Data mining – user preferences

The vast amount of online consumer reviews on electronic products offers a great resource of useful information on consumers’ experiences with regard to the quality and functionality of products. They provide a naturalistic database to investigate to role of durability and longevity properties for user satisfaction.

The focus of the “Data mining” topic lies on the analysis of online user reviews and evaluations of four product groups: smartphones, washing machines, coffee machines and flat screen televisions. A systematic approach based on the Big Data methodology will be developed that aims to identify technical and functional determinants of obsolescence within user reviews and examines these subsequently. Results of the analysis are evaluated with regard to their practical use for an integrated product development.

Main questions are:

  • What are suitable data sources (case study: user reviews on electronic products)?
  • What techniques of online data acquisition and evaluation are appropriate and significant?
  • To what degree can the failure mechanisms and customer needs be systematized and correlated based on the given database?
  • Which eco design methods are suitable to integrate customer experience and the knowledge of failure mechanisms in order to promote the development of sustainable products in at the long term?

The research includes the following steps:

  1. Data processing and prototyping: data sources holding potential information of failure mechanisms and customer requirements are researched and defined; data cleansing and normalizing
  2. Data analysis: evaluation of data processing tools; development of evaluation heuristics and algorithms for the automated generation of knowledge
  3. Information processing: extraction of information out of data on customer needs and failure mechanisms.
  4. Preparation of information for online information platform, providing sustainable and life-extending aspects for designers, product-policy instruments, integrated product design and decision basis for customers.


For questions contact: Eduard Wagner