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SOM and CASE Launch AEC Industry's First Crowdsourced, Web-based Resource for Sharing Innovative Tools and Technologies
AEC-APPS democratizes how building-industry tools are created, discovered, and sharedApril 15, 2013 New York, NY - AEC-APPS (aec-apps.com) is the first Web-based library of architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) applications built by and for digital tool users and toolmakers, who share a common interest in the evolution of innovative technologies. Conceived, designed, and maintained by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (www.som.com) and CASE (www.case-inc.com ) to lead the industry toward a model of collaborative knowledge and technology exchange, AEC-APPS connects tools, from snippets of code to established software platforms, and people, from educators and students to practitioners and hobbyists. Part Wikipedia™, part GitHub™, AEC-APPS is a not-for-profit online community that fosters knowledge sharing and problem solving across disciplines, software platforms, geographic locations, and experience levels. “Innovation in digital tools is changing the nature of practice, and it’s being driven by many players in different parts of the AEC industry, but they are not often aware of one another’s efforts,” notes SOM’s Technical Director Nicholas Holt. “We saw an opportunity to bridge the awareness gap by creating a new kind of social-media hub for the building industry, where tool users and toolmakers could share ideas on equal footing, from students scripting in universities, to entrepreneurial incubators in the basements of Brooklyn, to the developers at Dassault, Bentley, Autodesk, McNeel, and other major contributors.” “Developers are constantly creating new tools and applications to improve building design, construction and management. The pace at which these tools are released is rapidly increasing and frankly, overwhelming even for the most savvy of tool users,” CASE Partner David Fano observes. “With this wealth of knowledge scattered all over the Internet, AEC-APPS will exist as the primary resource for the AEC industry to not only stay up-to-date with the latest technology but to evolve their own practices as well.” In the constantly expanding universe of digital tools dominated by established developers, opportunities for sharing practitioner-driven innovation are limited. Populated by a diverse, ‘maker-driven’ user group, AEC-APPS’s crowdsourcing initiative democratizes tool creation and selection, allowing designers to control their own tools and independent toolmakers to compete on a level playing field. Membership is free and open to the public. AEC-APPS has three primary components: User Community, App Kits, and Apps. AEC-APPS’s registered users are architects, engineers, contractors, allied design professionals, students, academics, researchers, computer scientists, artists, software developers, and enthusiasts. They post, rate, review, describe, and discuss apps to leverage existing tools and collaborate on the creation and sharing of new ones. The community is largely self-regulating so that no one entity, group, or tool is artificially elevated. Each user has an App Kit that can be browsed by other users and followers in the community, in which they collect and share applications. Apps, which are presented in a democratically crowd-sourced hierarchy, range from commercially marketed programs to user-created scripts, assets, and utilities. This toolbox approach encourages exploration of existing technologies and provides a shared space for development, customization, and creation of new tools. Following a four-month beta period, AEC-APPS currently hosts more than five hundred users who have posted some eight hundred apps for use in the design, construction, and operation of buildings, from enterprise software to plugins and other tools.About Skidmore, Owings & Merrill Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) is one of the leading architecture, interior design, engineering, and urban-planning firms in the world, with a 75-year reputation for design excellence and a portfolio that includes some of the most important architectural accomplishments of the 20th and 21st centuries. Since its inception, SOM has been a leader in the research and development of specialized technologies, new processes and innovative ideas, many of which have had a palpable and lasting impact on the design profession and the physical environment. The firm’s longstanding leadership in design and building technology has been honored with more than 1,600 awards for quality, innovation, and management. The American Institute of Architects has recognized SOM twice with its highest honor, the Architecture Firm Award—in 1962 and again in 1996. The firm maintains offices in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., London, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Mumbai, and Abu Dhabi.About CASE CASE exists where building and technology intersect. They combine their experiences as architects, engineers, projects managers, software developers and educators with a passion for technology to improve the way buildings are designed, built and operated. CASE is a Building Information Modeling (BIM) and integrated-practice consultancy based in New York City, and provides strategic advising to building design professionals, contractors and owners seeking to supplant traditional project delivery methods through technology-driven process innovation. Recognized as industry-thought leaders on the integration of technology and BIM principles, CASE helps the building industry identify, implement and manage the technologies and business practices that enable more effective coordination, communication and collaboration [more...
