ThingTank @ MIT-Skoltech Innovation Symposium 2014

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Information about ThingTank @ MIT-Skoltech Innovation Symposium 2014

Published on July 7, 2014

Author: nrubens


ThingTank IdeasLab @ CEI MIT SkolTech Initiative Neil Rubens (UEC,Tokyo) Elisa Giacardi (TU Delft) Chris Speed (Edinburgh)

$200Cost $50 $5 $0.01 Traditional Product Development n  focus on improving some of the aspects: Innovation n  doing something different rather than doing the same thing better n  combining concepts from different realms that would not normally be put together

Innovation Difficulty n  basic design of fork hasn’t changed for centuries

What can we do differently in order to be innovative?

What if we change the way we use things?

What if we change the way we use things?

Novel Products Development

Usage-centered Product Innovation discover novel usages create new products ? ?!?!????!!?!?? ??!!?!????!!?!? ???!!?!??????! !?!????!!?!!!?? ??!!?!???!!!?!? Proposed p.s. this works for any thing (not only for the forks)

Please think of other ways in which forks could be used.

Coming up with many ideas is difficult. What can we do about it?

Product Development: Traditional designer crowd things

Product Development: Current n  & community designer community things 712 contributors

Product Development: Future n  & things n  1 designer, 100’s of contributors, millions of things designer community things n  Internet of Things n  soon more data will be produced by things than humans (Gartner) happilab

Challenge: Availability of Data n  sensors are not widespread yet

Solution n  Use traditional (external) sensors: i.e. camera/photos, etc. millions of photos are available online

n  Use AI to identify different usages Solution different

Bottom-up AI-assisted Product Innovation n  use AI to find different usages of things n  to collaborate with community & designers n  on product innovation innovation designer community things

Usage-based Innovation

Deviation n  Object is used for a different purpose (than originally intended) n  Object is not modified

Hybridization n  The object is used for a different purpose than originally intended, however in order to perform additional function the object is modified.

Partial Hybridization n  object adopts some of the desirable properties of another object n  usage is unchanged

Repurpose n  object is modified for new usage n  object is no longer able to perform its original function

Instrumentation n  object is fitted with additional sensors n  may provide sensory feedback to the user

Property Adaptation n  new object adopts some of the desirable properties of the original object n  usage is changed

simple fork inspired many products Innovationn  doing something different n  combining concepts from different realms that would not normally be put together what if we innovate based on other products:

Things <-> Usages n  Things -> Usages n  e.g. different usages of fork n  Things <- Usages n  e.g. different approaches to storage

Which Innovation resulted in: n  320% rise in bilateral trade; during the first 5 years of adoption n  By comparison, a bilateral free-trade agreement raised trade by: 45% over 20 years (Economist)


Can we find innovative storage things & uses

stairs used as storage storage used as stairs

Cute pictures, but is this practical?

phones are now rarely used as phones

Project Goals n  Development of AI-assisted platform for discovery of innovative links between things <-> usages n  Construction of large-scale usage database n  Development of innovative products and approaches

Benefits n  Product Innovation n  Long-tail Manufacturing n  allow manufacturers to create a variety of new products n  Educational n  Teaching tool for innovation & creativity n  Environmental n  reuse, multi-purpose n  more project usages are yet to be discovered …

References n  References for all of the images are listed on

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Andralyn | 19/07/16
The answer of an exetpr. Good to hear from you.

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