Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Design Intelligence Last Questions

1. I see design contributing to my life a whole lot. I will now look at products a whole different way. I will be able to tell why a certain product is designed a certain way or at least have some idea why it was designed that way. I feel that I might not fall into some of those design traps that are used today because I have a good idea what some of them are. I will analyze products and their design more instead of just looking at the product.

2. Advice would be to go out there and have fun. Don't always worry about class, there has to be that free time you have for yourself and others. I would also advise people to not procrastinate because it can really hurt later on when you are doing a big paper or just studying for a test. Be open to discussions and try and state your opinion as much as you can.

3. For students enrolled in this seminar I would just tell them to be very open in discussions and even if you are shy just try and put yourself out there. Everybody has good ideas you just have to be able to express them to everybody. Read the material even though it may be long it is very interesting stuff and will help you in the long run.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The Brief Wadsworth Handbook Questions

1. Improvement for Angell Field is very important for Kalamazoo College and the impression it leaves on opposing teams and fans.

2. The constraints I plan on addressing in my analysis are the cost and different ways to maybe pay for the changes needed to the field. The size constraint is also another constraint I plan on addressing in my analysis. The trigger points that are most important are the field, and the stands.

3. The five of our class readings that i could apply to my topic have to do with the latest readings we have done in the past month. The Principles of Marketing, The Experience Architect, The Third Place, The Design of Everyday Things and City. These all have some things that I could apply to my topic.
The Principles of Marketing: Talking about the brand of Kalamazoo College and how the football field should be a part of this special brand.
The Experience Architect: When opposing teams and their fans come to games at Angell Field they should be able to remember Kalamazoo College for having a nice looking field and nice facilities. It should be a great day for those people.
The Third Place: I feel if the football field was in better shape it could become a third place for students on game day.
City: This reading talked a lot about seating and one of my key points is improving the seating at the football field.

4. "If you set out to make everything better about your product or service, you may end up with a gold-plated offering that few customers can afford, or with unfocused features few will fully appreciate. So start by asking what's truly important to your customer. The answer may be something small, irrational, elusive, and completely surprising. But finding that answer is often crucial to your success. It's often just one or two essential elements. We call them trigger points."
This is from "The Experience Architect." This can help support my thesis because I will need to talk about the trigger points that will needed to be improved. The trigger points will be very important throughout the entire paper.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Campus Analysis

1. I observed the first floor of Kalamazoo College’s Library. The purpose of the library is help students to get away from all the noise and have some place to study. The other purpose is for students to have books and other sources to find information regarding something. I observed on Sunday night around 9:30.

2. a.) The appearance of the first floor is very big and inviting. The front doors are glass and very tall and nice looking. The tables and computers looked very well spaced out. The staircase was also something that pops out at you when you see it. It seems that a lot of things that you need are on the first floor.
b.) There are plenty of seats around. There are numerous tables that can sit at least four people and maybe even more if you wanted. All computers have a seat assigned to them. Also on the first floor there are couches next to Bigby’s coffee. Right in the middle are little comfy seats. There are all different kinds of chairs that include wooden chairs, computer chairs that can be different, and couches all around on the first floor.
c.) At this time I noticed that there were a lot of people. I think that the reason why there were a lot of people because it was on a Sunday night and most people are trying to finish up their homework and just get away from noise. It is very relaxing to go into a place where there is hardly any noise so you can get your work done.
d.) The floor is mostly carpet while some parts are tiled squares. The carpet is multicolored squares all around. The tile is blue with some burgundy colors mixed in all the way through. The tiles are all different kinds of shapes.
e.) Overall it was very quiet. There was some people talking, but they were respectful of the fact that it was a library and kept it to a whisper. I also heard the typing of many computers.
f.) The materials used to construct this place include wood, stone, tile, glass and carpet.

3. The image that this area projects is an inviting place to get away from noise and a place to concentrate. Tables are spaced out from each other in a pretty good distance. There is no clutter at all and you feel very comfortable sitting at one of the tables. The computers are also separated so you have your own space. This just shows how the library wants you to have your own comfortable space to study. The entrance itself is glass doors that are very tall and see through so you can see what you are walking into. I think that this is the image that the school wants to project. Kalamazoo College is known for academics and I believe that they want the library to be a vital part of a student’s learning experience.

