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Open Source Construction

open source construction

Construction like software

Imagine if we treated construction like software. The user interface is the finishes, temperature, and furniture as well as the knobs and handles that operate water and electrical fixtures. The backend code is the plumbing, electrical, and HVAC systems all packaged in a structural and insulated framework. The materials are specs are data This building is an instantiation of the complex drawing set and design process that precludes it just as software is a compiled or packaged version of the source code.

This analogy is meant to stimulate imagination. However, at Boxy we believe that the construction industry could learn a lot from the software industry especially when it comes to sharing information in an open source way. Information is shared through BIM models and instruction manuals, but construction processes are rarely shared. The construction industry needs to be reinvented. While manufacturing and software development have become significantly more efficient, construction has lagged behind and in some cases even become less efficient.

Open source in practice

What could open source look like in the construction industry? Skilled tradesmen and some builders like The Build Show have ways of sharing information. New tradesmen learn from Youtube videos or consult on forums to figure out how to do a particular task. However, there is limited published information on systematic best practices when it comes to large construction project and design methodologies. Groups like WikiHouse are making great strides to provide design for manufacturing documentation for building and sharing well documented processes. Here at Boxy we look forward to a future of faster, cleaner, and more affordable construction, so we encourage iteration, collaboration, and innovation by sharing well documented radical designs and encouraging collaboration.

Let us know what you think about these ideas in the comments below or by reaching out to us.

Build with Boxy,

Mateo Atwi

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