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10.5 Desire to help others

This is a less common motivation but it shows not everyone is driven by money.

In 1991 the inventor Trevor Baylis saw a BBC documentary about the spread of HIV/AIDS in Africa. What was needed was a way of broadcasting the safe-sex message to people in areas without electricity and where batteries for a radio could cost a month's wages. Solar power wouldn't necessarily help as most people who could get to a radio listened in the evening after work. While absorbing this information he ima
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Learning outcomes

After reading this unit you should be able to:

  • appreciate diagrams as a powerful aid to thinking and acting;

  • distinguish between systems diagrams and diagrams helpful in systems work;

  • demonstrate sufficient skills to ‘read’ and ‘draw’ a wide range of diagrams, following given conventions, that help improve your understanding of a situation;

  • select diagrams suited to the needs of the situation you are investigating and the purp
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References

Bailey, R.W. (1982) Human Performance Engineering:A guide for systems designers, New Jersey, Prentice Hall.
Blackler, A., Popovic, V. and Mahar, D. (2003) ‘Intuitive use of products’, Design Studies.
Jordan, P. (2000) Designing Pleasurable Products, London, Taylor and Francis.
Norman, D. A. (1998) The Design
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13 Products for markets

Japanese car companies came to dominate in many countries in the 1980s, and this was in part attributable to their marketing research and emphasis on designing products for particular market segments. An example is the car firm Nissan, which researches national preferences for various car attributes in different countries. For instance, it is reputed to have provided its cars with softer suspensions in Germany, firmer steering in the UK, and noisier exhausts in Italy. There are other reasons
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11.1 he four pleasures

In consumerist societies, buying, using and displaying products has come to represent a certain type of pleasure. This pleasure principle has to be acknowledged in new product development and design. The designer Kenneth Grange has said that a guiding design principle for him is that a product should be ‘a pleasure to use’.

The pleasures of using a product are derived from the perceived benefits it offers to the user. Can we be more explicit in planning product benefits that are ple
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10 User research techniques: observing users

This section introduces an alternative to basing user research on yourself. This is observation of experienced and inexperienced users either in experimental or natural situations.

One way around the difficulties of basing research on oneself is to observe other people acting as users and to choose naive or different kinds of experienced users, depending on what information you want to gather.

Begin by identifying those experienced users who will be able to provide you with releva
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9.1.5 Immersion

Click on the 'View document' link below to read Jordan on 'Immersion'.

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9.1.4 Take a trip to the payphone

Click on the 'View document' link below to read 'Take a trip to the payphone'.

View document14.6KB PDF document
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9.1.3 Take the trip

Third, set out and take the trip and record actions, impressions, ideas and thoughts.


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8.1.1 Visibility

Recall that a key usability design feature identified by Donald Norman – from his analysis of using everyday objects such as doors – was visibility. An everyday object such as a door, or a control such as a button on a product should appear to be obvious about how it is used, and indeed it should perform that obvious function. For example, is it obvious how you insert a disc into a player? Is it obvious how you switch the machine on, adjust volume, and so on?


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5 Why not design for the ‘average’ user

This section explains why it can be misleading to design for an average user; a complete user population should be considered, and often it is more relevant to design for the smallest, tallest, weakest etc. Designing to include extreme users can also benefit the great majority of users.

Even when user needs are being considered in design, it is still relatively easy for the designer to fall into the trap of designing for the average user. On the face of it, it seems a good idea to desig
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3.3 Physical characteristics of natural waters

A river's physical characteristics include:

  • clarity/turbidity

  • colour

  • speed of flow/turbulence

  • odour

  • the presence of plants and macroscopic animal life.

The physical characteristics are determined by location, geology and climate of the catchment area. In turn they influence the chemical and biological characteristics of the watercourse.

The physical appearance m
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2.10 Aquifers

Groundwater is water that, after infiltrating and percolating through surface soils, flows into an aquifer, an underground water-bearing layer of porous rock. About one-third of the UK's drinking water is drawn from aquifers.

To permit economic development, an aquifer must be able to transmit large quantities of water from one point to another and therefore it must have a high permeability. The groundwater contained in aquifers is released from springs an
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2.5 Air circulation

At this stage, air circulation enters and plays a dual role. Firstly, winds transmit moisture horizontally from one location to another. In this way, moisture derived from oceanic evaporation can be transported many miles to a land mass. Secondly, convective or vertical currents arising from unequal heating or cooling can transmit moisture upwards. When it cools, some of the water vapour condenses. It is from these currents that most precipitation develops.


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Learning outcomes

After studying this unit you should be able to:

  • describe the operation and mechanisms of the hydrological cycle;

  • list and describe the major physical, chemical and biological characteristics of clean fresh water, and explain their effects on aquatic organisms;

  • explain the mode by which potable water is produced through the processes of screening, microstraining, aeration, coagulation and flocculation, sedimentation, flotation, filtration and disinf
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Introduction

This unit is from our archive and it is an adapted extract from Environmental Control and Public Health (T210) which is no longer in presentation. If you wish to study formally at The Open University, you may wish to explore the courses we offer in this curriculum area.

With
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4.2 New ways of thinking and acting: systems practice

There are a wide variety of concepts and theories relating to management and managing. This unit is centred on the ideas and techniques that we believe define systems thinking, but it also draws upon concepts and theories from other areas where these are deemed to be useful. On top of this we see systems practice as requiring a readiness to use the experiential model of learning set out by Kolb, bringing theory and practice together in a meaningful way.

It may be helpful to set out what
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3.4 Conclusion

The headings alongside each of the activities in this article were there to remind you of the three different types of learning to which you were introduced in Reading 2: memorising, understanding and doing. The three models of the learning process that I have discussed in the present reading – acquisitive, constructivist and experiential – have strengths particularly for each of these three kinds of learning.

Some learning goals require that we know information accurately and can r
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3 The acquisitive model of learning

(Please refer to Reading 3: Models of the learning process, by Mary Thorpe) What happens when we learn? I shall explore three explanations, or models, of learning which attempt to answer this question. These three models have particular strengths and weaknesses. The point is not to choose between them, but to consider which one has the ‘best fit’ for different kinds of learning.

The three models are introduced in turn, and each is followed by an activity that invites you to apply th
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Learning outcomes

After completing this unit you should be able to:

  • assess your learning styles and capabilities, using a learning file in which to record your progress;

  • describe the main definitions of learning as a process, and the role played by memorising, understanding and doing;

  • explain the three main categories of theories about learning, namely the acquisitive, constructivist and experiential models of learning;

  • discuss the main conceptions of
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