Limitations of existing technological options


Blurring the Line Between Architects and Tech

The question then became, what is the role of architects in developing software and applications that benefit both process and performance? Should architects learn to code?

The general response was to instead promote curiosity and inventiveness. Instead of necessitating in-house development, they advised increasing the involvement of younger staff members with technical skills, along with learning to recognize areas where technology can help alleviate the mundane.

“If you catch yourself doing something repetitive, step back and say, ‘Could this be automated?’” asked Andrew Heumann, a designer at Seattle’s NBBJ.

It also raised the question of how architects respond to these issues at a core level.

“Are we applying the design process—and that sort of reasoning, methodologies, investigation—to our own problems?” Ouellette asked. “We’re very good at solving everyone else’s problems, but not our own.”

That said, the conversation generally tilted away from immediate answers and towards the value of interoperability and the need for collaboration between all members of the design and construction industry.

“This conversation is still relatively new,” said Nathan Miller, Director of Architecture & Engineering Solutions at CASE, “and we’re having it in an industry that, historically, does not move fast. But we need to break down silos of interest and discuss how to find and build business models and workflows that allow all of these different groups to interrelate better.”

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