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Article

Martin Sexton, Jack Goulding, Xiaonan Zhang, Mike Kagioglou, Ghassan Aouad, Rachel Cooper and Peter Barrett

The purpose of this paper is to identify interdependent barriers to the search and selection of new technologies by design engineers at industry, organisation and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify interdependent barriers to the search and selection of new technologies by design engineers at industry, organisation and individual levels. A “proof of concept” HyCon tool is presented to demonstrate the role of information technology design support tools in supporting designers to overcome these inhibitors, in this case for hybrid concrete, by providing immersive and interactive, information‐rich environments to explore design solutions.

Design/methodology/approach

The HyCon tool was developed through a prototyping methodology encompassing a testing, analysis, design and coding iterative cycle. This was supported by case studies and industry workshops.

Findings

The results of a collaborative research project are presented, which describes the HyCon design support tool to promote the understanding and use of hybrid concrete in structural frames. This tool is built around a knowledge creation, application, storage, and retrieval cycle to envision and support the use of this new technology.

Originality/value

This paper fulfils an identified need to integrate technology management and design process considerations within the context of an information technology design support tool, and offers a “proof of concept” HyCon tool to demonstrate key issues and potential utilities and applications.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 12 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article

Jason B. Forsyth and Thomas L. Martin

To be successful, pervasive computing requires a balance of computing, design, and business requirements to be considered throughout the design process. Achieving this…

Abstract

Purpose

To be successful, pervasive computing requires a balance of computing, design, and business requirements to be considered throughout the design process. Achieving this synthesis requires a level of interdisciplinary design that is not present in current pervasive design tools. To understand the state of the art and provide insight to future tool designers, the purpose of this paper is to present a survey of design tools for pervasive computing and consider their ability to be used in interdisciplinary design.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors have performed a survey of tools covering many areas within pervasive computing and have evaluated the abilities of each tool with established metrics for pervasive design tools.

Findings

While the paper has found many design tools are available for constructive pervasive applications, few are suitable through all phases of the design cycle or useful across all the intended application domains of pervasive computing.

Originality/value

This survey provides an understanding of the state of pervasive design tools, with regards to interdisciplinary design, which has not previously been performed. Additionally, the authors provide evaluations of the pervasive tools when used in an interdisciplinary setting. These evaluations provide insight to key metrics and allow tool designers to understand the needs of their intended audience.

Details

International Journal of Pervasive Computing and Communications, vol. 8 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-7371

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Article

Asmalina Saleh, Cindy E. Hmelo-Silver, Krista D. Glazewski, Bradford Mott, Yuxin Chen, Jonathan P. Rowe and James C. Lester

This paper aims to present a model of collaborative inquiry play: rule-based imaginary situations that provide challenging problems and support agentic multiplayer…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present a model of collaborative inquiry play: rule-based imaginary situations that provide challenging problems and support agentic multiplayer interactions (c.f., Vygotsky, 1967; Salen and Zimmerman, 2003). Drawing on problem-based learning (PBL, Hmelo-Silver, 2004), this paper provides a design case to articulate the relationship between the design goals and the game-based learning environment.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing on conjecture mapping (Sandoval, 2014), this paper presents an iterative development of the conjecture map for crystal island: ecojourneys and highlights the development of the story and tools in crystal island: ecojourneys, an immersive game based on PBL pedagogy. By articulating this development, the authors highlight the affordances and constraints of designing for collaborative inquiry play and address challenges in supporting learner agency.

Findings

The PBL inquiry process served as the foundation of collaborative inquiry play. Attending to the rules of inquiry fostered student agency, and in turn, playful engagement in the game-based learning environment. Agency however meant holding students accountable to actions undertaken, especially as it pertained to generating group-based explanations and reflecting on productive collaboration. Moreover, socially shared regulation of learning and systems thinking concepts (i.e. phenomenon, mechanisms, and components) must also be externalized in representations and interactions in the game such that students have the agency to decide on their learning paths.

Originality/value

This paper presents the model of collaborative inquiry play and highlights how to support player agency and design content-rich play environments which are not always completely open.

Details

Information and Learning Sciences, vol. 120 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-5348

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Article

L.A.M. Huertas‐Quintero, P.P. Conway, D.M. Segura‐Velandia and A.A. West

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new software tool to support design for quality (DfQ) in the electronics manufacturing sector where quality and reliability are critical.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new software tool to support design for quality (DfQ) in the electronics manufacturing sector where quality and reliability are critical.

Design/methodology/approach

An integrated modelling framework that enables complete and realistic representations of manufacturing systems is proposed. A software tool, developed based on this framework, offers two modules to support DfQ: simulation and root cause analysis. This paper focuses on the latter.

Findings

Integrated models enable tracing back effects to their root causes. Software tools based on these, kind of models can provide support in finding and eliminating the cause of a particular effect. This capability can be used to perform DfQ in an effective and accurate way.