4. I think that people interacted with each other and their surroundings very well. When people were sitting next to each other and talking they were very courteous of others and kept the talking to a whisper. There was no yelling or loud talking even with a group of people showing respect to everyone around them.

5. I found the front entrance very interesting about this place. I just thought that the entrance was like no other entrance I had ever seen. It just seemed very inviting with the glass doors. You could see what you were about to walk into which was a very nice looking library. I also that the fact that the the floor was separated with carpet and tile. The staircase that you see leading up to the upper floors is also a very original design. I had not seen many staircases like it. It gave off a very beautiful look and actually wanted you to take the stairs feeling.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Principles of Marketing Questions

1. Design affects marketing in a very big way. The design of products has a big influence on how companies market that same product. Packaging, labeling, and brands are some of the way design affects marketing. The packaging involves designing and producing the container or wrapper for a product. Packaging traditionally was just used to store and protect the product but now the design of the package is used as a marketing tool. Companies are trying to find the best ways to package products to attract the customer, to describe the product and to make the sale. Labeling identifies the product or brand. It may also include different sort of things describing the product. It is also a way to promote the product, like having a creative label or a label that sticks out that might attract more customers to buy that product. Brands affect marketing because the more popular a brand is the more customers are willing to buy that product. The design of the brand and how they design products is used in marketing all the time. I think that those 3 I described are the most important elements.

2. Branding and marketing are the same with the design of experience by them both wanting the best for the customer and wanting the customer to have a good time doing it. The difference is the time span. Branding and marketing is short lived. When promoting an experience you want that experience to last a lifetime and not be forgotten right away. Experiences are meant to last a lifetime not just for a second.

3. The important elements of K's brand position is that it is a very prestigious liberal arts school and it has different designs to show that brand. There are products that display the full words Kalamazoo College in all sorts of colors, products with a big black and orange K on it and many other ways of displaying Kalamazoo College.When most people around here see these designs they think about how Kalamazoo college is a prestigious liberal arts school. Those different brands are located all throughout the campus. The clothing and other products can be a way of getting the Kalamazoo brand out there.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

"The Experience Architect" Questions

1. I think that there are many points in this reading. One important point talks about how you should start by taking little steps. By changing something so little like, taking out a step that would normally hassle a customer, the customer will reward you by buying your product more just because of giving them a better experience. Trigger points is another important point in this article. You need to ask what is truly important to your customer, these can be small, something you knew or something you had no idea. They are often only one or two essential points and they are called trigger points. With these trigger points you try to make them the best you can and better then competition and you will gain a customers trust and they will go with that product more often. Authenticity is another important point. People like "real" experiences rather than fake ones that you may not experience every time. Real has a genuine appeal to everyone. Another important point is to not be ordinary and try to come up with ways to be extraordinary. You need to create remarkable experiences for everyone in order to be extraordinary and successful.
2. The design of experiences is something that you want the customer to remember for the rest of their life. You try to get that customer to trust and be committed to your service. The design of consumer products is just a physical product being purchased. It isn't something that will stick with you and be engraved in your mind. They are similar by both being made for what the customer wants and what the customer needs.
3. I would have a movie night outside in the quad. It would obviously have to be a great night when it is warm. People could bring blankets, chairs, and anything else they wanted to bring. Concessions would be very cheap. Admission would be free so that would bring out a lot of people. I think that many people would meet others and have a good time just relaxing watching a movie in the quad on a gorgeous night.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

"The Third Place" Questions

1. Ray Oldenburg means that a "Third Place" is somewhere that people can gather and just have great conversation. According to him conversation is the main activity taking place. The Third Place is somewhere you can feel comfortable with whatever you say and leave all personal problems at the door. Examples today of a "Third Place" are pubs, computer cafes, coffeehouses, libraries and health spas. These places are much different from what they used to be, like barbershops, candy stores, bait shops, gun shops and soda fountains. It is somewhere people can just relax and forget about everything.

2. A design elements that contributes to a successful Third Place includes being plain. The place does not have to be so extravagant with colors and things all over the walls. By being plain it gives the place a very comfortable feeling. The size is also important. It should not be really big where you feel that everything is out of scale. I think that the place should be kind of small making people be close to each other and force them to talk so it isn't so uncomfortable. There should be places for seating that also makes it more comfortable.

