The Use of Paper Modelling Techniques in New Product Development

Tiago Girão, Tomé Canas, Arlindo Silva

Simple and crude prototypes can have a great impact on developing new products, particularly when used in early stages of development processes, because they are quick to build and make use of accessible resources. Rapid and low-cost manufacturing of three-dimensional models promote the interactions between the development team and their future users, and also testing multiple solutions for the product. Nevertheless, even the simplest physical representation of a product or part of it can become a real challenge to make. Recently, methods of building paper prototypes were improved by the use of software tools. Now, using specific computer applications it’s possible to create physical artifacts from paper and cardboard materials directly from CAD applications, testing colors, textures and labeling effects.
In the present work, paper modeling techniques are presented as an alternative rapid prototyping (PR) technology for specific stages of the development process. Additionally, a practical workflow methodology is proposed to facilitate the elaboration of paper prototypes, since the early stages of the development process, reflecting on the benefits and transformations of using paper crafting technologies in customeroriented and user-centered design and development.