This paper describes the development and evaluation of mixed reality tools for the early stages of design and engineering processing. Externalization of ideal and real scenes, scripts, or frames are threads that stir the imaginative exploration of the mind to ideate, formulate, and represent ideas, fuzzy thoughts, notions, and/or dreams. The body in the mind, embodied imagination is more important than knowledge. Current computational tools and CAD systems are not equipped or fully adapted in the ability to intuitively convey creative thoughts, closely enact or connect with users in an effective, affective, or empathic way. Man-machine interactions are often tethered, encumbered by e.g. stupefying modalities, hidden functionalities, constraint interface designs and preprogrammed interaction routes. Design games, mixed reality, ‘new’ media, and playful tools have been suggested as ways to support and enhance individual and collaborative ideation and concept design by improving communication, performance, and generation. Gamification seems to be successful especially in framing and/or blending common ground for collaborative design and co-creation processes. Playing games with cross-disciplinary design teams and future users in conjunction with tools to create stories, narratives, role-play and visual representations can be used as abstract ideation and design material in an open-ended design process. In this paper we discuss mixed reality tools based on a holistic user-centered approach within playful stochastic environments. We present preliminary findings and studies from experimentation with robust tools, prototypes, and interfaces based on our empirical research and work in progress.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.