Mitchell Sava

FEI Conference Day 2: From Thinking to Making

Day 2 at the Front End of Innovation Conference built on the key theme from day 1: Humanizing the Internet of Things and getting things in the hands of users. Our Makeshop team continued our design study from day 1 – exploring how we move from things to people – in an interactive workshop session today. We invited attendees to answer a simple, but deceptively revealing, question: “What are the devices or services that help you strengthen relationships?”  

Participants built on yesterday’s insights by providing views on the diversity of relationships, different levels of intimacy, and methods of creating or strengthening connections in a contextually appropriate way. 


The design study process was further magnified in our session. Rather than deliver a conventional presentation or panel, we decided instead to harness the collective capacity of our packed room. We quickly put people to work in an exercise to design a new service in which objects could “conspire” to make the user’s life better.

In 30 very quick minutes, we generated hundreds of insights and dozens of ideas for new services. More importantly, we (hopefully) also demonstrated the power of putting the human at the center of the innovation process, grounding the teams’ ideas in an understanding of the people we wish to help and their specific needs and desires. (Our exploration of the bed revealed some very particular desires indeed!)


We will continue this design study with participants on day 3, taking many of the insights and ideas which emerged from the session and synthesizing and translating them into new service concepts. Which, of course, we’ll test, in a human-centered way.

Check out the video from day 2 for a quick glimpse into the day!

Mitchell Sava

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