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What do Prototypes Prototype?

Thu Nov 9, 2023

Please read What do Prototypes Prototype. Please pick out 3 quotes from the paper and write 1 paragraph response for each.


“We propose a change in the language used to talk about prototypes, to focus more attention on fundamental questions about the interactive system being designed: What role will the artifact play in a user's life?”

Shifting the way we frame prototypes from making pretty mock-ups to understanding how this product will fit into the user's life would likely make the most impact from the designer's perspective in trying to understand who they're designing for. It's too easy to jump into action and start designing based on the designer's biases or following trends rather than sitting down and planning which angle you would like to tackle or what you're trying to discover about the user journey through your app.

“Is a brick a prototype? The answer depends on how it is used. If it is used to represent the weight and scale of some future artifact, then it certainly is..."

The concept that a brick's status as a prototype hinges on its use is intriguing. The role of the object evolves based on context. This idea underscores the dynamic nature of prototypes; they transform from mundane objects into powerful tools when we harness them to convey concepts, test ideas, or embody a vision.

“No single prototype could have represented the design of the future artifact at that time. The evolving design was too fuzzy--existing mainly as a shared concept in the minds of the designers"

Designers often deal with abstract ideas and evolving visions that resist concrete representation. Prototyping future tech and future design involves creating models or representations of innovative concepts that may not yet exist in reality. Prototypes may help bridge this gap, allowing those fuzzy concepts to materialize and become more tangible, so the focus is more on exploration and adaptation in order to transform these imaginative concepts into reality.


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