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A note on the nature of creativity in engineering: implications for supporting system design
Rouse W. Information Processing and Management: an International Journal22 (4):279-285,1986.Type:Article
Date Reviewed: Mar 1 1987

The author uses an uncritical review of the psychology literature on creativity to motivate a few rather dubious ideas on computer-based support systems for designers. These include providing access to information across disciplines, giving access to information across individuals, supporting multiple modes of thinking, supporting the pursuit of multiple solutions, and providing a sense of ownership. However, the paper contains no discussion beyond the level of what appears here. For example, it does not even allude to the fact that there are significant technical issues in accessing different forms of knowledge in distinct databases or manipulating different modalities such as geometry and semantic networks. In the same way, simplistic statements are made about the sociology of the environment and the individual (e.g., that the organization is demonstrably supportive and that acceptance of managerial roles not be excessive), without mention of the hybrid role of most CAD/CAM/CAE systems as aids to the design process and as instruments for the official checking of designs and releasing products to manufacturing. The paper is clearly written and does fulfill its stated purpose, but it does not demonstrate any creativity or technical depth.

Reviewer:  Jeanine Meyer Review #: CR111221
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