3. A place that has potential to be a successful Third Place is the basement room in Hoben. It has potential because it fits many of the criteria explained by Oldenburg. It is pretty small tho. I think that would make people have more conversation and talk more to their fellow classmates. I often walk by and see that there are only a couple or no students at all in there just relaxing watching TV. I think that if there were more things promoting going down there to watch a specific show or just doing something down there, it would be a successful Third Place. It could be a place where everyone lets classwork go and just relax and talk and watch TV.

Wikipedia Page

Thursday, November 6, 2008

City Questions

1. Whyte's key points in this chapter were that supply creates demand. A good new space builds its constituency and it gets people into new habits like eating outdoors; induces them to use new paths. He also gives many statistics about people in some of the plazas of New York. About when activity takes place what kind of people are there and a lot of other interesting stuff. The most obvious but overlooked factor in developing a good plaza are the people. You need to draw them in and to do that location is a very important factor in drawing them in. Where people sit and what they sit on also seemed to be a key point in this chapter. During the chapter it talked about the different kinds of seating and what features they all should have. The height of the seating was also a key point. Another key point was how much seating a particular place should actually have. This is very important to think about.

2. The design of urban spaces and the design of consumer products are similar in the fact that the design should be geared to the people that the designers are trying to attract. They both have to sell their product or space by catching a person's attention in a very short time. They are different because products are something the consumer will be able to use and urban spaces are somewhere the person can relax or get things done. Urban spaces can be used for social things like meeting new people while products are usually just for one single person.

3. A checklist used to analyze a public space would be....
  • Location, Location, Location. It has to be in a great location.
  • The amount of seating around.
  • The types of seating ( benches, ledges, chairs, steps)
  • The relationship to the street.
  • Is the place clean and inviting to others.
  • Are people comfortable to be there?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Downtown Kalamazoo

1. I thought that Downtown Kalamazoo had a very nice feel and look to it. I thought that there was a variety of stores that would seem appealing to most. To me I thought that some of the stores that were next together didn't really mix together very well. All of the stores had big glass display windows which is a good thing in my opinion. You could see in almost every store and know what the store sold. I also liked the brick sidewalks that gave off a downtown feeling and look. The sidewalks were also very wide making it very pedestrian friendly. There were a lot of tables, benches, trees, and flowers which would be looked down upon according to Paco but I actually liked all of them around.

2. One recommendation would be to promote downtown more and get more people down there to shop. They could do this by having more billboards promoting it around the city. Another way to bring in more shoppers is possibly bringing in a big store that everyone knows. Another recommendation would be to keep the sidewalks a little cleaner, I noticed that the sidewalks had a lot of pieces of gum on the ground. One last recommendation would be to just bring in some different kinds of stores to appeal to more people.

3. The shade trees and planter boxes? Lovely, he says, but they block shoppers' view of shop windows and signs. Those handsome groupings of benches and tables? They seem inviting until Gibbs points out that they often attract teenagers and other loiterers, who scare off shoppers. The elegant Victorian streetlamps, the expensive trash cans, and the distinctive granite paving stones--"so beautiful that people will stare at them as they walk by the storefronts," Gibbs says--are little more than money down the drain. Their costs must be amortized over many years, but long before they have been paid off (and before the town can afford to replace them) they will be old-fashioned, marking the entire street as out of date and out of step.
Standing outside the gym at the corner of Clematis and Dixie Highway, he discourses at length on an untidy collection of benches, tables, and chairs outside a cafe across the highway. This is civic space only in theory. In fact it poses a threat to civic existence. "Those benches make it look like this is a very difficult place to walk," he says, putting himself in the shoes of the average (that is, female) shopper. "You've got to squeeze between those benches. And if a teenager or some street person happens to be there, you would have to touch them, because you're so close together. That is like a sign saying DON'T ENTER."

I picked these passages because they all have to deal with the benches and trees. Downtown has a lot of benches, tables, and trees. I have to disagree with Gibbs because I think that it is a good thing to have a lot of benches and trees if they are placed right. I think that the trees give off a good look. The benches and tables make it easier for people that just want to take a break from walking around or just eat their lunch.