Can Timelessness through Prototypicality Support Sustainability? A Strategy for Product Designers

Deana C McDonagh, Flood Heaton, Rachel McDonagh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

‘Timelessness’ in design has been linked to environmental sustainability through an increased product lifetime-of-use. However, timelessness may be difficult for product designers to achieve. One approach to creating aesthetic timelessness is visual simplicity—yet ‘simple’ can be a challenge to define, let alone to create. Underutilized concepts from the field of cognitive psychology such as categorization levels and prototype effects shed light on the way our minds process visual meaning in everyday objects, and the cognitive efficiency found in these concepts may be interpreted as a type of simplicity. If designers apply these concepts to product designs to prolong positive aesthetic experience, product lifetime can potentially be extended. Products and contexts that are potentially suitable or unsuitable for this approach are identified and discussed.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S110-S121
JournalThe Design Journal
Volume20
Issue numberSup 1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2017

Fingerprint

Product design
Sustainable development
Product Designers
Sustainability
Prototypicality
Timelessness

Keywords

  • aesthetics
  • prototype effects
  • basic level
  • design
  • emotional sustainability

Cite this

Can Timelessness through Prototypicality Support Sustainability? A Strategy for Product Designers. / McDonagh, Deana C; Heaton, Flood; McDonagh, Rachel.

In: The Design Journal, Vol. 20, No. Sup 1, 2017, p. S110-S121.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

McDonagh, Deana C ; Heaton, Flood ; McDonagh, Rachel. / Can Timelessness through Prototypicality Support Sustainability? A Strategy for Product Designers. In: The Design Journal. 2017 ; Vol. 20, No. Sup 1. pp. S110-S121.
@article{8968b4c1fa234f8c9f7bba1737611a58,
title = "Can Timelessness through Prototypicality Support Sustainability?: A Strategy for Product Designers",
abstract = "‘Timelessness’ in design has been linked to environmental sustainability through an increased product lifetime-of-use. However, timelessness may be difficult for product designers to achieve. One approach to creating aesthetic timelessness is visual simplicity—yet ‘simple’ can be a challenge to define, let alone to create. Underutilized concepts from the field of cognitive psychology such as categorization levels and prototype effects shed light on the way our minds process visual meaning in everyday objects, and the cognitive efficiency found in these concepts may be interpreted as a type of simplicity. If designers apply these concepts to product designs to prolong positive aesthetic experience, product lifetime can potentially be extended. Products and contexts that are potentially suitable or unsuitable for this approach are identified and discussed.",
keywords = "aesthetics, prototype effects, basic level, design, emotional sustainability",
author = "McDonagh, {Deana C} and Flood Heaton and Rachel McDonagh",
year = "2017",
doi = "10.1080/14606925.2017.1352671",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "20",
pages = "S110--S121",
journal = "The Design Journal",
issn = "1460-6925",
publisher = "Berg Publishers",
number = "Sup 1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Can Timelessness through Prototypicality Support Sustainability?

T2 - A Strategy for Product Designers

AU - McDonagh, Deana C

AU - Heaton, Flood

AU - McDonagh, Rachel

PY - 2017

Y1 - 2017

N2 - ‘Timelessness’ in design has been linked to environmental sustainability through an increased product lifetime-of-use. However, timelessness may be difficult for product designers to achieve. One approach to creating aesthetic timelessness is visual simplicity—yet ‘simple’ can be a challenge to define, let alone to create. Underutilized concepts from the field of cognitive psychology such as categorization levels and prototype effects shed light on the way our minds process visual meaning in everyday objects, and the cognitive efficiency found in these concepts may be interpreted as a type of simplicity. If designers apply these concepts to product designs to prolong positive aesthetic experience, product lifetime can potentially be extended. Products and contexts that are potentially suitable or unsuitable for this approach are identified and discussed.

AB - ‘Timelessness’ in design has been linked to environmental sustainability through an increased product lifetime-of-use. However, timelessness may be difficult for product designers to achieve. One approach to creating aesthetic timelessness is visual simplicity—yet ‘simple’ can be a challenge to define, let alone to create. Underutilized concepts from the field of cognitive psychology such as categorization levels and prototype effects shed light on the way our minds process visual meaning in everyday objects, and the cognitive efficiency found in these concepts may be interpreted as a type of simplicity. If designers apply these concepts to product designs to prolong positive aesthetic experience, product lifetime can potentially be extended. Products and contexts that are potentially suitable or unsuitable for this approach are identified and discussed.

KW - aesthetics

KW - prototype effects

KW - basic level

KW - design

KW - emotional sustainability

U2 - 10.1080/14606925.2017.1352671

DO - 10.1080/14606925.2017.1352671

M3 - Article

VL - 20

SP - S110-S121

JO - The Design Journal

JF - The Design Journal

SN - 1460-6925

IS - Sup 1

ER -