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Cursus: 201400572
Smart Products
Cursus informatie
Studiepunten (ECTS)15
Contactpersoonir. H. Tragter
VorigeVolgende 5
J.F.H. Beeloo
Docent A.P. van den Beukel
dr. J. van Dijk
R.J. den Haan
ir. I.F. Lutters-Weustink
AanmeldingsprocedureZelf aanmelden via OSIRIS Student
Inschrijven via OSIRISJa
Design of Smart Products
  1. explore the application of information technology and sensors, formulate a unique selling point and develop test models.
  2. design a product that can sense the environment, generate or collect data, make smart choices, and react to the real-world.
  3. analyze product functions, define objectives, write clear criteria and record well-informed requirements for smart products.
  4. understand technological challenges and societal considerations and apply solutions which are in line with European directives to manage risk and achieve the expected safety level.
  5. decompose the functions, choose smart elements (sensors and actuators), create solutions, embed the logic and evaluate the chosen solutions.
  6. design internal interactions for the product, integrate the product functions, model its behaviour and evaluate the performance of the test model.
  7. explain and apply basic concepts and principles of selected approaches in Philosophy of Technology (especially: Value sensitive design)
  8. identify some of the key principles and norms of ethics guidelines in the field of industrial design.
Human Factors
  1. knowledge and understanding of user-centred design principles
  2. define a user-centred list of requirements by means of PACT analysis and apply function analysis to allocate functions to either user or product
  3. iteratively design and prototype an user interface according to user-centred design guidelines and using a variety of prototyping techniques
  4. evaluate conceptual designs by means of heuristics
  5. devise a set-up for a usability test
  6. evaluate a product design by means of usability testing (Project Smart Products)
  1. Analyze functions in an electronic system and translate them into analog and digital hardware.
  2. Describe signals and signal processing in an electronic system in the time domain, frequency domain and in terms of filtering, sampling and quantization.
  3. Analyze and calculate the function of simple analog and digital circuits containing passive elements, sources, transistors, opamps and logic gates.
  4. Understand the transformation of physical quantities into electrical signals (sensors) and vice versa (actuators) and use this in the design of an electronic system.
  5. Calculate power consumption of components, circuits and systems at the level of the network analysis in this course.
  6. Build simple circuits, execute measurments and interpret and explain the measuement results.
Design and Styling
  1. Create divers proposals for the styling of products using iterative sketching as a tool
  2. Recognize, use and create seven different forms of collages in a specific moment of the design process
  3. Distinguish four different levels of translation (copying, transforming, human product interaction and using a metaphor) and apply them into the design proces to create more meaningful designs
  4. Recognize and manipulate social cultural patterns in a specific context
  5. Translate social cultural patterns in forms, colours, materials, interaction opportunities and a physical model by using the four levels of translation
Application Development
  1. Explain the role of information and communication technology in the practice of designing and developing products.
  2. Explain the concept of object-oriented programming.
  3. Create simple programs in an object-oriented programming language.
  4. Develop data types, control structures and methods to support structured programming.
  5. Design data structures that reflect objects in the real world.
  6. Design Graphical User Interfaces.

General module description
The module focusses on the design of (consumer) products that show intelligent behavior. The designed products are intended to operate in the ‘real world’; i.e. interact with users, making observations of their environment and performing actions that change the state of their environment. Furthermore the products receive an appearance that is functional but also triggers the visual expression. The enablers for intelligence are electronics (microcontrollers, sensors), electro-mechanical actuator functions and software. User interaction may be created in a display plus buttons approach, but is certainly not limited to these techniques.
Students learn to explore possible solutions in those isolated domains and also are challenged to present integrated solutions for the whole.
To the students, the module offers one single design assignment plus knowledge in five distinct areas covered in five courses (parts). The design task is carried out by teams of four students and covers first phases of a development cycle - product ideas through global design – and it includes the building of testing models.
  • Project: one integrated development assignment in groups of four students.
  • Courses: Electronics, software engineering, human factors, smart systems design, design for emotion.
Educational approach
Learning efficiency increases (up to 5 times) in situations where the new knowledge is not only presented in a lecture but is also being applied. The ‘smart’ module stimulates this effect with a 50/50 split in the activity time. Mornings are filled with the presentation of new knowledge in lectures with an individual character for the students. The afternoons however are allocated to project work. Students need to apply their (new) knowledge in the design project. Here they a) apply, b) discuss /collaborate and c) integrate knowledge from other courses in the module. The student groups are self-steering and have a responsibility for progress and distribution of tasks. Teachers take the role of specialists that can be consulted by groups.

