Going Meta: Design Space and Evaluation Space in Software Design

Nickerson, J.V. and Yu, L. Going Meta: Design Space and Evaluation Space in Software Design, Petre, M. and van der Hoek, A. (eds.). Software Designers in Action, CRC Press, 2012

34 Pages Posted: 16 Sep 2012

See all articles by Jeffrey V. Nickerson

Jeffrey V. Nickerson

Stevens Institute of Technology - School of Business

Lixiu Yu

Carnegie Mellon University

Date Written: Septembe 2012

Abstract

Design is an exploratory activity, and there are many ways to get lost or stuck. There is no pre-existing map – the map is built through the design process. We first discuss design space - the space of possible choices in creating something new - and how it can be visualized. We then discuss evaluation space - the space that measures a particular design along different criteria - and how it can be visualized. Just as in any form of exploring, it is difficult to take stock, to go meta and consider the situation from a different level of abstraction - that is, to engage in metacognition. We argue this is an essential part of any design process. A normative model of design conversation is developed and compared to what happens in a particular professional software design conversation.

Keywords: Design space, Evaluation space, metacognition, design conversation, diagram

JEL Classification: O31

Suggested Citation

Nickerson, Jeffrey V. and Yu, Lixiu, Going Meta: Design Space and Evaluation Space in Software Design (Septembe 2012). Nickerson, J.V. and Yu, L. Going Meta: Design Space and Evaluation Space in Software Design, Petre, M. and van der Hoek, A. (eds.). Software Designers in Action, CRC Press, 2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2147158

Jeffrey V. Nickerson (Contact Author)

Stevens Institute of Technology - School of Business ( email )

Hoboken, NJ 07030
United States

Lixiu Yu

Carnegie Mellon University ( email )

Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890
United States

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