We are on the brink of the biggest change in how we make things since the industrial revolution, and this isn't just about new technology. It's about changes in culture, politics, and attitudes. As a leading 3D technology provider for the architecture, engineering, and construction; product design and manufacturing; and media and entertainment industries, Autodesk is paying attention to three major catalysts for disruption of the industries that we serve:
Means of Production
The process of how we make physical things is evolving. Autodesk customers simply don't design, manufacture, or build things the same way as they used to.
The Nature of Consumer Demand
The customers of Autodesk customers care more about how and where things are made. Interest in locally made, produced, and sold items is growing everywhere. Customers prefer bespoke creations over off-the-shelf goods and services.
The term "Product" is a proxy for all the things Autodesk customers make (whether it's a building, movie, highway, or car). Things are now deeply connected — to each other and to other interconnected digital systems. The bottom line is that things don't function in isolation anymore. They are smart. They talk to each other, affect each other, even change over time.
For our holiday luncheon the other day, I wore two bespoke creations: a tie and a shirt.
I have blogged about testing the bespoke creation process for myself. The Original Stitch experiment was a disaster because I had to supply my own measurements. The MTailor experiment was a success because I used an iPhone to video myself, and MTailor computed my measurements from the video. The shirt is manufactured specifically for me based on the scientifically captured data in 2016.
By the way, if you want your own custom-made shirt, if you sign up using this link, we each get a $20 discount.
My daughter, Stephanie, attended Bay Farm School in Alameda. She made this tie for me as part of a third grade class project in 1995. Stephanie decorated the tie using markers and her two tiny hands.
Indeed the nature of customer demand is changing as I do enjoy both items more than other ties and shirts I own. Indeed the means of production is evolving as the input to the tie-making process was a daughter's love for her father, and the input to the shirt-making process was a video capture by an iPhone. Oh, the times they are a changin'.*
Autodesk has always been an automation company, and today more than ever that means helping people make more things, better things, with less; more and better in terms of increasing efficiency, performance, quality, and innovation; less in terms of time, resources, and negative impacts (e.g., social, environmental). Bespoke items fall into that category.
Bespoke items are alive in the lab.