The understanding of the problems and latent needs in the users is one of the biggest challenges for a designer. Being able to identify promptly when one artifact exceeds the previous ones and looks to the future is an incredible competitive advantage. Identifying these moments isn’t a simple, task but luckily, we have a database of information that is often overlooked: the history.
The history of a need tells us how the objects have adapted in time to satisfy it and give us a set of information that must be decoded to understand how they could further evolve. Analyzing the dynamics of a need allows us to anticipates the developments and provide prefigurative answers.
Designing innovative products is possible thanks to the application of skills acquired from the historiographic analysis; the data obtained can range from:
- The introduction of new technologies from other areas;
- The reorganization of the parts to their simplification;
- The experimentation of innovative materials to introduction of new typoligies.
The objects are a mirror of time. Learning to understand them is the first step to be able to design new ones. Here is an example of the process related to the measurement of time. This exercise has allowed us to clarify the main evolutionary stages to accurately identify the emerging trends.