IxD MDES
STUDENT PREP FOR SUMMER

We are really excited you will be joining the Interaction Design program late this Summer. In preparation, we have some suggestions, resources and inspiration so you can ready yourself for the Fall. You all bring amazing skills in many different ways from different backgrounds.

 

Because each student is coming to the class with a diverse skill set, you may already have experience with the tools we will use but, if you do not, it is important that you take advantage of the Summer time to spend some time to get a head-start for the upcoming year.
 

In addition to design basics, like tools, we are also including some readings, watchings and doings so we can all hit the ground running.

 

Here are the sections for your prep:

      BASIC EQUIPMENT

      DESIGN FUNDAMENTALS

      DESIGN THINKING AND DOING

      TECHNOLOGY THINKING AND DOING

 

BASIC EQUIPMENT

Here is what you’ll need at a minimum to get started.

 

LAPTOP

Every student will need to have a laptop. See this page for details and discounts (there is a small Apple discount and huge discount for Adobe).


SOFTWARE

CCA students are eligible to get radically reduced subscriptions to Adobe Creative Cloud (Photoshop and Illustrator).  User your CCA email to login to this site here: http://www.journeyed.com/cca

In addition to Adobe CC, you will also need Sketch http://bohemiancoding.com/sketch/
and Apple Keynote as basics. You will get access to Google Docs as part of your CCA account (it is a google account).

 

VIDEO/PHOTOGRAPHY

Creating videos and taking photos are great skill to cultivate. You will be taking photos of your work, documenting research and creating visual elements for presentations.  We recommend getting used to taking photos and video with your phone and a DSLR or small video recorder if you already have one.  Creating videos with iMovie or other simple video creation tools will also be a key skill to have in the program. If you haven’t done this, make some movies this summer.


ESSENTIAL SUPPLIES

Below is the list the essentials in your design kit.  These are the things we will assume you have with you at every class, these things will help you hold charrettes and brainstorms with your teammates.

 

  • Cache of post-its in a variety of colors/sizes (for collaborative doing design anywhere)

  • Sharpie, several weights, light, medium, chisel (You will overtime discover your favorite pens, "twin-tip" Sharpies will almost certainly be among them, in addition, some folks also swear by Staedtler triplus colored pen set)

  • Highlighters in a few colors

  • A few grey Prismacolor or Copic chisel/fine dual-tip grey markers

  • Drawing pencil/eraser

  • Ruler/straight edge

  • Drafting dots (to hang and display your amazing work)

  • Camera (to capture whatever inspires you, hi-res phone works fine most of the time)

  • Loose paper for drawing (grab from a recycle bin or keep a pad you can tear off).

  • Correction Tape

  • 5X8 Index cards (Unruled) - Great for paper prototyping


SKETCHBOOK

If you don’t already, start a sketchbook that you carry with you everywhere.  
Big is good, unless it keeps you from carrying it, then go small. If you are already a designer, you may already do this. If you are not, it is even more important. Start looking for things that interest you and capture them in your sketchbook. Maybe a sign or a place, sit down and sketch, or take a picture and sketch later.. or paste in for collage, or paste the picture in.
It is important that it is physical and you fill it with things you love, or otherwise feel strongly about - they inspire you - or you want to change.

Design Fundamentals
If you are new to design school (or feeling a little rusty) take a look through this section, there may be a few things that seem completely new. Most of you are coming from Graphic Design, Industrial Design and Architecture and there are a few of you coming from engineering and other non-studio disciplines, or fine art. The cross from engineering is often a simply a mindset shift and focus on hand skills.

Moving from liberal arts often requires hand-eye practice and seeing the world more visually.  If making skills seem completely new, please immerse yourself this summer, building hand/eye skills so you are ready to make with us this Fall. If you are coming from fine art, the shift is to a practice that is more about addressing needs and solving problems and design tends to be highly collaborative, as opposed to individual.

 

DRAWING AND SKETCHING

If you aren’t comfortable with sketching, don’t worry, just practice. Here are resources to help you.

