Design sector: Strong and Weak Signals: Revision

Last updated 18. July 2016 by admin

Key observations about the initial view of the Design Sector Significance Matrix based on Desired Future Analysis.

Significance of TechnologiesSignificance of Techniques/Processes
Application/Software (100) Design (100)
Software applications that are used in the creative process or by the end user e.g. Adobe, Photoshop, Maya and Illustrator. Development of interfaces or tools for improved Design process experience. The formal process of creating a design e.g. drawing, CAD
Hosted Services (28) Collaboration (73)
Technologies which are contained spaces, possibly remote from the creator and/or end user e.g. web services, e-stores, big data, Hosted Co-working spaces, Collaboration platforms, Internet of Things (IOT) The process of using the Collaborating around Standards and Convergence. Individual, Community or Societal Analysis/Research, Addressing Obsolescence, Flexibility, Adaptability, Modularity.
Output Physical (24) Ideation (60)
Technology which outputs a physical artefact e.g. 3D printers used in fabrication and prototyping The process of generating ideas or inspiration for creativity prior to formal design - e.g. mindmaps, sketching
Output Sensory (24) Integration (40)
Technology which outputs in a virtual sensory format e.g. Displays, VR Headsets, AR Displays, tactile/haptic feedback, audio. The process of integrating 2 or more stages of the design lifecycle such as Ideation and Design or Idea to Consumption, Sketch to Reality.
Communications (22) Fabrication (31)
Technology which connects the creator or end user to distant services e.g. networks, broadband, mobile, internet The process of creating an artefact e.g. prototyping, publishing, printing or creating multiple copies of it


Most Significant Technology/Process pairings

Application/Software in Design (100)

How software applications specifically are used and developed through more coherent interfaces and tools that contribute to the formal process of design

Collaboration around Application Development and Utilisation (51)

Collaborating for development of Standards. Policies and Convergence of practices including Interoperability across software applications. Research into development of software by the Individual, Community. Application development for Societal Analysis/Research, Addressing Obsolescence, Flexibility, Adaptability, Modularity.

Collaboration around use and Development of Hosted Services (29)

Fostering Collaboration for establishing Standards, Policies and Convergence of practices for Hosted Services including Cloud operations, Big Data, Storage and Social/Sharing services. Including development and use of Hosted services to foster Individual, Community or Societal Analysis/Research, Addressing Obsolescence, Flexibility, Adaptability, Modularity

Integration around Application features and Sketch to Reality interfaces (18)

Integration of Applications across different stages of the Design Lifecycle as well as development beyond it in Continuing Professional Development and Collaboration. Includes integrating the Sketch to Reality workflow or pipeline.

Collaboration around use and Development of Communication Services (14)

Encouraging people to collaborate around developing shared communications services and platforms such as Skype, Online Conferencing, Shared Networked Design. Doing this by enhancing digital networks, broadband and internet services as well as developing new network communication standards for enhanced teamwork through digital mediums such as Intranets, Internet as well as private networks.

Design Software support for Fabrication

Applications that have interfaces to contribute to rapid prototyping and more effective sketch to reality practices.

Timescale: Opportunities within 5 years

  1. Marketing & Distribution / Input Sensory. (Highest Technique Area Score 100)

    Designers desire new interfaces for creation. They frequently request better sketch to reality capabilities and have an issue with digital outputs constraining the intuitive aspects of design. There is an overall desire to move away from relying on mouse, keyboard and traditional input devices and migrate towards haptic forms of input as well as EEG sensitive input and 3D Scanning such as Photogrammetry. This demands migrating towards device prototypes based on tactile and other sensory forms of creation. For this to be supported there needs to be resources, training and investment put into the technologies and processes that serve the sketch to reality workflow. This requires a focussed Marketing & Distribution approach to input devices especially sensory based forms of interface. The strongest score for emerging trends (100) is shown in this area so promotion, sales and investment of these technologies is recommended. This was echoed in experts saying technologies should assist rather than guide the creative process and the notion that tools should become more invisible and inconspicuously reacting to our needs.

  2. Fabrication /Input Sensory (2nd Highest Technique Area Score 74)

    There is desire for Fabrication technology advancement (Score 100 amongst Process categories) but there are limitations at the Ideation/Design phase of the workflow. There is a general need for fluid interoperability particularly related to Integrated 3D Advancement across the Design Lifecycle. This need is shared with the desire for better input interfaces and devices already indicated in the first recommendation given above (Scores 80 and 82). Think Tank feedback emphasised the need to make Physical Output technologies, such as 3D Printing, more accessible to a wider range of Designers as well as 3D screens and higher resolutions displays (Score 69). There is also interest in adopting and applying Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality technologies to present and test products for clients and customers in user research. A desire that emerged was being able to take the sensory input modelled in designs, especially related to the feel of materials, being used for the design, to be accurately fabricated for their sensory quality when produced as physical output, such as through a 3D Printing process (This includes process areas of Ideation, Design and Fabrication across all fundamental technologies from Hardware to Output Sensory).

Timescale: Challenges within 5 years

  1. There is a widespread need to address bottlenecks in knowledge training and Socialware . This calls for new approaches to Collaboration and developing supportive business models to serve dispersal of these bottlenecks in workflow.
  2. A shortcoming with Technical Professionals and Engineers is in Socialware/CPD around Operating Systems which is scoring low (Score 0). Unless CPD is provided for Operating Systems and their use in Socialware there could be reduction of effectiveness in Application development as well as efforts fostering collaboration.
  3. Design Clients, Customers, Engineers and sector professionals called for greater collaboration between Application and Technology vendors to develop integrated features, interoperability and user focused interfaces. There are inferences towards convergence of standards, and policies for integrated, open source approaches to design workflows.

Timescale: Gaps needing resolution within 5 to 10 years

  1. How Collaboration and Socialware/CPD are fostered are currently showing up as likely to be short of resources, investment and skills. The industry needs to develop new job roles to encourage Collaboration between end users and vendors as well as between vendors.
  2. There are particular bottlenecks in Applications and how they facilitate Socialware/CPD, so it is recommended developing or making available Applications for Continuing Professional Development and Social Exchange.
  3. Validation event feedback highlighted the need to express interests of public sector experiences of design especially on service design as opposed to product design. The design sector needed to focus on Social innovation leveraging design thinking to tackle pressing societal needs such as Health, Welfare, Housing, Mobility and Education.

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