Skip to main content

Prototype: objects to systems

Through prototyping, designers can create tangible representations, ideas that can be tested and refined. This iterative process lead to more innovative and effective solutions.

The learning continuum.

 |  Antonio Caballero

Prototyping is a key step in the design thinking process and can have significant impacts on businesses and society. Prototyping can be done with a wide variety of materials, and the level of fidelity will vary depending on the purpose of the prototype. For example, a low-fidelity prototype might be created with simple materials like cardboard or paper, while a high-fidelity prototype would be more detailed and realistic. The level of fidelity also needs to be appropriate for the stage of the design process.

Early in the process, it is more important to focus on exploring ideas and generating feedback, so low-fidelity prototypes are often the most effective. As the design progresses, higher fidelity prototypes can be used to test more specific aspects of the design.

What are we missing?

Prototyping is not only essential for the design thinking process but can also have a significant impact on businesses and society. By creating prototypes, businesses can gain a better understanding of user needs and requirements. This in turn can lead to more successful products and services. In addition, prototyping can help to reduce the risk of failure associated with new product development.

The first step in prototyping is to create a model of the product or service. This can be done with physical objects, paper, or software. The prototype should be designed to test the feasibility of the idea and to identify any potential problems.

” Design thinkers use prototypes to test new ideas and to understand how people will interact with the product or service.”
Antonio Caballero

After the prototype is created, it is important to test it with potential users. This can help to identify any issues that need to be addressed before the product or service is launched.

Wrapping Up

When it comes to prototyping, there are two main types: object-level and system-level.
Object-level prototyping focuses on individual components or pieces of a larger system. This type of prototyping is often used in the early stages of design when the focus is on individual objects rather than the interactions between them.
System-level prototyping, on the other hand, focuses on the interactions between components in a system. This type of prototyping is often used in the later stages of design when the focus is on how the system as a whole will function.

Some of the key benefits include:

  • Allowing organizations to test new ideas before committing significant resources.
  • Helping to identify potential problems early in the development process.
  • Facilitating collaboration between academic researchers, product developers, and design thinkers.

Another benefit of prototyping is that it can help to build consensus. When multiple stakeholders are involved in a project, it can be difficult to reach an agreement on the final design or product. A prototype can be a useful tool for building consensus by giving everyone a chance to see and experience the proposed design or product.


  • Understanding Visual Cues in Visualizations

    Ha-Kyung Kong University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, et al. “Understanding Visual Cues in Visualizations Accompanied by Audio Narrations: Proceedings of the 2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems.” ACM Conferences, 1 May 2019,

  • Which visual cues work best to drive attention?

    Labay, B. B., & Ben Labay Ben is the Managing Director at Speero. He has a background as a research scientist specializing in statistics and data science. Ben combines years of academic and statistics training with customer experience and UX knowledge to h. (2018, July 6). Which visual cues work best to drive attention? [original research]. CXL.

  • The impact of visual cues, reward, and motor feedback

    Pakan, J. M. P., Currie, S. P., Fischer, L., & Rochefort, N. L. (2018, September 4). The impact of visual cues, reward, and motor feedback on the representation of behaviorally relevant spatial locations in primary visual cortex. Cell reports. Retrieved May 5, 2022, from

  • Impacts of Cues on Learning and Attention

    Liu, Rui, et al. “Impacts of Cues on Learning and Attention in Immersive 360-Degree Video: An Eye-Tracking Study.” Frontiers, Frontiers, 1 Jan. 1AD,

Leave a Reply

From the desk of:

Antonio Caballero

Creative Research Designer

Popular Articles


Our Featured Product of the Month

desk – MAMMOTH


    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop
    Products you might like
      Calculate Shipping
      Apply Coupon
      Send this to a friend