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Prototyping Is Critical for New Product Development

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LEO F
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Additonal clarity on most critical.
LEO F   7/12/2013 6:34:26 PM
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Hello all and thanks Max for replying to the comments.

These are very good comments and I can see many questioning if this business function is really "most critical".   I would probably agree that the comment might NOT be a "most critical" business function across all industries.

 However, my background is the RF industry and I do believe that "most critical" is an accurate statement. 

This space over the last several years can be compared to the personal computer evolution.   The smart phone / tablet market has changed so rapidly that a single missed opportunity can sink your stock in a day. 

Why I still hold this opinion is that these products, as well as market timing, is determined by the likes of Samsung, Nokia, Apple, Huawei, et al.   The performance specifications, package type and footprint are extremely difficult to achieve and typically will require several design spins.   All eyes and ears are waiting for new results out of these prototype lines and ready to act.

Leo

Duane Benson
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Re: Prototyping Is Critical for New Product Development
Duane Benson   7/12/2013 6:24:20 PM
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Max - re: "YES!!! I can't tell you how many GUIs I've used that were obviously created by someone who had no clue as to what the end user did or how they did it"

Scott Adams / Dilbert coined the phrase "user interface poisoning." Well, maybe he didn't coin it, but that's where I saw it first.

Max The Magnificent
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Re: "Most" critical?
Max The Magnificent   7/12/2013 3:59:58 PM
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@Tom: I do have some doubts that any part of a product development process can be labeled the most critical stage...

Well, I can't argue with you there -- every stage is critical as far as that goes -- but remember that it's not I who said it was the "most critical" -- it was the guy who wrote to me -- Leo Sennott -- so I think we will have to bring him into the converstaion ... I shall "ping" him now...

Max The Magnificent
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Re: Prototyping Is Critical for New Product Development
Max The Magnificent   7/12/2013 3:56:48 PM
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@DocDivakar: Wearing my software developer hat, one of the first things I typically did was to prototype the GUI to get early feedback from propsective users...

YES!!! I can't tell you how many GUIs I've used that were obviously created by someone who had no clue as to what the end user did or how they did it -- and who obviously had no desire to find out.

By comparison, it's always a pleasure to use a well-designed GUI

Tom Murphy
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Re: "Most" critical?
Tom Murphy   7/12/2013 3:54:34 PM
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Not so bitter, Max! And i should know better than to raise the question at a site populated by electrical designers, but I do have some doubts that any part of a product development process can be labeled the most critical stage.  Sounds like a good poll question for the community!

Max The Magnificent
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Re: "Most" critical?
Max The Magnificent   7/12/2013 3:52:18 PM
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@Tom: I'm not sure prototyping is THE most important factor anymore.

It may not be THE most important factor, but that doesnt mean it's not crtitcal :-)

Max The Magnificent
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Re: "Most" critical?
Max The Magnificent   7/12/2013 3:50:27 PM
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@Tom: You gave us a lot to chew on there, but I'm not sure I like the taste.

A bitter pill to swallow? :-)

docdivakar
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Re: Prototyping Is Critical for New Product Development
docdivakar   7/12/2013 3:22:34 PM
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I do agree that prototyping is critical, whether one is working on hardware, software or both. Wearing my software developer hat, one of the first things I typically did was to prototype the GUI to get early feedback from propsective users (there are many tools available or this, eg., Balsamic).

These days there are plenty of options for going beyond bread-boarding to get a product in hand that almost looks like the final one! 3D printers (stereolithography prototyping machines for those you more technical!) have enabled the modern day startups that can produce almost functioning & enviable proto's.

The most value I get out of protos are feedbacks on problems in the design that often escape brainstorming on a white board.

MP Divakar

Tom Murphy
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"Most" critical?
Tom Murphy   7/12/2013 12:47:14 PM
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Max: You gave us a lot to chew on there, but I'm not sure I like the taste.  True, the economics of a faster supply chain, fast-evolving technology, fickle consumer tastes and more contribute to the design of new products, and I'm not sure prototyping is THE most important factor anymore.  It's important, don't get me wrong.  I believe in prototypes, QA, analysis, focus groups and all the conventional steps in designing products.  Isn't it more like a step in staircase now, rather than the most important step?

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