Research limitations/implications

The approach proposed strongly depends on the quality models within the integrated modelling framework. The models currently available are little and simplified. Future work includes the enrichment of the software by developing and more quality models.

Practical implications

The adoption of the proposed approach in an industrial context requires formalised information to fulfil the data required by the integrated modelling framework.

Originality/value

The main contribution of the paper is the integrated modelling framework definition and its implementation in the form of a software tool. The adoption of this tool in printed circuit assembly companies can support the solution of real quality problems and consequently, help to optimise manufacturing systems in the domain.

Details

Assembly Automation, vol. 31 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-5154

Keywords

Content available
Article

Per Hilletofth, Movin Sequeira and Wendy Tate

This paper investigates the suitability of fuzzy-logic-based support tools for initial screening of manufacturing reshoring decisions.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper investigates the suitability of fuzzy-logic-based support tools for initial screening of manufacturing reshoring decisions.

Design/methodology/approach

Two fuzzy-logic-based support tools are developed together with experts from a Swedish manufacturing firm. The first uses a complete rule base and the second a reduced rule base. Sixteen inference settings are used in both of the support tools.

Findings

The findings show that fuzzy-logic-based support tools are suitable for initial screening of manufacturing reshoring decisions. The developed support tools are capable of suggesting whether a reshoring decision should be further evaluated or not, based on six primary competitiveness criteria. In contrast to existing literature this research shows that it does not matter whether a complete or reduced rule base is used when it comes to accuracy. The developed support tools perform similarly with no statistically significant differences. However, since the interpretability is much higher when a reduced rule base is used and it require fewer resources to develop, the second tool is more preferable for initial screening purposes.

Research limitations/implications

The developed support tools are implemented at a primary-criteria level and to make them more applicable, they should also include the sub-criteria level. The support tools should also be expanded to not only consider competitiveness criteria, but also other criteria related to availability of resources and strategic orientation of the firm. This requires further research with regard to multi-stage architecture and automatic generation of fuzzy rules in the manufacturing reshoring domain.

Practical implications

The support tools help managers to invest their scarce time on the most promising reshoring projects and to make timely and resilient decisions by taking a holistic perspective on competitiveness. Practitioners are advised to choose the type of support tool based on the available data.

Originality/value

There is a general lack of decision support tools in the manufacturing reshoring domain. This paper addresses the gap by developing fuzzy-logic-based support tools for initial screening of manufacturing reshoring decisions.

Details

Industrial Management & Data Systems, vol. 121 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-5577

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Article

Trixie Mottershead and Ceri Woodrow

The purpose of this paper is to explore the clinical perspective of the practicality, utility and face-validity of the dynamic support database (DSD) Red, Amber, Green…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the clinical perspective of the practicality, utility and face-validity of the dynamic support database (DSD) Red, Amber, Green (RAG) rating support tool within adult learning disabilities services in a North West NHS Foundation Trust. The aim of the current project is to evaluate the practicality, utility and face-validity of the DSD RAG rating support tool, as reported by clinicians who have been employing it.

Design/methodology/approach

A mixed-methods design was utilised by asking clinicians to complete a questionnaire in relation to the DSD Support Tool. Questionnaires were distributed across three community learning disability teams within the North West. A total of 50 clinicians completed the questionnaire which included rated responses for quantitative analysis and free-text comments for qualitative analysis.

Findings

Positive ratings given by clinicians suggested good practicality, utility and face-validity in relation to the tool. Analysis of the free-text comments suggested that the tool supported clinical judgement in a standardised way and helped discussions with commissioners. Feedback also provided insights into how the DSD support tool could be improved.

Research limitations/implications

Further investigation would be required to yield higher numbers of participation across NHS Trusts to add reliability to the present findings.

Originality/value

The DSD support tool has been used within the NHS Foundation Trust for the last 12 months however the practicality, utility and face-validity of the tool had not been explored from the clinician perspective.

Details

Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, vol. 13 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-1282

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Article

Dereje Engida Woldemichael and Fakhruldin Mohd Hashim

The purpose of this paper is to describe the framework of conceptual design support tool (CDST) developed to assist designers during conceptual design process. The premise…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe the framework of conceptual design support tool (CDST) developed to assist designers during conceptual design process. The premise of the study is that, by combining human creativity with computer capabilities, it is possible to perform conceptual design process more efficiently than solely manual design. The study aims to show how conceptual design knowledge can be captured from experienced designers and kept in the computer system for later use and how the developed tool assists designers by handling some of the repetitive and time‐consuming tasks.

Design/methodology/approach

A conceptual design process model, which integrates systematic design approach with knowledge‐based system, is proposed. Based on this model, a CDST, which consists of function library, alternative concepts database, different modules for conceptual design activities, and a knowledge‐based system is developed. The alternative concepts database is built based on design reuse philosophy. Furthermore, the tool is designed to accept and save new concepts from the user through its knowledge acquisition module without modifying the source code. The CDST is developed using public domain open source programming environments namely CLIPS, Python, wxPython, and PyCLIPS.

