravity design

LargeLoDIcon

This is an interactive exercise for understanding design as an intersection of domains representing social factors, functional capabilities and experiences. It was developed by former design professor Greg Daigle in 2006 and first appeared in Core77. It has also appeared in the ebook “Gravity 2.0.”

There are several design frameworks for describing the relationships between people and the products they use. “User-centered design” (UCD), “activity-centered design” and “experience design’ are leading models. This model was developed in 2006 and employs three overlapping domains, each with concentric rings of influence to establish the “locus of design.” In combination, all three domains address the social-functional-experiential basis for design decisions.

The Social Domain includes the user, the local cohorts (immediate family, co- workers, friends, neighbors with whom they interact) and wider social groups including extended family, long distance collaborators and society in general.

The Functional Domain includes how products “function.” This ranges from simple mechanisms or electronics, to systems of functions working together within the same product or used in conjunction with nearby products, to local and wide area networks of products connected non-physically or through the cloud.

The Experiential Domain is both temporal and perceptual and includes the “in-the-moment” experiences, but also those over time (often shared with others) and experiences which transform long-term behaviors for individuals, groups or society.

LoD_Screenshot1-10inches

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the first screen users have the option to explore the different concentric circles of each domain to see what they represent.

LoD_Screenshot2-10inches

 

 

 

 

 

 

In subsequent screens the user can select settings from each of the domains and see how the concentric domains move into place to represent the overlaps.  Users can also drag the concentric domains until they overlap and view the outcomes… or take an interactive quiz to show if you understand the concept fully.

LoD_Screenshot3-10inches

 

 

 

 

 

 

The interactive version of the app for desktops was build with ZebraZapps.  See it below… (may take a full minute to load).

Be sure to click on the “Z” in the corner to see your viewing options to zoom to full screen.

The app is also available on Google Play for android devices: Locus of Design.

Explore how any design situation can be described as an overlapping set of three domains that determine the “locus” of design.

About the Author

gdaigleGregory Daigle is a former professor of design who has accrued national and international awards for interactive media and STEM learning. He has held management and creative leadership positions with advertising, e-learning, industrial design and interactive media firms. He heads an awarded non-profit for place-based learning and has written numerous articles on design and technology.View all posts by gdaigle

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

    No Twitter Messages.
Skip to toolbar