Made in future

Things aren’t made like they used to be. In a world where everything is personalised and customisable, the digital transformation is reshaping design, prototyping and production. Are you in?

All right. I’m reading.

Let’s start with the basics: design. Watch Netflix’s latest original series, Abstract: step inside the minds of the most innovative designers in various disciplines and you’ll learn how design impacts every aspect of modern life. From architecture to automotive to fashion, design affects everything, which explains why so many companies are led by a DEO – a Design Executive Officer.

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The most innovative companies in the world use design as an integrative resource to innovate more efficiently and successfully. Source: BoltGroup

Creativity is a human pursuit!

Are you sure? What if artificial intelligence becomes able to design things better than humans? Try it yourself: play QuickDraw and train a neural network to recognise your drawings. Deep learning algorithms applied to generative design are challenging designers, thanks to machine learning and the ability to find the right pattern through data analysis. Step into the future: with programmable materials and smart fabrics the possibilities are endless.

Are robot designers going to replace humans?

It’s hard to say. AI and robots can already design, but the road to replace the human touch is a long one. For example, even though they’re surrounded by big data, music streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music still need dedicated teams of curators to select music you might like. And when it comes to clothes, subscription services like Stitch Fix, Trunk Club or Bombfell use your choices to predict your style and taste, but fashion stylists are always there to provide advice.

Subscriptions? You told me I’d be able to print everything at home!

This is a matter for debate: 3D printers have disrupted digital fabrication, but we’re a long way from having one in every home. Why? Because while mass customisation is something we want, it’s hard to achieve. It’s possible only when product development is focused on direct interaction with the customer. In brief, mass customisation is not about to transform customers into producers, but to near-producers and customers. Digital fabrication is real and additive manufacturing is going beyond its limits, as shown by Project Escher by Autodesk and Enabling the Future kids.

So, I can’t print my new shoes at home any time soon?

Nope, sorry. But thanks to additive manufacturing, sport brands are pioneering their design and production processes, as Architech by Under Armour and Futurecraft by Adidas show.

Pretty cool, isn’t it?

Are these so different from normal sneakers?

Yes, they are. Because the way these shoes are made is reshaping factories. Welcome to Industry 4.0, started in Germany and now pushed forward by Speedfactory by Adidas: a brand new factory full of 3D printers and robots, acting together to reinvent the way sneakers are made. Is this the fourth Industrial Revolution? Ask Brick Reply to discover the comprehensive Industry 4.0 platform and join the FactoryHack with Reply!

This is the future!

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