Like a scientist's log, an engineering project notebook can be used to capture work in progress during a project. Scientists and engineers use project notebooks to record data as they collect it, to brainstorm explanations of data, to record details of experimental apparatus, and to make progress notes. The project notebook can be formal or informal, recorded on paper or on the computer.
Definition of a Design Notebook
A project notebook is a complete documentation of a project's details. This documentation includes sketches; information from books, discussions, and meetings; and your own thoughts. Unlike a formal report, a project notebook is more informal. In fact, you might consider it to be a journal where you also record your frustrations and successes about a project. A project notebook may also be called a design notebook. Like the project notebook, a design notebook includes similar entries, but concentrates more on design evolution.
The main purpose of a project notebook is to record your work as it progresses. This way, you can go back to the work you did months before and reconstruct, interpret and evaluate the processes you carried out to accomplish your project.