Design of Smart Products
The course focuses on the application of information technology and sensors for the design of smart products. Exploration of possibilities, meeting technological challenges and creating solutions are the primary capabilities that the course students have to achieve. The students are asked to design a product that is able to sense the environment, generate or collect data, make smart choices, and react to its environment. Students are expected to deliver test models and evaluate them.

The course uses the project as a carrier. For the given project, students need to analyze problem and define their objectives and requirements. This demands understanding of societal considerations and European legislations which benchmark the required safety level. To start making the product, its functions should be well defined and decomposed. Then the students choose smart elements (sensors and actuators), create solutions, embed the logic and evaluate the chosen solutions. To embody the selected solution, students pay attention to internal interacitons, modeling the product behaviour, and integation of product functions. The test models are presented at the end of the course.

Next to technical aspects, the course aims to raise awareness about the norms of ethics guidelines in the field of industrial design and approaches in Philosophy of Technology (especially: Value sensitive design).

In general the course consists of:
  • lectures
  • exercises
  • group assignment
  • review sessions
  • theory test
Human Factors
Iteratively design and prototype an user interface according to user-centred design guidelines and using a variety of prototyping techniques, like: story boards, paper prototyping and interactive demo's.

Aim of this course is to give students insight in the functionality of electronic systems. On the one hand a broad overview is given of the field of Electronics. On the other hand students get acquainted with the terminology and functionality of electronics by predicting and calculating the behaviour of electronic circuits and systems themselves.
  • Electronic signals (time domain, frequency domain, periodic and non-periodic signals)
  • Electric Circuits (sources, R,L,C, transformers, Kirchhoff's Laws, input- and output resistance) and Filtering (high pass and low pass filters)
  • Semiconductor Components (diode, transistor, IC)
  • Feedback, Amplifiers and OPAMPS (inverting and non-inverting amplifying circuits)
  • Sensors and actuators (light, sound, temperature, distance, etc.)
  • Interfacing and data handling (A/D and D/A converters, digital communication)
  • Digital logic (combinatorial circuits)
  • Energy (power, energy sources)
  • Laboratory work
Design and Styling
During this course students learn to discuss and apply the styling of products. Besides taking into account the more technical requirements, it is also important to formulate social cultural parameters. Within the course we practice to recognize social cultural parameters and learn how to apply them in the design process.  The course focuses on several levels of translating an inspirationsource into a concrete styling of a product, from simply copying style characteristics to using a metaphor in a design project. To practice with the different levels we use a step by step model. In the course the focus is more on iterative sketching instead of creating a correct presentation drawing.

Application Development
The course follows two paths: the first one consists of lectures and lab exercises to present the basics of software engineering and acquire programming skills. The second path is part of a multidisciplinary assignment where teams have to develop a smart product. Students work on both paths in parallel. The team work involves describing the (smart) behavior of the product, translating the behavior to a user interface plus software structure and development of a prototype to proof the concept.
Furthermore students will develop knowledge of embedded systems and the techniques involved in data acquisition and control.
Verplicht materiaal
Design of Smart Products: Blackboard
Design of Smart Products: Powerpoint presentation Lectures, Readers
Human Factors: Design Interactive Systems - David Benyon
Electronics: Lecture notes Electronics (sold by teachers before first lecture)
Electronics: Lab manual (digitally available) Exercise manual (digitally available)
Design and Emotion: Muses in Design - Corremans J. & Mulder-Nijkamp, M. ISBN 9789058755520
Design and Emotion: Drawing materials (fineliner, markers, A3 paper), laptop
Aanbevolen materiaal
Human Factors: Product Design - A.O. Eger, D. Lutters, G.M. Bonnema & M.C. van der Voort








Zelfstudie met begeleiding

Application Development

Written exam (MC and open questions), assignments


Written exam with MC questions, lab journal

Human Factors

Written exam with MC questions, group assignment with oral exam

Design of Smart Products

Written exam (MC and open questions), assignment, final assignment

Project 'Smart Products'

Design and Styling


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