Miquel Prats is a research associate in the Design Group, working on the project 'Designing with Vision', funded by The Leverhulme Trust. The project is exploring the possibilities of using eye-tracking technology as a computational interface to support the creation and exploration of design shape alternatives. Using a design shape computation tool (developed in a previous project called DSSG) in conjunction with eye tracking the system aims to use data on points of interest to offer designers variations on their preferred images as an aid to generate design alternatives.
Miquel completed his PhD on 'Shape Exploration in Product Design' in 2007. His research interests include eye-tracking, shape exploration, product design, shape grammars, sketching, and generative design. Prior to beginning his academic research career he worked in industry as a product designer. He received his degree in Industrial Design Engineering from Universitat de Girona.
Phone: +44 (0)1908 652860
Fax: +44 (0)1908 654052
Room: N2026, Venables building
McKay A, Chase S, Garner S, Jowers I, Prats M, Hogg DC, Chau, HH, de Pennington A, Earl CF and Lim S. (2009) 'Design synthesis and shape generation', in Inns, T. (Ed.): Designing for the 21st Century, Volume 2: Interdisciplinary Methods and Findings, Ashgate Publishing Ltd, ISBN 1409402401, 978, pp304-321.
Prats M, Lim S, Jowers I, Garner S, Chase S (2009) Transforming shape in design: Observations from studies of sketching, Design Studies 30(5) pp 503-520
Lim S, Prats M, Jowers I, Chase S, Garner S, McKay A (2008) Shape exploration in design: Formalising and supporting a transformational process, IJAC - International Journal of Architectural Computing, 4(6) pp 415-433.
Prats M, Garner S (2006) Observations on Ambiguity in Design Sketches, Tracey, an internet-based drawing research journal, Loughborough University
Prats M, Earl C, Garner S, Jowers I (2006) Shape exploration of designs in a style: towards generation of product designs, AI EDAM, special issue on Understanding, Representing and Reasoning about Style, 20(3) pp 201–215
Papers in conference proceedings and workshops
Jowers I, Prats M, Hesham E, Lee JH (2010) A study of emergence in the generation of Islamic geometric patterns, CAADRIA '10, 7-10 April, Hong Kong, China
Prats M, Jowers I, Pedreira N, Garner S, McKay A (2010) Interpretation of Geometric Shapes – An Eye Movement Study, Symposium on Eye Tracking Research and Applications (ETRA), 22-24 March, Austin, Texas, USA
Prats M, Garner S (2009) Making meaning: developing an understanding of form in distance design education, Design and Semantics of Form and Movement DeSForM '09, 26-27 October, Taipei, Taiwan
Prats M, Lim S, Jowers I (2008) Describing shape transformations in design sketches, Design Computing and Cognition DCC’08 workshop on Informing computational support for conceptual design: lessons learned from sketching studies, 21 June, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA
Jowers I, Prats M, Lim S, and McKay A, Garner S, Chase S (2008) Supporting Reinterpretation in Computer-Aided Conceptual Design, 5th EUROGRAPHICS Workshop on Sketch-Based Interfaces and Modeling, (Eds) Alvarado C and Cani MP, 11-13 June, Annecy, France
Lim S, Prats M, Chase S, Garner S (2008) Categorisation of designs according to preference values for shape rules, Design Computing and Cognition DCC'08, 23–25 June, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA
Lim S, Prats M, Chase S, Garner S (2008) Sketching in design: Formalising a transformational process, CAADRIA '08, 9-12 April, Chiang Mai, Thailand
Prats M, Earl C (2006) Exploration through drawings in the conceptual stage of product design, Design Computing and Cognition DCC'06, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
Prats M, Jowers I, Earl C, Garner S (2004) Generative curves in product design, Design Computing and Cognition DCC'04, MIT, Cambridge, MA
Prats M, Jowers I, Earl C, Garner S (2004) Improving product design via a shape grammar tool, Proceedings of the 8th International Design Conference, Dubrovnik, Croatia
Jowers I, Prats M, Earl C, Garner S (2004) On curves and computation with shapes, Generative CAD systems symposium: G-CADS 2004, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA
Prats M (2007) Shape Exploration in Product Design: Assisting Transformation in Pictorial Representations, PhD Thesis, The Open University
'Designing with Vision' project uses eye tracking technology to identify participant interest in emerging sketch designs. Using a design shape computation tool (developed in a previous project called DSSG) in conjunction with eye tracking the system will use data on points of interest to offer designers variations on their preferred images as an aid to shape creation.
This is a two-year project, funded by The Leverhume Trust, that began in May 2009. ‘Designing with Vision’ is worth £196k. Steve Garner from The Open University is the principal investigator, Alison McKay, Professor of Design Systems at Leeds University is the co-investigator, Miquel Prats from the Open University and Iestyn Jowers from Leeds University are research associates.
'Visual Exploration of Cultural Style in Design' project (VECSiD) is concerned with exploring the concept of cultural style in design, and to this end seeks to compare designs from different cultures in order to explore differences and similarities. It is proposed that formal methods of design generation can capture elements of style, and to this end shape grammars are used as a means of style comparison.
The project started in October 2008 and will end in December 2009. Project members include Ji-hyun from KAIST (South Korea), Miquel Prats from the Open University (UK), Iestyn Jowers from Leeds University (UK), Hesham Eissa from Sultan Qaboos University (Oman), Hyoung-June Park from University of Hawaii (USA), and Sungwoo Lim from Loughborough University (UK).
'Design Synthesis and Shape Generation' project (DSSG) explored how designers generate shapes and how shape computation systems might augment designers without impinging upon their creativity. An experimental prototype shape computation system was constructed.
The project was funded by AHRC (Programme: Designing for the 21st Century). DSSG ended on July 2008 and it was worth £319k. The project was led by Leeds University and involved staff from the University of Strathclyde and the Open University.
Page Last Updated: 2 August, 2010