Content Director Bob Vavra Talks Generative Design

BOB  – BY DESIGN. Sharing thoughts on trends in the industry.

My mother always told people she had five children—one of each. Creating unique individuals from the same parents isn’t itself a unique concept, but for manufacturers, the idea of a repeatable finished product from a single design always has been the goal.

Today, that concept is being challenged on two fronts. Consumers and end-users want a customized product with their specific features assigned to them. The idea of ‘off-the-shelf’ no longer works, and manufacturers in a digital age are able to deliver on that idea.

At the same time, the design teams are challenged to find the best way to build a given product based on the general design parameters. For example, would a given material provide greater strength or lighter weight? Would moving the center of gravity affect the product’s stability?

Answering these kinds of questions traditionally was a matter of trial and error. Today, the concept of generative design is changing the way dozens of potential design answers can be reviewed.

You’re going to be reading a lot of about generative design in the coming months. It holds the promise of faster, more accurate design projects and faster time to market for products. It also means a more collaborative process with the operations and manufacturing teams to execute on the best of these designs.

It also will change the way the design team can use their analytical skills as well as their design talents to sift through these generative designs to find the favorite child. Parents would never admit to such an idea, but for a design team, identifying the best of the best is a profitable venture.

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