Design Studio at Agile 2012

Will Evans held a very informative session on Design Studio at Agile 2012. If you’re unfamiliar with the concept of Design Studio, its a highly collaborative and rapid process of designing solutions around a problem domain. The teams were given a design challenge and a persona to work against.

The first challenge is to identify the 4 Cs – Characters, Components, Characteristics, Challenges. Each of the 4 teams were given an area and were asked to cross-pollinate to define each of the areas.

The collaboration dynamic reminded me of the 35 game – but more chaotic. Perhaps, incorporating 35 may help put more structure around this exercise… something to ponder.

Following this definition phase, we moved on to the rapid sketching of 6-8 ups and team critiques. This stage of team critiquing is called 2 X 2. Each member identifies 2 brilliant ideas and 2 potential ideas for each of the 6-8 ups presented. Team members are also encourage to integrate good ideas into their own solution. This merging of ideas can potentially draw out the team’s opinion of “best of breed.”

My first exposure to design studio was some time back at an IxD session ran by Todd Zaki Warfel.

The entire process was compressed to fit into the 3 hour session but was very effective – particularly for the uninitiated.

Here are some key points I took from the session:

- The goal for Design Studio is to design a hypothesis for MVPs

- It’s important to have strict time boxes for each evolution of the Design Studio

- It’s possible to do away with wire frames – in a world where design works side-by-side with dev to solve a problem

Ritual Decent

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