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Ten 2.009 Tips

Doug Vincent, an MIT Mechanical Engineering Alumnus, CEO of DesignMentor and many-time 2.009 instructor, prepared 10 tips for his team. They may be helpful for your team as well.

1) Innovation in product design results through a process, not a series of unrelated events.

2) Questions are critical...Assertions of opinion are deadly. Success results from being both creative and informed.

3) It is what it is, not what you, your instructor, or anyone else would like to believe. As said by Woodie Flowers, "Mother nature applies all of her rules all of the time".

4) Skipping steps is a false economy...the problems exist so the sooner they are discovered, understood and addressed, the better the outcome.

5) Test with sketch models, mockups or prototypes early and often. Showing is better than telling.

6) Strong foundations are essential for strong houses.

7) Success is 1000 'failures' in 1001 'attempts'. As Linus Pauling said "the best way to have a good idea is to have many ideas". Don't give up at the first sign of a challenge.

8) Solutions are discovered...and discovery is hard work.

9) Product development is a team sport. Both skills and personality matter!

10) Approach 2.009 as a team preparing for a championship season...prepare, prepare, prepare. You can't cram the night before to get into shape for the big game.