What is the Value of Prototyping? Empirical Studies of How Prototyping Practices Affect Learning, Motivation, and Outcome in Design

PI: Prof. Scott Klemmer


While it sometimes seems like ideas arise out of thin air, creativity is necessarily the result of applying existing knowledge. Designers in many fields rely on examples for inspiration. The billions of pages on the Web today provide a corpus of design examples unparalleled in human history. Over the past three years, our HPDTRP-sponsored research has focused on the value of creating and sharing multiple alternative prototypes. As part of this research, we invented several strategies for empirically studying creative work that are now being adopted by several other research groups. In Year 4, we will study the role of examples in creative work, and build software tools that leverage the power of examples to help more people be more creative.