Alex, I think you and he are approaching this from two different perspectives.
From what I read, you say:
- Determine specifications based on usage needs
- Arrive at modularized design that accommodates changes, or 3-5 designs for various customer personnas
- Optimize the linear input equation for cost, to avoid overdesign based on customer specs
- Build, verify, ship
I think smolt1 looks at the engineering approach from a different set of parameters:
- Given the following constraints, not taking into account customer specifications, build the optimum design:
- Under $100 retail (internal COGS calc, margin, etc)
- Portable/lightweight, say <15 lbs., footprint to fit on standard 24" counter
- Natural/food safe materials
- As much PSI as possible, min threshold 5-6 PSI on 6" mold
- So his linear equation begins with very different constraints due to an alternative workflow.
Both have their merits. Your approach delivers a solution. His approach delivers more of a product/quasi-commodity, though hand made. It is standardized for defined customer personnas as a one-size-fits-most. And his approach has the possibility to benefit from economies of scale, given the standardized production.
IMHO, many ways out there to make people happy. Some people just want to click buy and don't even know what they want or how to explain it.