New product project: Tumbler with a sugar indicator / Sticky toilet seat cover

Two groups of the students who took the course, Design Marketing 2013 Fall, made their interesting presentations.



1. SugaVoid (made By Geon Lee, Minhyeong Park, Minji Hwang, Donggyu Jung, and Jiyun Kim)


Problem: WHO(world health organization) suggests that sugar intake should be less than 50g for adults and less than 35g for kids. However, since students drink about 2 cans of soft drinks a day, consuming 50g of sugar, and then intake additional sugar from other foods, they usually go beyond the recommended amount of sugar per day.  The students took research of 25 randomly selected people and found that people are willing to adjust the amount of sugar that they take when they recognize that they are taking too much sugar. How do they help people notice how much sugar they take a day?

Solution: They propose a tumbler called SugaVoid which measures and indicates how much sugar is included in the liquid. In particular, it indicates the amount of sugar visually (sugar cubes) rather than verbally (grams) and communicates this information with other applications to help consumers keep track of and their sugar consumption.



2. Sticover (made by By Jihwan Hong, Seorin Jeong, Jaemyun Park, Ikhwan Kim, and Seunghye Ryu)


Problem: People desire to use clean toilets in public spaces. However, the market does not satisfy rapidly growing customer needs of hygiene.

Solution: They propose a sticky toilet seat cover called Sticover. In the present, competitors focus on either price or comfortableness. For example, Hyzen and Cleancover are relatively easy to use but expensive, whereas Sanicool is cheap but uncomfortable. Their proposed Sticover is not only comfortable but also reasonably priced. It specifically targets the business owners who want to provide clean experience to their customers. They consider conducting a cost leadership strategy with other 4p marketing mix, and position sticover as a mandatory item.

Ground level traffic lights help pedestrians be safe

Tactile paving is a system of textured ground surface indicators. It aims to assist pedestrians who are blind or visually impaired (see Wikipedia) and is also called truncated domes, detectable warnings, Tactile Ground Surface Indicators, or detectable warning surface. In Seoul, Korea, some of the tactile pavings light up at night. Interestingly, its color turns the same color with the traffic light; it turns red when the traffic light is red, and it is green when the traffic light is green.

DML_tactitle paving 01   DML_tactitle paving 02   DML_tactitle paving 03

This lighting system will not only benefit visually impaired pedestrians; it will also enhance the safety of the pedestrians who are distracted by their own tasks (e.g., listening music by earphones or sending text messages by their smart phones)!

How can we learn and acquire skills?

20131014_Stellan Ohlsson @ SKKU_Skill acquisition (2)

Stellan Ohlsson, Professor in Psychology at University of Illinois at Chicago visited COGENG (Cognitive Engineering Lab) at SKKU and gave a speech on skill acquisition. He introduced his own work of learning from errors in which he argues that, in order to acquire or specializes in a certain skill (e.g., changing a lane to the left while driving), people should not only perform a certain task (e.g., turning the steering wheel to the left) but also detect and correct errors (e.g., turning the steering wheel to the left only when a car behind approaches). According to his constraint based approach, a skill is acquired only when a certain action with a negative outcome is unlearned (e.g., turning the steering wheel to the left slowly so that being hit by the car behind).

Certainly, there are many more ways to acquire skills. According to his review paper published in 2008, there are at least nine different ways of how people acquire skills.

1. Internalize direct instructions

2. Generalize from specific examples

3. Analogize to prior skill knowledge

4. Reason from prior declarative knowledge

5. Encode results of heuristic search

6. Strengthen positive outcomes

7. Unlearn actions with negative outcomes

8. Discover short cuts in execution histories

9. Accumulate statistical information

Preference reversal of environmental friendly product

Joo @ PHBS

  • “Preference Reversal of Environmental Friendly Product,” Presented at the HSBC Business School, Peking University, ShenZhen: China, October 30, 2013.

Do consumers like the environmental friendly products they buy? My colleague, Bohee, and I borrow the literature from the Behavioral Decision Theory and argue this is not always the case; consumers often choose the green product even though it does not work well. This suggests that, in some cases, environmental friendliness could be merely a marketing gimmick.