Our First Year as Outer Labs

Karl Garske
Co-Founder, CPO

Outer Labs was a bit of a leap of faith, as most ventures are.

Back in 2018, our co-founders had an opportunity to work with an ambitious partner leveraging our experience with different AEC technologies. The project was refreshingly practical in its use cases. Many would have been tempted to spend on flashy new technology to showcase innovation. Instead, the focus was largely on activating data, harvested by the tools and experience widely abundant on an existing team. It was a reminder that companies that figure out how to master data and codify their existing workflows will have deeper insights, and more time to experiment with their buildings.

Emerging techniques with modular, generative, and computational design have the potential to be truly revolutionary once they become more approachable, so the full spectrum of stakeholders can participate. Great products will be built. But we risk failing to see how we get from here to there. For now, it’s clear we can work shoulder to shoulder in the design, construction, and operation of buildings so we can think critically about ways we help our clients improve their long term decision making. So it’s great when we find ambitious folks to help us bring new technology into their teams and processes.

We’ve learned that rolling out mission-critical solutions can be a tall order for our clients because the existing tech is often difficult to leverage without expertise in a wide range of software engineering and user experience disciplines. It’s been fun to work with our clients to learn what roadblocks they’re dealing with and connect their information and processes in strategic ways. Thoughtfully weaving together the latest software design principles with the latest AEC design techniques has already yielded some stunning results.

To do this, we’ve brought together a team of entrepreneurs, makers, and innovators. We’re geeks who like to get under the hood and prod at the underlying issues that manifest as unaffordable housing, environmental change, and dysfunctional spaces. We’re architects, engineers and construction professionals who prefer to take a more proactive approach as technology begins to play a bigger role in the craft. It’s a critical time for our respective disciplines to join forces. We share a drive to think holistically about our approach and get the best results from the things we make.

This leaves us with a fairly obvious decision to engage our community. There’s a vibrant and collaborative spirit among our peers, and an appetite to learn from one another. That will be the point of our new blog — to bring new and useful observations to the foreground.

We look forward to sharing what we learn and plan to explore creative thinking out in the open where we can test assumptions and spark more dialogue.

Our leap of faith has turned into a deep dive, allowing us to live, learn, and apply our knowledge. It’s shaping up to be an extraordinary journey on the outer-edges of AEC, and we hope you enjoy our stories.

Please be sure to follow us to stay in touch.

Content originally published by outer labs

May 30, 2019

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