The Survival of Design Education within the I.T. Revolution

Symposium:


Session Title:

  • Short Paper Presentations

Presentation Title:

  • The Survival of Design Education within the I.T. Revolution

Presenter(s):



Abstract:

  • 1. Industrial Exploitation
    The Design Environment has for many years proven a lucrative, but also an unpredictable field for the Computer Industry to conquer. With many vibrant companies seeing the potential in particular areas eg. Computer Aided Design only to find that the industry had been exploited by one or two major 3D producers retaining businesses in long term agreements, even though many of their ideas had been surpassed by new concepts eg. AutoCad against the rest.

    2. Inequality and Access
    In recent years, Information Technology has developed into a integral part of Design Education revolutionising the Design industry as a whole with the requirement for high level presentations and 3D graphics, Although this a great benefit for very effective education eg. CDROM and the Web, 1 have found in my early research that, it has also resulted in many undergraduates being forced into purchasing new computer equipment as well as books and graphics materials, causing a financial strain for many. The “roll on” effect of this, is a “Catch22”, a possible reduction in valuable study hours as they try to supplement there income by part time employment, with which to acquire computer equipment needed to allow the students their only access to their course work . This inequality has also resulted in several students dropping out early, with only particular financially secure types of student able to apply . There is little doubt that Information Technology has been a significant breakthrough in world of Design in the past, but if we do not want to discourage a proportion of the artist population, we in the industry must be financially careful, and help in the education of Information Technology and Design.

    3. Global Contact
    There is little doubt that the concept of Information Technology has given many people a new and revolutionary way of communicating, this has allowed the Design industry to have ‘ structured’ global contact with people, but at the moment my research suggests, that again it is the fortunate few ,who benefit . Individuals who live in a city, a telecommunications area or can afford the expensive equipment, this highlights a vast technological inadequacy between the west and some developing nations. But this could be partly resolved by a phased action plan, which involves Industry and education by the setting up of “televillages” across developing countries, funded by companies who exploit the cheap rates and employment in these areas eg. British Airways.

    4. Technological Preconceptions
    In the early 1980′ s there were many technological preconceptions regarding information technology, for example the Internet was to allow everyone eg. students easy access to information, but as business gradually integrates it is developing into The Information Society according to Daniel Bell which could be construed as synonymous with control and power for the few eg. commercial management.

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