COURSES
(community college or extension)
Consider a course on drawing fundamentals, or even a figure drawing class (which are always fun). If you are not in SF, look for a local school.

CCA offers Summer classes in Graphic Design and Website building
https://www.cca.edu/academics/summer/courses/julyaugust-6-week-session

City College offers Basic Design and Drawing classes that start mid-June
https://www.ccsf.edu/Schedule/Summer/art.shtml#Drawing_Family

 

HAND-EYE SKILLS BOOKS

Drawing for Product Designers
http://www.laurenceking.com/en/category/design/drawing-for-product-designers-1/

http://www.amazon.com/Drawing-Product-Designers-Portfolio-Skills/dp/1856697436

Creative Workshop, David Sherwin (N.B. David is a founding teacher of CCA IxD)
http://www.amazon.com/Creative-Workshop-Challenges-Sharpen-Design/dp/1600617972/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1432847723&sr=1-1&keywords=Creative+Workshop

A number of pages are available on Amazon also David has a website for the book.

Visual Design Essentials
Thinking with Type
Ellen Lupton
http://www.amazon.com/Thinking-Type-2nd-revised-expanded/dp/1568989695
 

DIGITAL TOOLS

You will need to get up to speed on basic tools skills - we won’t teach these in the program, they are assumed.

 

Bohemian Sketch  

This is the new tool “everybody” is using now. It is great for screen-based work. 
http://bohemiancoding.com/sketch/learn/
You can get a 50 discount with your CCA student ID here at Bohemian's Education Site

 

ADOBE

However, you still need to learn these basic tools. Consider also InDesign for documents.

 

Apple Keynote

This is the go-to tools for presentations, learn it. Also it is really useful for medium-fidelity prototyping. Check out the “Magic Move”.
http://www.lynda.com/iWork-tutorials/Keynote-6-Essential-Training/157029-2.html?srchtrk=index:1%0Alinktypeid:2%0Aq:keynote%0Apage:1%0As:relevance%0Asa:true%0Aproducttypeid:2

Check this out to learn about basics around interactive prototyping with Keynote.

http://keynotopia.com/guides/

 

PUSHING FURTHER

We recommend you become versed in basic html/css to assist your understanding of how web technology works and enable you to create prototypes during the year. Play around with it this summer.

 

Basic
HTML/CSS
http://www.codecademy.com/tracks/web

Advanced

Arduino processing
http://www.lynda.com/Arduino-tutorials/Up-Running-Arduino/162273-2.html?srchtrk=index:1%0Alinktypeid:2%0Aq:arduino%0Apage:1%0As:relevance%0Asa:true%0Aproducttypeid:2
 

Quartz Composer

This is a super powerful tool, developed by Apple to prototype Apple products. Now most folks (Google, facebook, IDEO) use this for prototypes. Many extensions have been developed. e.g. Avocado (by CCA faculty Marco)
https://hackdesign.org/lessons/40
http://qcdesigners.com/index.php/forums/topic/2/new-to-quartz-composer-start-he
https://developer.apple.com/xcode/downloads/

Avocado (super advanced)

http://avocado.ideo.com/


 

READINGS | SOCIAL LAB

Here are some of the basics of how we will work in the Social Lab. Please be sure to read and familiarize yourself with the basics. We have a year to implement this, let’s start now!


Leading from the Emerging Future
Otto Scharmer (chapter one)

This helps frame why the need for a social lab, it succinctly outlines the key global challenges and causes. It is one chapter and quick and a little profound.
http://www.amazon.com/Leading-Emerging-Future-Ego-System-Eco-System/dp/1605099260/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1432847669&sr=1-1&keywords=Leading+from+the+Emerging+Future


Social Labs Revolution

Zaid Hassan

Zaid will be helping us this coming year to set up our social lab and steer us in the most promising directions.
http://www.amazon.com/Social-Labs-Revolution-Approach-Challenges/dp/1626560730/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1432847648&sr=1-1&keywords=Social+lab+revolution

Field Book: http://social-labs.org/fieldbook/

Website: http://social-labs.org/

 

Follow the public discussion:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/sociallabs/