The Jeuns

Software Developed by Architects for Architects – Design and Construction Magazine

April 24, 2024 | by The Jeuns

Architecture teams have developed free and open-source technologies to address the gaps in existing software solutions. These tools aim to enhance project visualization, assess environmental impact, and simulate nonvisual light to improve design outcomes.

One such tool is ELLIPSE by Thornton Tomasetti. This cloud-based AEC data studio centralizes project-related information, offering 3D model viewers, 2D drawings, charts, and other data visualization widgets. ELLIPSE connects industry-tailored spaces to a common database, promoting vertical integration for design and construction teams.

KALEIDOSCOPE by Payette focuses on assessing embodied carbon emissions of facade assemblies. Architects can evaluate their facade concepts based on environmental impact categories, life span, and biogenic carbon. This tool provides carbon emissions data per square foot to help designers make informed decisions in the early design stages.

Another innovative software is LARK by ZGF and the University of Washington Applied Research Consortium (ARC). LARK simulates nonvisual light to enhance human circadian rhythms. Designers can customize spectral power distributions for various light sources and materials to support well-being and productivity.

Lastly, VARID by Foster + Partners and the University of London is a design toolset that utilizes VR/AR technologies to create awareness for users with visual impairments. VARID replicates vision loss symptoms in real-time, allowing design teams to experience and understand the challenges faced by visually impaired individuals.

These groundbreaking software solutions offer architecture teams valuable tools to enhance their design processes, improve decision-making, and promote inclusivity in design.


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