The future of design is becoming ever more digital: from the computer-aided design systems designers use to create 3D models of their inventions, to the digital fabrication machines that can build physical objects previously impossible to manufacture, to the online crowd-sourcing research tools that allow researchers to collect thousands of responses to their studies. How best can thinking about computing be embedded in the philosophy of design, and design research? This workshop proposes some responses to this question, specifically considering the design of physical objects.
Philippa Mothersill (also known as Pip) is a PhD student at the MIT Media Lab, where she explores the language of design, particularly how objects can communicate information to us through their form. She hopes this research can be used to help develop computational processes for the design of static and dynamically expressive objects. She is also interested in the creation of tools to help people design functional objects which can express higher-level sentiments of their ideas via aesthetic forms. Before the Media Lab, Philippa worked for three years as a product designer for Procter&Gamble, where she led the upstream industrial design of new products by bringing together design research, marketing narrative, and functional technology to create the first aesthetically designed functional prototype in a product’s development cycle. She holds a MEng in Aeronautical Engineering, and a joint MA/MSc degree in Industrial Design Engineering from the Royal College of Art and Imperial College, London.