CASE Is Hiring Smart People
Do you love figuring out the building process? Do you REALLY love figuring out how to use technology to build better? Do you live or want to live in New York City? If you answered “You’re Damn Right I DO!!” to all of these questions then we want to talk to you about working at CASE. Here is what we are looking for: folks that are critical thinkers about process, folks that work smarter not harder (we need to save time for Ping Pong, Video games and that wonderful thing called the weekend) and most importantly, process oriented thinkers. Even though we are NOT a design firm, we need people that think like designers. Right now we are looking for a person that enjoys sharing knowledge. Were you that person in school or at work that was always excited to show people a better way to do something? At some point did you find yourself thinking, ” I should just run a workshop and teach people how to do this stuff?” We need people who are excited to get in a room with a group of leading professionals (our clients) and help teach them the processes and tools to deliver amazing projects. So, if you want to work with really fun, smart, exciting people and with the world’s best Architecture, Engineering and Construction firms you should drop what you’re doing and send us an email at I_want_to_work@case-inc.com with a brief note describing how you meet the qualifications above, a resume and some work samples. We look forward to hearing from you! CASE [more...
Robert Aish talks DesignScript at AIANY Center for Architecture, Dec. 12
Join Robert Aish, Director of Software Development at Autodesk, as he discusses “DesignScript: Integrating Multiple Disciplinary Tools to Create a New Design Environment” at the Center for Architecture this Wednesday, Dec. 12 from 6-8pm. The event is free but space is limited so reserve a seat online. Location: Center for Architecture, Tafel Hall (Lower Level). 536 LaGuardia Place, New York, NY Admission: FREE; AIA CES Learning Units: 1.5 This program targets firm principals, studio leaders, and other professional staff focused on innovative approaches to design. This presentation will discuss how DesignScript is addressing these issues and will include a walkthrough of the recently released version available on Autodesk Labs. Computational design is well established as an essential aspect of innovative architectural design, building engineering and digital fabrication. As we move to the second generation tools, new challenges are emerging: How to make computational design tools which are suitable for a range of programming skills from the novice to the expert? How to build systems that scale from simple to complex projects? How to progress from discipline specific applications to tools that support multi-disciplinary design collaboration at a computational level? Robert Aish is a Director of Software development at Autodesk responsible for the development of DesignScript. He previously developed Generative Components at Bentley and is a co-founder of SmartGeometry. He is a graduate of the Royal College of Art, London and has a Ph.D. in human computer interaction [more...
dRofus 1.5 beta Released!
dRofus 1.5 beta PRESS RELEASEdRofus – now with a new and powerful, built-in IFC model server ! Our Project & Enterprise customers now have access to the latest version of the dRofus beta. This version allows them to load all their design files into a model server for instantaneous visualization and program validation. And, believe it or not - this feature is provided without any additional license cost. This latest beta has an embedded, special edition, model server from Jotne EPM, - one of the leading providers in the world of this technology. (http://www.epmtech.jotne.com/jotne-epm-technology-as.241684.no.html) This makes it easy to visualize and validate a project across multiple design models. For the first time, users of dRofus have access to the latest design models and validation reports between program and design without any additional file handling. This allows for the opportunity for several new and improved work flows, better quality control across models and increased interaction with the stakeholders of the projects. Embedding a model server in dRofus also opens a large market among owners who wants to export project requirements and validate the design entirely through the use of an open data standard, IFC.This new functionality in dRofus can change the way the industry thinks and works regarding the relationship between program and design, as all parties gets simultaneous access to the same updated data and design models throughout the project. You can download a short presentation of how the model server works here. dRofus with model server will be presented at Autodesk University and Ecobuild later this year. Contact person: CEO Rolf Jerving, firstname.lastname@example.org, phone +1 917 340 1303 [more...
