Feasibility Evaluation of Function Obtained by Product Combination

  • Yoko Nishihara Ritsumeikan University
  • Junya Hibino Ritsumeikan University
  • Junichi Fukumoto Ritsumeikan University
  • Ryosuke Yamanishi Ritsumeikan University
Keywords: Feasible Function by Product Combination, Idea Generation Support, Novelty, Utility and Feasibility of Generated Idea


New products are frequently launched in the world. Most of new products can be assumed as combinations of existing products. All of the combinations do not always become seeds of new selling products. Each existing product has its own functions. A new function may be thought up by combining two existing products. If a thought up function is feasible, the combination may be a seed of a new selling product. This paper proposes a feasibility evaluation system of functions obtained by product combination for supporting idea creation of a new product. The system makes phrases representing new functions obtained by product combination. The system evaluates whether each of new functions is feasible or not. The system outputs combinations with feasible functions. The experiments for idea generation showed the following two findings: (1). Ideas of high novelty were obtained from combinations with functions of low feasibility. (2). Ideas of high utility were obtained from combinations with two new feasible functions.


Osborn, Alex F.: Applied Imagination, Scribner, 1979.

de Bono, Edward: Six Thinking Hats: An Essential Approach to Business Management, Little, Brown, & Company, 1985.

Nishihara, Yoko and Ohsawa, Yukio, Communication Analysis focusing Negative Utterances in Combinatorial Thinking Games, The Review of Socionetwork Strategies, 4, 2, pp.31-46, 2010.

Kawakita, Jiro, The KJ method?a scientific approach to problem solving, Kawakita Research Institute, 1975.

Buzan, Tony, and Buzan, Barry, The Mind Map Book, Pearson Education Ltd., 2010.

Nishihara, Yoko, Sunayama, Wataru and Yachida, Masahiko, Creative Activity Support by Discovering Effective Combinations, Systems and Computers in Japan, 38, 12 pp.99- 111, 2007.

Magnusson, Peter R., Customer-Oriented Product Development - Experiments Involving Users in Service Innovation -, Dissertation for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy, Ph.D. in Business Administration, Stockholm School of Economics, 2003.

http://books.google.co.jp/books?id=t2wY2NJcwvYC&printsec=frontcover&hl=ja&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false (27th/Jan./2014 accessed)

http://www.daiko-kikaku.com/sem_key_word1.html (27th/Jan./2014 accessed)

Liikkanen, Lassi A., Hamalainen, Matti M., Haggman, Anders, Bjorklund, Tua, Koskinen, Mikko P., Quantitative Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Idea Generation in the Wild, Human Centered Design, 6776, pp.120-129, 2011.

Technical Papers (Advanced Applied Informatics)