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Apr 12 2016

The Role of Form in Engineering Design – The Representation, Generation, and Preference of Shape

MIE Department Seminar

April 12, 2016

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM


1043 ERF


Chicago, IL 60607

The Role of Form in Engineering Design - The Representation, Generation, and Preference of Shape

Jonathan Cagan, PhD.

Professor in Mechanical Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University

Abstract: Engineers often have the mantra that form follows function. But does it really? Or at least should it? In this talk we explore the representation, generation and preference of shape. Parametric shape grammars enable shape generation based on function, style or brand through an emergent production system. Stochastic optimization and agent-based approaches manipulate the shape to achieve optimal forms. Finally, analytical approaches to capture form preference from consumers result in a unique driver for automatic design generation. A variety of examples and applications will demonstrate the importance of form generation within the engineering design process, including social choice decisions.

Bio: Jonathan Cagan, Ph.D., P.E., is the George Tallman and Florence Barrett Ladd Professor in Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering, at Carnegie Mellon University, with appointment in the School of Design. Dr. Cagan serves as the Associate Dean for Strategic Initiatives for the Engineering College at CMU. Prof. Cagan is an expert in product development and innovation methods for early stage product development. His research focuses on design cognition, computation and practice. Both his design methods and computer-based design research have been applied in a variety of industries. He is the co- author of three books: Creating Breakthrough Products, Built to Love and The Design of Things to Come. Prof. Cagan teaches new product development at Carnegie Mellon and where he co- directs the Integrated Innovation Institute and Master of Integrated Innovation for Products and Services, and serves as the Head for the MS in Software Management program. He is a Fellow of ASME.


Michael Scott

Date posted

Oct 14, 2021

Date updated

Oct 14, 2021