BIM 360 Glue iPad App!
Autodesk has released an iPad app for BIM 360 Glue! The description is below:The Autodesk® BIM 360™ Glue mobile app enables BIM 360 Glue users to more securely access Building Information Modeling (BIM) projects from anywhere, at any time. Building, infrastructure, design, and construction professionals can access and intuitively explore multi-disciplinary models online or offline, access all saved views, and review intelligent object properties. Easy access to up-to-date, multi-discipline BIM 360 Glue projects •“One-click to BIM” access from email notifications to a precise model view •Navigate through saved views and access intelligent object properties •Secure, authenticated, anywhere access to BIM 360 Glue projects Intuitive exploration of multi-discipline BIM projects in the field •Navigate using intuitive gesture-based pan, zoom and orbit •Walk through the model with gravity-assisted navigation optimized for BIM •View project model details with immersive, gyroscope-enabled look-around Integrated with your BIM ecosystem •Coordinate over 50 design file formats in BIM 360 Glue for mobile access •Publish Navisworks models to BIM 360 Glue for access in the field •Access large project models and data—online or offline Autodesk BIM 360 Glue mobile app is licensed under the following License and Services Agreement. Your download and/or use of the Autodesk BIM 360 Glue Mobile app shall serve as your acknowledgement to the terms of this License and Services Agreement with respect to your use of the Autodesk BIM 360 Glue mobile app [more...
Design a Bus Shelter
DesignByMany has posted another Sponsored Challenge. This challenge is to design a Bus Shelter! If you are interested in demonstrating your mad Revit or RevitLT skills, check out the competition! To follow the challenge and read the full challenge breif go here.Description: The challenge is to design a modular bus shelter for an urban pedestrian street. The goal is to provide an architectural solution that is functional, feasible, repeatable, and elegant. The bus shelter must protect people from the elements (rain, sun), while providing ample security, circulation and seating. The designer is free to choose a location, but the documentation should clearly explain the chosen location and how the design responds to its immediate context. The bus shelter must include a signage element for orientation and advertisement.Objectives: Protect pedestrians from the elements (rain, sun). Artificial lighting should be integrated into design Develop a design strategy that can adapt to various site conditions. Design should functional, feasible and elegant. Design should provide an area for signage. Have fun [more...
Trace - a new AEC app!
New app, Trace, is an evolution of design process, enabling the development of ideas, free thinking and communication amongst a global community of designers and creators.New York, September 25, 2012 - The Morpholio Project announces the launch of its second app, simply called Trace. The app explores the role of technology in the conceptual phase of the design workflow through a digital version of trace paper, and fosters communication amongst a global design culture. Trace, essential to any design or creative process, allows users to instantly draw on top of imported images or background templates, layering comments or ideas to generate immediate, intelligent sketches that are easy to circulate. The uniqueness of Trace is most visible in two primary modes. One is communication, in which the user can simply trace over something in order to give feedback or convey information quickly, and graphically. The second is idea exploration. "You are plugging yourself into a recursive feedback loop, as you iteratively build up an idea, taking several passes at it," says co-creator Mark Collins. Both allow creative cultures to maintain conceptual thinking as well as critical feedback throughout the design process. Created by architects, Trace addresses a number of questions about how the proliferation of device culture, social networking, and cloud technology are changing the way designers work and connect on a daily basis. It has been predicted that in 2020, there will be 50 billion mobile internet connections worldwide, the equivalent of seven devices per person. It is crucial that experimentation and research that harnesses the power of these devices, and makes tools specifically for the design and creative fields, occur in tandem with this rapid evolution of culture and process.Time Tested Process + New Technology What are the origins of an idea? How do we layer thoughts to create a generative workflow? How do we use memory as a way of distilling the most important decisions? Those that have ever used trace paper know that the drawings you create are unique in multiple ways. "The layers of paper literally act like a brain." says Collins, "They allow for remembering (by retracing) and forgetting (by adding new layers)." "These sketches are indebted