Findings

Through its graphical user interface, CDST assists designers in performing the conceptual design process such as functional modelling, using standard vocabularies of functions, generating concepts and displaying on morphology chart, concept combination, and concept evaluation. The functionality and interaction between the user and the CDST is demonstrated with an example.

Research limitations/implications

Currently, the alternative concepts database consists of concepts from subsea process equipment design and few general mechanical designs. The database can be enhanced by adding more concepts through the knowledge acquisition module provided.

Practical implications

The tool can be used as a knowledge management system in industry by capturing expertise knowledge and to train novice designers. It augments designer's knowledge by providing concepts from past designs.

Originality/value

The research output from this paper can be valuable resource in industry to support designers with computers. The research represents one of the attempts to develop domain independent conceptual design tool that can acquire new concepts throughout its lifetime.

Details

Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology, vol. 9 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1726-0531

Keywords

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Article

Fiorenzo Franceschini and Sergio Rossetto

Rising interest in quality has determined a tangible revision of a new product’s design and a great development of tools for supporting it. The present paper is an attempt…

Abstract

Rising interest in quality has determined a tangible revision of a new product’s design and a great development of tools for supporting it. The present paper is an attempt at systematization of the proposed techniques and methodologies. The analysis is managed with reference to a multidimensional frame (technological and economic‐organizational) in which a design of a new product may be considered. Considers four areas relating to aspects such as new design start‐up and detailed design activities.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. 6 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

Keywords

Content available
Article

Doris Entner, Thorsten Prante, Thomas Vosgien, Alexandru-Ciprian Zăvoianu, Susanne Saminger-Platz, Martin Schwarz and Klara Fink

The paper aims to raise awareness in the industry of design automation tools, especially in early design phases, by demonstrating along a case study the seamless…

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to raise awareness in the industry of design automation tools, especially in early design phases, by demonstrating along a case study the seamless integration of a prototypically implemented optimization, supporting design space exploration in the early design phase and an in operational use product configurator, supporting the drafting and detailing of the solution predominantly in the later design phase.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on the comparison of modeled as-is and to-be processes of ascent assembly designs with and without design automation tools, an automation roadmap is developed. Using qualitative and quantitative assessments, the potentials and benefits, as well as acceptance and usage aspects, are evaluated.

Findings

Engineers tend to consider design automation for routine tasks. Yet, prototypical implementations support the communication and identification of the potential for the early stages of the design process to explore solution spaces. In this context, choosing from and interactively working with automatically generated alternative solutions emerged as a particular focus. Translators, enabling automatic downstream propagation of changes and thus ensuring consistency as to change management were also evaluated to be of major value.

Research limitations/implications

A systematic validation of design automation in design practice is presented. For generalization, more case studies are needed. Further, the derivation of appropriate metrics needs to be investigated to normalize validation of design automation in future research.

Practical implications

Integration of design automation in early design phases has great potential for reducing costs in the market launch. Prototypical implementations are an important ingredient for potential evaluation of actual usage and acceptance before implementing a live system.

Originality/value

There is a lack of systematic validation of design automation tools supporting early design phases. In this context, this work contributes a systematically validated industrial case study. Early design-phases-support technology transfer is important because of high leverage potential.

Details

Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology , vol. 17 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1726-0531

Keywords

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Article

Behjat Zuhaira and Naveed Ahmad

Significant numbers of business process management (BPM) projects fail. Their failure is attributed toward many factors. Among them, low quality of BPM is one reason. Some…

Abstract

Purpose

Significant numbers of business process management (BPM) projects fail. Their failure is attributed toward many factors. Among them, low quality of BPM is one reason. Some of the tasks in BPM have their roots in business process reengineering (BPR). The literature has cited many different critical success and failure factors for quality BPM and BPR. Lack of software tools is one of the technology-oriented factors that results in poor BPM and BPR. This paper aims to build a generic feature set offered by software tools for process modeling their analysis implementation and management. It presents an objective analysis in identifying weaknesses and strengths of these tools, primarily for BPM.

Design/methodology/approach

A method is proposed to evaluate the quality of process reengineering and management delivered by software tools. It consists of four phases: feature extraction, tool selection, data extraction and tool evaluation.

Findings

The data gathered is quantified to test research hypotheses, the results are statistically significant and highlight multiple areas for future improvements. Moreover, the cluster visualizations created also help to understand the strengths and weaknesses of BPM/BPR tools.

Research limitations/implications

Despite the research approach used, there is a chance of subjectivity when it comes to evaluating different tools.

Practical implications

The paper includes implications for practitioners and researchers for choosing appropriate software tool for process modeling, analysis, implementation and management, matching their requirements with BPM and BPR. It also identifies features that are missing in these tools.

Originality/value

This paper provides a comprehensive analysis of BPM and supporting tools, relates them to key stages of BPM life cycle and BPR methodologies. It also identifies various areas for further development in these tools.

Details

Business Process Management Journal, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-7154

Keywords

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