Mr. Rogers' IB Design Technology Objectives
Syllabus 1st Quarter 2nd Quarter 3rd Quarter 4th Quarter
Inv. innov. & design Design cycle  Green Design Group IV  

Topic 2 Product innovation

The basics of inventing

IB Design Technology Standards: Items directly related to the standards are shown in blue

Relevance: Most people will have one or more invention ideas during their live. This unit  illustrates how to make money from it

Lesson Plan Practice Test


Essential Question: What invention would you like to see?

Class start up

  1. Review syllabus


Assessment -- About Me


  1. Using bullet statements list your hobbies.
  2. State your career goals--one or more sentences
  3. Describe an invention you'd like to see and tell why you'd like to see it.

Deliverable: Place the completed Word file in the IB Design Technology folder of your student drive.

Work Group: Individual.


Essential Question: How long does it take to perfect an invention?

Relevance: This section shows that in any given area there are still many opportunities for inventions.

Invention and innovation

  1. Define:

  • invention: A prototype or demonstration of a concept or principle that could become a product that addresses a problem, need, or desire.

  • innovation: Successfully commercializing an invention as a product.

  1. Describe the 6 stages in the development of a generic technologies (automobile, electric lighting, electronic computing, etc.) develop

  • Concept Development  - The invention exists only as an idea in the mind of progressives and dreamers.

  • Demonstration of Basic Concept - Usually comes from scientific research. Prior to this point the invention or technology can only exist as an idea

  • Trailblazing  - Characterized by individual inventors or R&D groups demonstrating inventions which do not become innovations.

  • Product Development  - Characterized by highly expensive and/or poorly performing commercial products

  • Commercialization - Characterized by mass product and applied research aimed at lowering costs and improving performance. The performance/cost ratio vs. time curve takes on a sigmoidal shape.

  • Maturity - The performance/cost ratio stagnates. Sometimes the product is replaced.

  1. Describe the 4 stages of innovation

  • Developing - an invention is refined into a product

  • Production - the product is manufactured

  • Marketing and Sales - customers are located and served

  • Redesign - the cycle or spiral continues

  1. Discuss the importance of science and technology to invention and innovation.

  2. Discuss the relevance of design to innovation.

  3. Discuss various invention/innovation case studies:

  • automobile

  • electric lighting

  • computers

  • wireless communication

Assignment: Research the development of the electric lighting. Determine if Thomas Edison invented the light bulb.

Deliverable: Write a paper on your assignment using the general format show at right. List an approximate starting date for each stage and in a few sentences discuss the main people involved and what they did. Summarize your findings and answer whether Edison invented the light bulb.

The Development of Electric Lighting

Concept Development:  alsdjflskdflsd sdjl sld lsdf lsdflj sdfljkki sdfsd ;oeodd ;sk;k

Demonstration of Basic Concept: alsdjflskdflsd sdjl sld lsdf lsdflj sdfljkki sdfsd ;oeodd ;sk;k

Trailblazing: alsdjflskdflsd sdjl sld lsdf lsdflj sdfljkki sdfsd ;oeodd ;sk;k  

Product Development: alsdjflskdflsd sdjl sld lsdf lsdflj sdfljkki sdfsd ;oeodd ;sk;k  

Commercialization: alsdjflskdflsd sdjl sld lsdf lsdflj sdfljkki sdfsd ;oeodd ;sk;k

Maturity: alsdjflskdflsd sdjl sld lsdf lsdflj sdfljkki sdfsd ;oeodd ;sk;k

Summary and Conclusions: jsdldjflsdj dkldsjfl dfjsdljlkjlkjlj


Essential Question: What factors make an invention succeed or fail?

Relevance: This unit helps illustrate how to tell if an invention is or is not a potential money-maker.

  1. Describe the factors that motivate inventions:

  • Market Pull - Problems in search of a solution
  • Technology Push - Solutions in search of a problem
    • Demonstration of new scientific findings: Example - glowing platinum wire led to the light bulb.
    • Availability of materials or resources: example plastics, oil, wood, rubber
    1. Describe 7 reasons why inventions succeed or fail to become innovations.

    • Marketability - Potential for being sold

    • Marketing - Process of identifying and serving customers.

    • Financial Support - Investment needed for development, production, and sales.

    • Need - Ability to solve a problem or address a human need.

    • Price - manufacturing and sales costs must be low enough for product to be sold for less than the value to the customer.

    • Resistance to Change -  the QWERTY vs. the Dvorak keyboard, the metric system

    • Aversion to Risk - Computers on the space shuttle, IBM 32-bit general purpose computers (GPCs), model AP-101originally had about 424 kilobytes of magnetic core memory each, upgraded in 1990 to about 1 megabyte (see Space Shuttle history.)

    1. Explain how dominant design (implicit features recognized as essential by a majority of manufacturers and purchasers.), diffusion into the marketplace (wide acceptance and sales) are significant factors in the success of an innovation,

      dominant design examples: ballpoint pen (Biro), Apple® iPod®, Coca-Cola®.



    Essential Question: How do you make money from an invention?

    Relevance: Most people will have one or more invention ideas during their live. Many will desire to write a book. This section gives important information about how to protect inventions and written works.

