Exploration and Creation

Act of searching and creating
Purpose of human discovery and initiation
Act of searching for new, undiscovered resources
Research new compositions, devices, or processes

Time defining problem forms conceptual structures, increases creative result
Creative imagination is worth more than mere book knowledge

Creative synthesis

"Absolutely no form which in the meaning and value of its content is not something more than the mere sum of its factors or than the mere mechanical resultant of its components" (Wilhelm Wundt)
- Combining elements to form a coherent new whole
- Possession by a whole of qualities not possessed by the parts
- Combination, as distinguished from mixture — coalescence as distinguished from coexistence — resulting in something new

Design space
Co-evolution of problem–solution
Problem (P', P'') and Solution (S', S'') space

Creative resultant
Individuated whole, either perceptual or ideal.
Combination of elements and acquirement of meaning through that combination and reconstruction.
Affective-volitional meaning acquired in construction.

Iterative phases
- design requirement
- design solution
Exploration in one space delineated by the data in the other space

Two-way effect of spaces
- Design requirements/solutions emergence
- Mechanism for transmit knowledge between spaces
Problem and solution space interaction can be modeled as a "quality function"
Boundary expansion of a search space during the design process

Common changes
- Design focus
- Specific makeup
Space environment changes

Quality of being suitable
- Local variable
- Changes in each phase
- Not comparable

Quality of being suitable is used to determine which design remains
Synthesis (coalescence) occurs when new ideas cannot be found
Ending conditions do not rely on the quality of being suitable


Beginning event
Problem space


Pre-existing model or idea
Education and intelligence means to facilitate liberation of creative energy

Formulation of problem
Identification of variables (also known as a "Design brief" or "Parti")
Design requirement

Careful systematic search
Independently conceived radical breakthrough
Analysis and classification of variables
Research and selection of variables
Influence variables to adhere to non-negotiable variables
Design requirements/solutions emergence

Novel and not obvious knowledge
Conceptualize and document solutions (Problem solving)
Optimize variables which are negotiable variables
Design solution


Extend the knowledge boundaries
Present and evaluate existing design
Development and improvement of solution
Test and and measure solution


Artifact brought into existence
Implement solution into the environment
Evaluate solution and and results

Further reading

  • Henri Christiaans and Kees Venselaar. Creativity in Design Engineering and the Role of Knowledge: Modelling the Expert.
  • ML Maher, Reconsidering Fitness and Covergence in Co-evolutionary Design. 1999

External articles

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