On 10 June, the AIT Center for Technology Experience hosted the TEDxVienna event The Type to Prototype. In a workshop, the attendees learned what it means to make a prototype and got hands-on experience.
In groups of four, they were facing the “AIT critical making challenge”, in which they had to build a simple prototype for a system to measure and share one’s emotions. The goal of prototyping is not necessarily to end up with a perfect model. The process of making is in itself valuable and can be used to learn – this is referred to as critical making. By deliberately leaving the exact design purpose and approaches open, questions arise automatically during the development of the prototype.
At the end of the workshop, each team presented their prototype and tested it with a person, who was not in the respective team. This showcased the importance to test your prototype and see how a potential customer would experience the product. In a real life scenario, these data would then be used to refine, improve or trash a prototype.
The act of critical making in the end led to a variety of different prototypes. The ideas ranged from the “icebreaker” jewelry used to connect and exchange digital information and emotions at big events, toys reading a baby’s emotions, algorithms coloring texts automatically corresponding to the according mood underlying the sentence, anonymous live voting tools for events to control the atmosphere, the alarm system “feely” for relatives in case a loved one is sad for a long time period and much more.
Find the TEDx Vienna blog post here
Find a video about the whole TEDx Adventure Day here