    1. Describe the 4 key methods of protecting inventions and other intellectual properties.

    • Patent - U.S.A:

    • utility = 20 yrs: this is the typical patent for an invention

    • design = 14 yrs: protects a unique design feature. For example: a uniquely designed shoe.

    • plant = 17 years: a plant created by selective breading or genetic manipulation can be patented.

    • Copyright - generally creator's lifetime + 70 years, applies to creative work, Copyrighted items must be defended or they pass into the public domain (anyone can freely copy them). To defend, the owner of the copyright must issue warnings and if required take legal action against infringers.

    • created automatically

    • ability to collect damages for infringement strengthened by using © <your name> and the date.

    • copyrights can be registered--the ultimate form of protection.

    • Trademark - indefinite, applies to names or symbols used for marketing or product image, created by using ™ or SM, or strengthened by registration ®. Trademarked items must remain in commerce and be defended or they pass into the public domain. At one time aspirin was considered a trademark but is now public domain because it was not properly defended.

    • Trade Secret - possibly indefinite, applies mostly to manufacturing processes. These can be patented but patents on processes are difficult to enforce and easy to bypass.

    1. Explain what makes an object patentable  (see Lemelson-MIT Inventor's Handbook)

    • not sold

    • not published

    • not obvious

    • not known or used by others

    1. Describe provisional patents and explain their purpose

    • indicated by the words patent pending

    • purpose - establish an early effective filing date

    • applicant has 12 months to file a non-provisional application

    • the 12 months not counted against the 20 year patent life.

    • NOT examined on their merits, hence, easy to obtain

    1. Compare lone inventor, product champion, and entrepreneur roles.

    2. Give an example of incremental design (design improvements that do not represent a significant change of technology). Examples: incandescent, halogen light bulbs--all of these have high temperature glowing filaments enclosed in glass containers filled with various special gasses. By contrast, LED lights use a totally different technology to produce light.

    3. Define:

    • technophile

    • technocautious

    • technophobe

    1. discuss why people fall in these categories.

    • 1st order effects: personal gains

    • 2nd order effects: moral and ethical, security & privacy, economic circumstances.

    1. Discuss why companies resist Innovation

    • R&D expensive

    • new innovation makes old products obsolete

    • change is always disruptive

    1. Discuss corporate strategies for innovation

    • pioneering - high risk, high potential example: Apple® iPod®. A later imitator may be able to use a more up to date technology that has higher performance or lower cost. This can take over the market. In some cases, the imitator can create a standard that forces pioneers to do an expensive redesign of their product and abandon their original standard.

    • imitative- less risk but still requires major development example: Apple® iPod® knockoffs

    • hybrid - combine pioneering and imitative to gain and keep dominate market position

    • set or recreate the standard - Pioneers may try to set a product standard that, due to patents or copyrights, can only be used by their company. If it works, the pioneer will dominate the market. But, if imitators succeed in creating a different standard that's readily available to all manufactures, the pioneers can actually be put out of business. example: Beta vs. VHS video tape players.



    Case Study--Smart Phones

    Apple computer company took the smart phone market by storm with their smartly designed iPhone® and has attempted to set the standard. Their phone is only available through one cell phone service provider, the iPhone's operating system is proprietary to Apple, and Apple has maintained tight control over the development of iPhone applications.

    By contrast, Google created the Android operating system which it freely distributes as an open source program. Google has gone out of its way to make the development of applications as easy and restriction-free as possible. It's operating system has been adopted by numerous intelligent phone manufactures available through numerous cell phone service providers.

    The big question: can Apple maintain its market share in the face of competition from Android-based cell phones?


    Essential Question: How do companies market an invention and how does this differ from the way you would market an invention?

    Relevance: This section helps illustrate why the best money-making strategy for lone inventors is generally to license or sell their invention to a company. It's what you will likely want to do if you ever come up with a marketable invention.

    1. Describe company strategies use for enhancing market penetration (increasing sales for an existing product).

    • advertising

    • special pricing or sales

    • packaging or aesthetic changes. examples: Offer the product in a new variety of colors. Create a jumbo sized version (such as the 20 ounce soft drink)

    1. Describe how a company would undertake market development (finding new applications for existing products). example: a box of Arm and Hammer Baking soda used for absorbing odors in a refrigerator.

    2. Describe one example of how a company undertakes product development (the creation of new, modified or updated products aimed at existing customers.)

    3. Describe one example of diversification (both the development of new products and new customers.)

    4. Define market sector (categories the company is aiming to serve) and market segmentation (dividing a market into smaller segments where the customers are similar).

    5. Outline two ways in which markets may be segmented.

    6. Discuss an example of a robust design that evolved into a product family (A group of similar products usually with many common parts and assemblies).


    • Chevy Volt and Chevy Cruse. These use a common engine

    • Coke, Diet Coke, Vanilla Coke, and Cherry Coke. These use the same basic formula and packaging.


    Summative Assessment: Test Objectives 1-25

    Note: Items highlighted in this color are directly related to the 2009 IB Syllabus which is the set of standards for the class. In many cases the wording has been altered, but every attempt has been made to preserve the meaning. These objective, however, should not be considered a substitute for the actual syllabus.
    Copyright © TK Rogers 2009-2010