Thursday, February 4, 2021

Invention and Philosophy


Science seeks to investigate the sentient and identify truths within that realm. Although making, and design in general, seek to identify that which works, we run our hand along the guiderail of science so the philosophies of science are a relevant framework for makers. For example, exploring designs that might parallel those considered outside "normal science" or endanger an intellectual ecology can lead to resistance within the engineering and design communities.

Makers are comfortable with abductive reasoning but tap into positivism with alacrity. Moreover, nonmechanistic elements of design and building are a part of the maker movement. This includes creating things that are visually appealing, connected with a material culture, and communicate values. The process of building can also be an expression of filial piety or social dynamics and can be infused with improvised and planned agents. The joy of the designing and building process can be of greater importance than the object’s utility – the world of hands-on design teaches the heroics of the nail gun, the intimacy of the soldering iron, the magic of casting, and the crunching sound of failure. Makers know the dance of deep thinking and wonderful journeys.

From: Ask, T. E. (2016). Philosophical Foundations of the Maker Movement. Paper presented at the The Fourth International Conference on Design Creativity, Atlanta, GA. 

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