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Autodesk University: Now, How Did You Make That?

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    Autodesk University: Now, How Did You Make That?

    Last night’s Gallery at AU Designer’s Forum was a delightful opportunity to see how all the fantastic designs on display in the Gallery at AU in the Exhibit Hall were created and to find out what these same designers are working on now.  Each presenter was allotted 6 minutes for his presentation. Here’s a summary of just a few of the designer’s presentations:
    Saul Griffith of Otherlab took the stage first. Saul is so in love with experimentation and doing things differently that he even chose to make his presentation an experiment—a Pecha Kucha-style presentation of 400 slides in 400 seconds! At lightning speed, Saul talked about how much he wants to “democratize” design and make it something that anyone can do.  You may have noticed one of Otherlab’s Pneubots outside the Creative Studio here at the conference.
    Alan Barrington of Mercedes Benz talked about his participation in the Mercedes Benz Biome Project whose goal was to design a car that weighs 1000 lbs. or less.  He and his team looked at biomimicry as a way to solve engineering problems presented by this challenge. In the project’s early stages, they used Autodesk® Maya® to explore organic form, and movie making techniques to create an animated presentation that taps into the emotional component, which helped to inspire his team’s car design.
    Shajay Bhooshan of Zaha Hadid talked about his experience as a resident of Autodesk IDEA Studio where designers, engineers, artists, and scholars pursue projects that push design technology (Shajay referred to it as “abusing technology”) to its limits to solve real-life problems. He described his experience as “Architects  Learning to Fall (literally and figuratively) and said it was “fun to be rewarded for seemingly ludicrous ideas.” The project was a collaboration of local craftsmen (for example, tailors and upholsters in India) and international professionals.
    Jason Bobe of the Personal Genomes Project believes that one day, everybody will own a DNA sequencing device. DNA sequencing used to be “exotic and complicated”, so it was limited to a few medical labs. Today for $100 per month you can get access to all kinds of biotech tools.  Why is this important?  Jason showed how two high school girls were able to discover that 86% of fish used for sushi is mislabeled.  Also the microbes on your body are unique, like a fingerprint, and may have applications for telling who you are and where you have been.  Bio weather maps can help us monitor the movement of microbes.  Jason’s team is looking for the person with the “most species-rich wallet”. Drop by the Gallery in the Exhibit Hall and contribute a dollar from your wallet or purse to the cause.
    If you haven’t stopped by the Gallery at AU in the Exhibit Hall, be sure to check it out before it closes at 2:00 today.
    --sandy


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