Mining Process Heuristics from Designer Action Data via Hidden Markov Models

McComb, C., Cagan, J., and Kotovsky, K. 2017, Journal of Mechanical Design Configuration design problems, characterized by the assembly of components into a final desired solution, are common in engineering design. Various theoretical approaches have been offered for...

Heterogeneous Simulated Annealing Teams: An Optimizing Search Algorithm Inspired by Engineering Design Teams

McComb, C., Cagan, J., and Kotovsky, K. 2015, International Conference on Engineering Design Although insights uncovered by design cognition are often utilized to develop the methods used by human designers, using such insights to inform computational methodologies...

Validating a Tool for Predicting Problem-Specific Optimized Team Characteristics

McComb, C., Cagan, J., and Kotovsky, K 2017, ASME IDETC – Design Theory and Methodology Conference The performance of a team is highly dependent on how the team is structured, how individuals in the team communicate with one another, and the properties exhibited...

Data on the Configuration Design of Internet-Connected Home Cooling Systems by Engineering Students

McComb, C., Cagan, J., and Kotovsky, K. 2017, Data in Brief This experiment was carried out to record the step-by-step actions that humans take in solving a configuration design problem, either in small teams or individually. Specifically, study participants were...

Quantitative Comparison of High- and Low-Performing Teams in a Design Task Subject to Drastic Changes

McComb, C., Cagan, J., and Kotovsky, K. 2014, ASME IDETC – Design Theory and Methodology Conference Many design tasks are subject to changes in goals or constraints. For instance, a client might modify specifications after design has commenced, or a competitor...

Human system can mean many different things. In this lab, we look at it in three different ways:

Systems of Humans

  • Can we build accurate simulations of problem-solving teams?
  • How can be make organizations more efficient and effective?

Systems for Humans

  • In what way can intelligent tools boost human performance?
  • Can intelligent design tools be developed that mimic expert behavior?

Systems + Humans

  • What are the implications of merging humans and machines as equal partners?
  • What does an intelligent algorithm need to truly contribute?

Our research interests span the entire spectrum of human systems. Some examples of our research include discovering how to effectively manage and organize design teams and multi-team organization, designing computational algorithms that mirror human learning patterns, and developing new methods for rapidly analyzing renewable energy technology. If research like this sounds interesting to you, please take a look at our open positions.