During the formative stage of the design cycle, teams engage in a variety of tasks to arrive at a design, including selecting among design alternatives. A key notion in design alternative selection is that of “preference” in which a designer assigns priorities to a set of design choices. This paper presents a preliminary approach for extracting a projection of aggregated design team preferences from design team discussion. This approach further takes into consideration how the design preferences of a team can evolve over time as the team changes its priorities based on new design information. Two initial models are given for representing the most probable and preferred design alternative from the transcriptions of design team discussion, and for predicting how preferences might change from one time interval to the next. These models are applied to an illustrative, real-world case example.

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