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Changing Connections. The role of connections in products between traditional and new technologies

Kloeckl, Kristian, Chiapponi, Medardo (revisor), (2008) Changing Connections. The role of connections in products between traditional and new technologies. PhD thesis, Università Iuav di Venezia.

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Abstract

It is the connections between parts and elements that form the products and product systems that surround us. Despite the more common attention towards the parts, it is increasingly the way in which all these parts are connected, the modality and characteristics of these links that determines to a large extent the overall quality of a product. In fact, looking closely, there is an extraordinarily rich variety of ways in which parts and objects can be joined and which have reached high degrees of maturity. Now, how do recent technological innovations, in fields such as digital technologies, sensor systems, wireless data transmission or nanotechnologies, open up new perspectives for the design of connections that compose products? How can industrial design make the best use of these technologies in connecting parts and products to form meaningful wholes for today's requirements? 
This research investigates how the analysis of traditional product connections can contribute to the design of new forms of joining in which the potential of new technologies can be best harnessed. A first methodological step has been to single out factors which assume relevance both in traditional connections as well as novel typologies that are viable on the basis of recent technology developments. This approach has proven a fruitful strategy to reveal and understand change, describing the role each of six factors plays in traditional and existing connection types and subsequently developing them into thematic chapters of this thesis which thus relate to: responsiveness, compatibility, articulation, seamlessness, reversibility and scale. 
The aspects of connections related to these factors are then analyzed, in reference to the range of product connections contained within four classes of joining typologies that have been established around increasing levels of interaction between material and immaterial elements such as digital information and which are physical connections, connecting digital information to objects, connecting objects through digital information exchange, and patterns of connections. 
Having identified these basic and fundamental factors and classes of reference it is shown how the role of these factors changes in light of new technologies linked to how parts and objects are joined. Furthermore it is through the analysis of traditional connections that weaknesses of new ways of joining are identified and approaches to address these are formulated, disclosing at best the potential of new technologies and suggesting new horizons for the design of connections.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords:connections, design, phd, connessioni
Subjects:Area 08 - Ingegneria civile e Architettura > ICAR/13 Disegno industriale
Divisions:Dottorati, Master, corsi post-laurea > Scuola di dottorato > Scienze del design
ID Code:103
Deposited By:Kristian Kloeckl
Deposited On:26 May 2009 09:12
Last Modified:26 May 2009 09:12

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