Wednesday, November 24, 2010

BuildBoston 2010 and AIA CES Workshop

Last week, I delivered a workshop talk at the Build Boston conference.

The topic was, what else, 3D Printing in AEC. The 90-minute workshop was structured around the AIA CES approved course by the same name. I was assisted by David Munson of munson3d, an industry consultant with deep experience in architectural design and visualization software and 3D printing.

The audience included a variety of architects ranging from a college senior thinking about using 3D printing for his thesis project to entry level designers to experienced architects/firm principals to retired architects wanting to learn more about new technology in their field. The most notable thing about this workshop is that questions from the audience started on my third slide, and they kept coming from different attendees such that I began to worry about covering all the content in the time allotted. This is a good problem to have. Usually in these AIA CES presentations, folks politely listen, check their watches periodically, fill out the questionnaire to get their AIA credits, and head out quickly to beat the lunch lines. This time, there was genuine interest in the subject matter as evidenced by the intelligent questions, and I could almost hear the gears turning in the minds of these architects as they thought about how to incorporate 3D printing in their design process. A few people stayed afterward to ask more questions – always a good sign!

Dave Munson did a terrific job in describing the various workflow options from CAD to 3D print along with several example projects he has worked on. By polling the audience in advance, we knew to focus on particular design-to-print workflows such as AutoCAD, Revit, SketchUp, and 3dsMax. We had about 15 models on display to help us illustrate the technology, and we passed these models around the room so that attendees could get a closer look.

Following are several workflows, courtesy of David Munson, Munson3D:

For readers in other parts of the US, contact your local Z Corp. dealer to ask about delivering the AIA CES course at your firm. Readers outside the US can contact me for more information by replying to this blog.

Happy Thanksgiving!