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In the Fold: Autodesk news and opinions

What We Like This Week: Wooden Airplanes and Instant Houses

March 16, 2018

by Mouncey Ferguson

Advanced materials, solid employment advice for kids, and a hip new incubator for manufacturing startups—that’s what caught our eye this week.

  • The 3D-printed life. We’re pretty sure it starts with living in a 3D-printed house (that can be made in a day, according to Quartz). When you get cabin fever, hit the road in a 3D-printed trailer. When even that becomes too much, split for the hills, lose your way, and get saved by a 3D-printed rescue drone.

Credit: New Story / Icon

  • Jet planes made of wood? Maybe now it can finally happen, thanks to this research from engineers at the University of Maryland, College Park, that made wood as hard as steel. (Thanks to Architect Magazine for the find.)
  • Work itWe liked this frank conversation with two labor economists who co-authored an important Brookings Institute paper on work in the world of increasing automation. Perhaps the best part was the advice for children if they want a good job in the future. (Nod to Axios: The Future of Work for this link.)

“If I were a parent, which I am, and I gave advice, and hypothetically my kids listened to me, I would recommend that they choose a career that draws on a body of expertise, something that requires judgment and creativity. That could be medicine, it could be law, it could be design, it could be managing other people. Then compliment that expertise with expertise in human interactions. – David Autor, Labor Economist

  • AI on the make. More products to produce and tighter delivery windows—how do manufacturers make it happen? With machine learning, according to Forbes.
  • Everyone likes PIE. Something’s happening in Portland, OR other than rain, great coffee, and the next cool pair of Nike sneakers. The Portland Incubator Experiment Shop has opened (with support from Autodesk) to guide manufacturing startups through the prototyping and manufacturing phases of their product. They’re looking for companies that can have a product ready for fabrication in 6-12 months. The first cohort starts in May.

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