Standard deviation : standardization and quality control in the mash-up era

PHILLIPS, Robert, DEXTER, Matt, BAURLEY, Sharon and ATKINSON, Paul (2016). Standard deviation : standardization and quality control in the mash-up era. Disegno : TheJournal of Design Culture, 3 (1-2), 96-117.

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Abstract

Standards touch many aspects of our lives, from purchasing to consuming, to maintaining product consistencies (e.g. ISO 9001). Standardization aids replicating: compliance, quality and durability to diffuse geographic areas, driving innovation by providing constraints (BSI). Historically, standardization was a cornerstone for commerce enabling traders to interact, trusting accurate measures, used in judging a product’s worth. Open Design utilizes Internet-accessible digital making platforms, for creating and disseminating ideas. The rise of Fabrication Laboratories and distributed digital manufacturing (e.g. domestic 3D printing) has increased accessibility of high-quality manufacture. Design agents as well as designers can create products; either for personal use from the bottom-up, or re-appropriate another maker’s solution. Reciprocity is key to the process. As such, in this paper we refer to design agents, rather than applying labels of “professional” or “user”. However, as design agents become enabled to produce complex artefacts, “objective validation” for shared blueprints quality, becomes imminent. For example, 3D printing is reviving DIY toy making, with materials that can degrade overtime, potentially presenting choking hazards. Due to this status quo, the authors are not presenting lawsuit opportunities, but preventative procedures whilst encouraging proliferation of design agent led Open Design. Regulatory requirements for sectors touched by “open phenomenon” are unprepared. How can maker communities, design agents and others lead the way in promoting ways of working that enable robust quality control in open environments? To answer this question, interviews with British Standards Institute (BSI) representatives were triangulated with design workshops. This participatory approach to knowledge creation was chosen due to its inherent compatibility with the theoretical underpinnings of Open Design. This paper presents models exploring “standards integration” for Open Design purposes, enabling design agents to create “compliant” outputs, to benefit all. We conclude that there are possible avenues for standardization, but that this must be tested in the field. #open design, #digital manufacture, #industry standards

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group: Cultural Communication and Computing Research Institute > Art and Design Research Centre
Departments: Arts, Computing, Engineering and Sciences > Art and Design
Identification Number: 10.21096/disegno_2016_1-2rp-md-sb-pa
Depositing User: Paul Atkinson
Date Deposited: 30 Nov 2016 11:36
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2016 11:41
URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/14116

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