In this paper, we explore the possibility of reconciling and integrating practical affordance- and function-based design representations. We present a classic function-based design method and representation and argue for the benefits of augmenting it with affordance-based approaches. Building on existing function concept ontologies, we present an integrated approach to developing early-stage design representations. This approach combines the use of affordance and function representations to capture user needs across a device's life cycle. We demonstrate how affordances add rigor and expressiveness to the early stages of traditional design processes, and how traditional function-based tools provide affordance-based design (ABD) with structured methods for concept generation. The integrated approach is illustrated with an example, in which a use case is explicitly decomposed to demonstrate the structure of relationships between users, goals, actions, artifacts, functions, and affordances.
Integrating Function- and Affordance-Based Design Representations
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Contributed by the Design Theory and Methodology Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF MECHANICAL DESIGN. Manuscript received June 20, 2014; final manuscript received November 25, 2014; published online February 16, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Andy Dong.
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Ciavola, B. T., Wu, C., and Gershenson, J. K. (May 1, 2015). "Integrating Function- and Affordance-Based Design Representations." ASME. J. Mech. Des. May 2015; 137(5): 051101. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4029519
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