A Computational Model of Collaborative Creativity: A Meta-Design Approach

A Computational Model of Collaborative Creativity: A Meta-Design Approach

Amit Banerjee (Penn State Harrisburg, USA), Juan C. Quiroz (SilverSky Group LLC, USA) and Sushil J. Louis (University of Nevada, USA)
Copyright: © 2013 |Pages: 21
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-3998-0.ch010
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Abstract

The role of collaboration in the realm of social creativity has been the focus of cutting edge research in design studies. In this paper, the authors investigate the role of collaboration in the process of creative design and propose a computational model of creativity based on the newly proposed meta-design approach. Meta-design is a unique participatory approach to design that deals with opening up of design solution spaces, and is aimed at creating a viable social platform for collaborative design. A meta-design-based collaborative approach to the design process may achieve ET-creativity by expanding the conceptual space of design beyond what would have been possible by individual, non-collaborative design. The model has been implemented using interactive genetic algorithms, which casts the design problem as an optimization problem and uses a set of collaborative users for subjective fitness evaluation. The design problems investigated include the collaborative design of architectural floorplans and editorial design of brochures.
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Computational Creativity - A Formalized Notion

Researchers in computational creativity are interested in the underlying process of creative ideation. This fundamental question has led to the definition of a conceptual space of ideas, which a computer program can search in. Creativity that is a result of simply searching the conceptual space for complete or partial possibilities is labeled E-creativity, for exploratory creativity. If the conceptual space is considered bounded by static rules, such E-creativity is often regarded as merely “innovation”, and not creativity. On the other hand, if the rules that bound the conceptual space can be changed with respect to time, then the search for ideas in a continuously changing space is called T-creativity, for transformational creativity (Boden, 1999). This can be mapped to how a human thinker comes up with creative ideas. The mind is a veritable storehouse of ideas and if the mind could be mapped, this storehouse then becomes the conceptual space of ideas. If the thinker does not broaden his mind (by incorporating more domain knowledge, knowledge from other domains, etc.) he or she is just exploring a well-defined unchanging conceptual space producing ideas that may not necessarily be creative. It is only when the thinker moves out of rigid definitions of what-is and what-can-be, thereby modifying the conceptual space of ideas, that creative ideas are born. Kekule’s discovery of Benzene rings, Watson and Crick’s double helix model of the DNA, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater are just three of the many instances where thinkers and conceptualizers broke out of the well-defined mold and produced creative ideas. While what makes some people creative thinkers is a topic of ongoing neuroscience and psychology research, it can be presumed that T-creativity (breaking out of norms and boundaries) requires both an innate ability, varied knowledge and an applicative bent-of-mind.

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