Today's blog post comes from our team at our Technology Center in San Francisco.
The Autodesk Pier 9 Technology Center in San Francisco invited a world-class group of manufacturing experts, academics, and leaders in the digital manufacturing industry to the inaugural Configurable Micro Factory Symposium, June 18–19, 2018.
Over the course of two days, participants engaged in a rich cross-pollination of ideas and strategies, conversations, and networking. With representatives from the areas of research, data collection and analytics, part sourcing, on-demand machining, venture capital, education, and microfactories, the discussions were rich and enlivened.
During the Symposium’s sessions, a palpable energy surrounded the seemingly unlimited opportunities afforded to manufacturers engaging with new technologies and exploring future potentials. The changing nature of specialized products, consumer desires, and increasing accessibility to production and distribution creating enormous opportunities for niche manufacturing and microfactories.
The size of opportunity is matched only by the significant challenges in terms of implementation, financing, and worker education. To bring the future potentials into the present day, the industry needs to develop new models of doing business, educating workers, creating networks of capital investment, digitizing production, and sharing information through communication and data standards. With the broad mix of thought leaders and practitioners brought together at Pier 9, the group took stock of the challenges and opportunities, deeply exploring the future of the industry across multiple axes.
Autodesk is happy to collaborate with the industry to face the challenge.
An Autodesk Pier 9 Residency offers access to our world-class workshop facility including industrial machines and equipment, desktop workspace, and most importantly, our community of vibrant technologists who are pushing the boundaries. Residency seats are available on a rolling basis, with a timeframe that can match your project or research trajectory. We seek residents who will share their work as it relates to the configurable microfactory vision, will join us at Pier 9 for their residency, and who are excited to contribute to the thought leadership of this industry.
Can you help us find the next generation of amazing folks that will bring the explore the configurable microfactory and bring it to life?
- We want to fill the Residency with the most interesting people and projects that contribute to the future of manufacturing in one way or another — this means folks working on anything from data collection and management, to huggable collaborative robotics. Are they reinventing the idea of a factory by working on some new technology? Send them our way!
- We have a rolling Residency where some collaborators will be in the building for a few months, and some a year or so. Everyone will be on a timeline that matches their project or their ability to leave home-base to come work at the pier.
- We are turning the whole building into a think tank around this concept. This means that we are not retooling the workshop into just one instance of a configurable microfactory (though it will continue to be a test bed). The Autodesk Research teams has moved into the pier, along with a raft of new Residents, and we hope to foster the most interesting conversations/debates/arguments/mindstorms around the future of manufacturing between all these teams, our visitors, and the rest of the company.
If you or someone you know is a good fit for a residency, have them (or yourself) apply:
Microfactories are alive in the lab.