Knowledge and Processes in Design
Final rept. Dec 1987-Aug 1992
CALIFORNIA UNIV BERKELEY SCHOOL OF EDUCATION
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Our project concerned information processing characterizations of the knowledge and processes involved in design. Design is a complex ill-structured task. By their very nature, such ill-structured tasks involve processes of finding, representing, refining, and reformulating goals and constraints, generating appropriate problem spaces to work in, retrieving, integrating, and evaluating information from long-term memory or external sources, and managing complex assemblies of past and current decisions. In classic theories of problem solving in psychology, a problem solver is faced with a problem situation and develops a representation for the problem problem structuring. In classical terms, this representation may include information about the current state of the problem situation, a goal, and possible sets of problem solving actionsoperators that may be relevant to changing the current state to conform to the desired goal. A particular goal, a set of states, and a set of operators defines a problem space. Problem solving is characterized as a search process in a problem space, in which the problem solver proposes and decides upon possible operators and sequences of operators that will transform the current state into a goal state. Much of the research on the psychology of problem solving has focused on understanding the knowledge and processes involved in solving well-structured, but semantically impoverished, puzzle tasks.
- Information Science