MD&M West 2020: Key Takeaways in Industrial Design & Human Factors Engineering

Check out these three major insights that the Goddard team took away from the conference sessions at MD&M West 2020.
By Sarah Faulkner – Director of Marketing, Goddard

3 Key Takeaways From MD&M West 2020 Conference

1. Data, data, data

One session that really caught our eye as product developers was a discussion about “sensor fusion”. This topic stems from a growing need in medical device development to integrate data from an array of sensors, allowing users and healthcare providers to take a more holistic look at healthcare.

In the era of big data, data can present itself in a range of forms (discrete, time series, audio, video, images, etc.) and challenges abound – from cleaning the data to validating algorithms. But the opportunity, for both patients and businesses, is enormous.

Industry verticals that could most benefit from “sensor fusion”, according to this session, include eldercare, pediatrics, sports medicine, and chronic health.

Related Article: Phase Zero: The First and Most Important Step in a Product Development Plan

2. It’s all about the user

Having built a wide range of devices over the past 20 years, we know how important it is to understand your intended user. A number of sessions at this year’s MD&M West conference touched on the subject of user-centered design and product development.

We discussed techniques to translate user needs into formal industrial design requirements, which can help to create a product that both satisfies the end-user and meets regulatory standards. And while we’re on the subject of user needs – one session at MD&M West underscored that it’s not just about meeting a user’s obvious needs; it’s about understanding and digging into unspoken needs, too.

Human factors engineering was not far from our minds during these discussions. Ultimately, to create a great product you need to understand the environment that will shape and inform the interaction between a product and its user.

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3. Embrace bearable discomfort

We closed the conference with a keynote from inventor Sally Dominguez, who encouraged us to become comfortable with not always knowing the path forward. She proposed that true innovation comes when you can find opportunities in all of the chaos. It was a thought-provoking way to end a great show.

To those who stopped by our booth to say hello to the Goddard team – it was wonderful to see you! If you didn’t get a chance, drop us a line: 

Learn more: Industrial Design Firm: When to Bring in a Design Partner

About Goddard

Goddard Inc. is a full-service engineering and industrial design company specializing in medical device developmentlife sciences and diagnostics, and high-tech consumer and industrial product development.

Drawing from the collective expertise of its experienced designers and engineers, Goddard’s mission is to deliver outstanding solutions that positively impact lives.

We would love to hear about what you’re working on.

Tell us about your project and let’s begin a conversation about creating products with technical precision and elegant design.

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