BROWSE THE TOTAL TECHNOLOGY SPACE MAP TO CONCEIVE NEW APPLICATIONS OF A TECHNOLOGY FOR DESIGN OPPORTUNITIES
Editor: Elies Dekoninck, Andrew Wodehouse, Chris Snider, Georgi Georgiev, Gaetano Cascini
Author: Jianxi Luo
Designers often explore novel applications of their technologies for innovation. However, such searches relied on experiences, expertise or gut feeling. Here we propose the use of a technology space map to enhance the creativity of such a human ideation process for new design opportunities of a given technology. We present an example map in which the domains are approximated as international patent classes and their proximities are quantified using patent data. Designers can browse the map to navigate various technology domains organized by their knowledge proximities throughout the technology space to conceive design opportunities that relate the current technology to other domains for new applications. The map is aimed to facilitate ideation across distant domains. We present one case study of using the map to conceive novel design application opportunities for artificial neural networks. On this basis, a computer system (i.e., InnoGPS) to aid in interactive digital map browsing and design information retrieval is developed.