Design Thinking – Strategic Making Process to Solve Problems

Throughout my entire life, I never considered myself an artistic person. As a child, I did go through a phase where I would try to draw many book covers. However, I quickly realized I wasn’t any good. To this day, I have trouble with creating any sort of artistic design. Example A, our team’s logo.

I have friends who I can call and tell them what I what, and they can come up with multiple mock-ups within a short period of time. During this past week’s class session, Design for America came to give us a workshop in design thinking and help us solve real world problems. I think my favorite part of the workshop was the exercises they had for us to get us thinking creatively. In addition, this workshop made me realize the importance of having a diverse group of members. With a diverse group of members, we can all bring different ideas to the table, which can then be combined to solve the problem, which is exactly what happen when we were brainstorming ideas for how to help people with Parkinson’s disease.

Design thinking is a strategy-making process that examines human behavior in order to avoid collecting backward looking data and making risky bets on instinct, rather than evidence. In the article Design Thinking by Tim Brown, gives a great example of thinking outside the box. Shimano, a Japanese cycling company, hired IDEO, a design and consulting firm, to help them penetrate a market they haven’t been able to reach. They realized that this market consisted of people who enjoyed riding bikes during their teenage years but have now stopped because of high cost, dangerous roads, and intimidation. With IDEO’s help, Shimano was able to produce a coasting bike, a bike that took the complexity of a road bike and allowed users to just hop on and ride.

Overall, I’m looking forward to learning Fusion tomorrow. I have not worked with Fusion 360, however, I do have experience with Inventor. From the quick research I just did, there are many things in common. I hope that my experience with Inventor helps me learn Fusion 360 faster.


Interesting 3D Printing Articles

India’s first 3D Indigenous Jet Engine

I’m excited to see how 3D printing will revolutionize the aviation industry. The article states that by 3D printing the jet engine, it has saved them nearly 40% of the cost and about 10 months in preparing and assembly the jet engine. Not sure if those 10 months are accounted for in the savings but if they aren’t that means they are saving even more money! Click here to read more about this indigenous jet engine.


 I know someone in our Facebook page shared a video of a 3D skin printer but I wanted to share this article that explains in detail how that works. I personally believe that 3D printing will take off again because of the application of a 3D printer in the medical field. In my first reflection post, I talked about a Mexican startup company that is 3D printing personalized “breathable” cast. I just believe there is much more potential in the medical field because of the impact it can have on many lives.

Image of 3D skin printer

Image of 3D printed cast

4 thoughts on “Design Thinking – Strategic Making Process to Solve Problems

  1. Hi jorge,

    Loved reading about your experience with Design Thinking! I agree that the activity about coming up with as many mockups as possible in a short amount of time was the best section of the workshop. I absolutely love that part of design thinking in that we get to be iterative and creative in such a short period of time.

    Also, I love your extra articles that you left at the end covering the capabilities of 3D printing for other countries outside of the US. There really is an opportunity here for 3D printing to help developing communities. Would love to hear what ideas you have for using 3D printers in less developed communities.


  2. Hi Jorge,

    I really enjoyed your blog post. Thankfully, I came into our class as somewhat of a design focused person, and luckily if I don’t come up with a great design, one of my team members is also amazing at design. I very much agree that diversity brings so many ideas to the table, many that I would never have thought off on my own. I noticed this in my group as well. Experience also comes into play when in groups. Luckily you were able to know something similar to Fusion 360, while I struggled using the tool last night. Thankfully, I am not alone and my group can work together to learn.

    I really enjoyed your articles and I too am so fascinated with the medical applications of 3D printing. Here’s an article I read recently about using 3D printing for medical applications in space!

  3. Hey,

    I too never considered myself to be an artistic person, but I feel that our definition of being artistic might change now after taking this class. Implementing and targeting strategic markets is an essential part of the Design thinking process as justified by Shimano and IDEO. 3-D Printed jet engines could revolutionize the industry and maybe even make planes much more safer, you should check out the 3-D Metal printing startup company which is now getting funded from BMW, I think that is going to be the next big thing.

  4. Hi Jorge,
    I really enjoyed the outside research that you provided in this article!
    I personally am fascinated by the medical implications of 3D printing, and really enjoyed reading your article about the invention of the flexible cast. I completely agree with your point that focusing on 3D innovation in this field is a smart move, as there is the opportunity to create a huge impact globally. I believe that bioprinting, as explained in the Science Alert article below, is going to revolutionize health care and make operations that are currently impossible a feasible option. This particular article describes how scientists are using live cells in order to create “made-to-order” body parts for patients. This idea is totally fascinating, as we have been trying for decades to develop solutions for missing or disabled body parts. The idea that you could essentially “print” a new body part from your own cells seems other-wordly, yet is closer to realization than ever.

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