Autodesk serves three primary industries:
- Architecture, Engineering, and Construction (AEC)
- Product Design and Manufacturing (PD&M)
- Media and Entertainment (M&E)
Our position is that these industries are converging:
- Customers who make buildings (AEC) are starting to behave more like customers who make things (PD&M). Whereas buildings used to be one-offs, more and more, parts of buildings (e.g., trusses) are being constructed offsite in environmentally-controlled warehouses, brought to the construction site, and assembled into position. AEC customers are suddenly concerned with mass production and quality control.
- Customers who make things (PD&M) are starting to make more bespoke items. Instead of setting up huge factories to make thousands of identical items, manufacturers are becoming more agile, configuring microfactories to make small runs, more like one-offs, of personalized items.
- Both AEC and PD&M customers see the benefit in showcasing what they make via Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality that has been a mainstay of the M&E industry for years.
It is in this vein that I recommend Mark Albert's "A Convergence of Construction and Manufacturing" post on Modern Machine Shop.
Autodesk has always been an automation company. Today, more than ever, that means helping our customers automate their design and make processes. We help them embrace the future of making, where they can do more (e.g., quantity, functionality, performance, quality), with less (e.g., energy, raw materials, timeframes, waste of human potential), and realize the opportunity for better (e.g., innovation, user experience, efficiency, sustainability, return on investment). Recognizing that the three industries we serve have more in common than one would think is part of the opportunity for better.
Convergence is alive in the lab.