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Tools: The Latest Architecture and News

Can a Machine Perform the Work of an Architect? A Chat with Jesper Wallgren, Founder of Finch 3D

There has been a lot of talk about how automation will affect the way we do architecture, and what our role will be when technologies reach our own desks and work tables. In recent years, while we have seen how robotics and advanced technology are gaining ground in construction and manufacturing, new tools are emerging that promise to automate the design process itself. These would allow us to quickly and easily configure living spaces and their dimensions in the initial stages of a project, using simulations and artificial intelligence.

Will this automation be the future of architectural design? We talked with Jesper Wallgren, architect and founder of Finch 3D, to better understand this tool and its possible scope.

Solve Complex Architectural Details With This 'Contour Duplicator Gauge'

Most of the materials that we use in the construction of our projects have shapes and dimensions that seek to facilitate their storage, transfer, and installation, being constituted in its majority by orthogonal modulations. These straight angles don't always fit with the irregularity of our designs, nor do they coincide exactly when encountering more organic materials or other specific elements such as ducts, pillars, or furniture.

This simple tool allows you to copy, duplicate, and measure complex contours so that the materials adapt perfectly to other elements. Its mobile 'teeth' must be pressed against the profile to obtain a mold of its shape, generating templates that will allow cutting and adjusting the original material with precision. Thus, the tool could even be useful for replicating or repairing unique details in restorations or refurbishments.

Digital Scaling Ruler Works as a Perfect Architect’s Tool

Unproductive meetings attempting to work with drawings that have been printed at the wrong scale, not dimensioned, or in a unit of measurement you’re not comfortable with is a frustration we can all relate to. These frustrations are what inspired one designer to create the Smart Scale Ruler, a physical, digitalized ruler that changes to suit your chosen unit of measurement or even work to a scale that doesn’t exist.

This New App Wants to Answer All Your Building Code Questions

Perhaps nothing can kill a project budget or give an owner heartburn quite like costly code fixes during (or in the worst case, after) construction. As architects, we do our best to navigate construction codes during design, but there’s no denying their complexity. Projects have to comply with multiple different codes at both the federal and local levels; different codes sometimes even contradict one another, leading to headaches for the design team.

However, a new website and mobile app hopes to make understanding and complying with building codes easier for architects and designers. “The solution we provide is a search engine tailored for architecture,” explains Scott Reynolds, co-founder of UpCodes. With his background in architecture, Reynolds has partnered with his brother Garrett Reynolds—who has a PhD in machine learning—and through UpCodes, the pair to ease some of that building code-driven frustration.

InstruMMents Releases Portable Scanner to Digitally Capture the 3D Curves of Any Object

Digitally modeling objects from real life has just become easier.

Tech innovation company InstruMMents has unveiled a new functionality to their 01 portable dimension scanner that allows you to capture the 3D curves of any surface. Logging in to the Pro App, users can then track, share and export the curves into key 3D formats, allowing you to quickly recreate any desired object in 3D.

Call For Submissions: [TRANS-] lation

ABOUT :: [TRANS-] is a critically-reviewed academic journal published in print and online, inviting expressions of interest for submitting works of design, writing, or multi-media on the topic of design process and design communication for Vol. No. 2 to be published in May 2016.

TOPIC ::
In the second volume, [TRANS-] will explore the topic of [TRANS-]lation.
In a largely results-based society, how do designers evaluate process? How can a more thorough assessment of the translation that occurs during creative activities make us better communicators and collaborators with end users, consultants, clients, and all others we affect through design?

ELIGIBILITY ::
[TRANS-] accepts submissions from

Google Earth Pro Is Now Free

Google Earth Pro has dropped its $399 yearly subscription and is now freely available to all. Beyond providing imagery, detailed maps, terrain and 3D building models of the world, Google Earth’s pro-version is particularly convenient for project planning and research; unlike its standard tools, Pro allows users to print images at 4800x3200, import and pin thousands of addresses onto the map at once, capture HD videos of what’s on screen, and easily measure distances and areas with polygons, circles and more, rather than with just lines and paths. Download it for free and fill out a quick form to unlock its Pro features.