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Communicating Ideas

Divergent Thinking Style Drawings

1.3.1 Define freehand drawing.

The spontaneous representation of ideas on paper without the use of technical aids.

Expert Village has a step-by-step tutorial for freehand and rendering.

1.3.2 Describe the importance of annotating freehand drawings.

Annotations explain the thinking behind the visual image represented by the drawing. They allow the designer to consider the implications of the ideas for further development.
Annotated drawings are an alternative form of expression of ideas that allows one to indicate links between the ideas.

1.3.3 Explain the purpose of two- and three-dimensional (2D and 3D) freehand drawings.

Designers use a range of freehand drawings in the early stages of developing ideas to explore shape and form (3D) and constructional details (2D).

This is a cool website with Sketch-a-day

2D freehand Annotated Freehand Sketch-a-day

Convergent Thinking Style Drawings

1.3.4 Define orthographic drawing.

A series of flat views of an object showing it exactly as it is in shape and size.

How to do orthographic drawings and here

1.3.5 Explain the purpose of an orthographic drawing.

An orthographic drawing shows details and dimensions and can be used as a production drawing.
  • Clock project. Note also the parts list as well.

1.3.6 Identify the stage of the design process where orthographic drawings are relevant.

Orthographic drawings are produced at the final solution stage and are used as working drawings in the realization stage.

1.3.7 Define isometric drawing.

A 3D representation of an object drawn with the horizontal plane at 30 to the vertical plane.

1.3.8 Explain the purpose of an isometric drawing.

An isometric drawing depicts the proposed solution in 3D showing shape and form.

1.3.9 Define exploded isometric drawing.

An isometric drawing of an object with more than one component that depicts how the parts of assemblies fit together.

1.3.10 Explain the purpose of an exploded isometric drawing.

The drawing is exploded to show component parts of a product and/or the sequence of assembly.

1.3.11 Define perspective drawing.

A 3D drawing that realistically represents an object by utilizing foreshortening and vanishing points (usually imaginary ones).

1.3.12 Explain the purpose of perspective drawing.

Compare perspective drawings with isometric drawings. Perspective drawings take into account spatial arrangements, for example, foreshortening, while isometric drawings are constructed to a set angle.

1.3.13 Define computer-aided design (CAD) and computer modelling.

The use of computers to aid the design process.

1.3.14 Outline two advantages and two disadvantages of using CAD instead of traditional drawing methods.

Consider the skills required, storage, complexity and styles of the drawings, interfacing with other aspects of information and communication technology (ICT), time, cost and the purpose of the drawings.
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1.3.15 Define algorithm.

A sequence of instructions to describe a set of actions.

1.3.16 Describe how an algorithm can be used to communicate a process.

For example, consider the operation of a lift. Correct sequencing is important, with input, process and feedback.

1: Produce an algorithm for making sandwich with the following: Two slices of frozen bread, tomato, butter, cheese and a knife.
1a: Do the sandwich algorithm in a flow chart.

2: Develop an algorithm for a parking lot that indicates to the driver if the car-park is full or there is space available.
2a: Do the car-park algorithm in a flow chart.

1.3.17 Define flow chart.

A schematic representation of a process.

1.3.18 Draw a simple flow chart using symbols.

Flowchart Symbols in a flow chart

1.3.19 Describe how a flow chart can be used to communicate a process.

  • A process is not a product that can be felt
  • It represent actions that need to be undertaken

1.3.20 Explain the differences between flow charts and algorithms.

Essentially an algorithm is a ordered list of instructions that need to be followed in an order in to complete a process or task. They can be pictorially represented in flowcharts.

Flowcharts are are a diagrams of a sequence of operations that a linked in some manner.

1.3.21 Describe models as representations of reality and representing selected features of a design.

  • models are meant to look, or feel (smell) like the real thing.
  • represent selected features of a design

1.3.22 Describe a range of physical models.

Consider scale model, clay model and prototype. Refer to a range of modelling materials, for example, clay, card, foam, board, balsa and wood.
  • Scale Model - a representation of an object that is smaller or larger than the actual size of the object.
  • Clay model - a model of an object made out of clay.
  • Prototype - first or preliminary model of something ... can be a working model.
Clay Model Prototype

1.3.23 Explain the purpose of the various models described in 1.3.22.

  • A scale model can serve several purposes, such as providing a general feel for what the object will actually look like in 3D. A scale model could also be used to magnify a small product that needs to be thoroughly examined, such as a micro chip.
  • A clay model will provide a real sense of a certain aspect of the final design, such as the body of the car.
  • A prototype is a working model of a certain product, this helps the designer realize the limitations and how he can go about solving them.

1.3.24 Define mathematical model.

A model using mathematical symbols that can be manipulated numerically.

For example ...

  • To determine the effort required to lift a load of soil or rocks.
  • Once determined we can calculate the appropriate length of the wheelbarrow arms (levers).

1.3.25 Describe the role of spreadsheet software in the development of mathematical models.

1.3.26 Outline the advantages and disadvantages of graphical, physical and mathematical models.

Advantages Disadvantages
Graphical * Changes can be made quickly and easily.
* Various views can be generated.
* requires special knowledge and skills
* high initial cost
Physical * Easily understandable * May not be quite representative of the real thing
* possibly cannot use same materials
* cost
* Time consuming
Mathematical * Various scenarios can be tested easily and quickly
* Predictions can be made
* Cost affective
* Symbolic representation
* Not easily understandable
* requires special knowledge and skills

1.3.27 Describe three advantages of using models as part of the design process.

Communication with clients, communication with team members, and ability to manipulate ideas better than with drawings.

1.3.28 Describe three limitations of the use of models in the design process.

Designers can easily make assumptions about how accurately a model represents reality: it may not work like the final product or be made of the same material.


Bulleted list and italicised paragraphs are excerpted from Design Technology: guide. Cardiff Wales, UK: International Baccalaureate Organization, 2007.

Images are clickable links to its location.

Advanced Design and Technology, 3rd Ed, 2000 Eddie Norman, Jay Cubitt, Syd Urry & Mike Whittaker

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Page last modified on October 02, 2012, at 03:37 AM