to the many layers of thought from which they evolve, and inherently become a drawing that represents the sum of your most important ideas." says Co-Creator Jeffrey Kenoff. "For any creative culture, drawing on trace is just a different act, serving as a tool for generating ideas, communicating feedback and allowing one to truly think freely."Other Evolutions in Design Culture In the architectural world, trace can also be seen as an antidote to the prevailing digital model based design process, including parametric modeling and BIM (Building Information Modeling). The ease of creating automated or data based models can lead to a bypassing of crucial steps in the conceptual process, particularly if forced to be far too specific, far too early. Design tools should dis-inhibit through freedom and flexibility - something most CAD tools could strive further towards. It is a goal of the Morpholio Project to make software that opens up exploration and super-charges the creative brain, keeping constant the various streams of valuable feedback. "The emphasis is on design processes that are reflective and conceptual versus merely iterative." says Co-Creator Anna Kenoff. Trace argues that it is valuable to take sketches out of CAD programs, draw on top of them; analyzing intention, concept, or diagram, and then plug them back in. "Whereas BIM software improves production optimization, the Trace software is about assisting and evolving design process traditions by exploring new relationships between brain, hand, and technology." says Co-Creator Toru Hasegawa.How Trace Works The Trace App is beautifully simple, intelligently clean and familiar in its canary yellow background. It begins with a single page on which to sketch and allows for a variety of underlays, including templates, photos, or any imagery pulled from the cloud. From the first line it provides effortless access to a variety of simple functions. The key function however is the "New Trace Layer" button, which allows a user to take their sketch and add another sheet, then another, and another until the idea or sketch is built to its final stages. With each layer the user can adjust the opacity to either highlight or hide the information behind it. "Tracing over something is absolutely the foundation of the app," says Hasegawa, "Layers of trace paper are not the same as "layers" in Photoshop or other tools. Here, they are the stacking of ideas, as opposed to the organizing of files." In addition to using trace to build an idea, the app simplifies many other forms of feedback in the design process. The software imagines gathering information such as field conditions, construction photos, contact sheets, or sourcing imagery, and streamlining the process of editing, commenting and communicating instantly in sketches with an efficiency that words alone cannot achieve. Trace will also be integrated with the Morpholio app which works off the portfolio model to create an interactive platform in which to present, share and critique imagery. Morpholio's groundbreaking "Eye Time" functions combine with a global community of users to provide invaluable feedback on work shared through its variably public arenas: Crit, Pinup, and Community. Trace expands upon Morpholio's notion that that feedback is the most invaluable and generative resource for designers, and further propels crucial design processes into the cloud era.About In February 2011 a group of architects, and academics began The Morpholio Project with a small collection of collaborators. The experiment first produced the Morpholio app, which now includes nearly 10,000 designers and members of other visual disciplines such as photography, graphic arts, film, and television. Feedback from every user has influenced the process, goals, and definition of the project. "The Morpholio Project is first, and foremost an experiment in distributed intelligence," says Co-Creator, Mark Collins. "By leveraging the "wisdom of crowds" every designer can see and understand how his or her work is experienced by others". The project relies on a robust Advisory Council, of nearly 200 members, representing a range of studios, and universities worldwide including both students and professors from Columbia, Harvard, London's Architectural Association, and The School of Visual Arts. In addition, the project has received the support of Herman Miller, Dyson, and 3Form as sponsors. The software evolves with each new member and collaborator. The Morpholio Project has ambitious goals. We hope that together with our community we can globalize critique, create horizontal platforms for collaboration and truly reimagine the portfolio as a design utility. Morpholio Beta 1.3 and Morpholio Trace are both now available for download in Apple's App Store, and accessible via MyMorpholio.com. TRACE: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/morpholio-trace/id547274918?ls=1&mt=8 The Morpholio Project Co-Creators: Jeffrey Kenoff, Mark Collins, Toru Hasegawa, Anna Kenof [more...