Our 2016 Resolution – To Invent…with you!


Proving Ground is now a 6 month old company. Many of the themes present in our work today is the result of a much longer experience in the world of design, computation, and personal exploration with technology.

As 2016 kicks off, I’m excited to continue pursuing our ideas for changing processes in the building industry to be more data-driven.  Invention is going to be central to our success in achieving that goal.  We are excited to arm our clients with fresh new business tactics and create new workflows.  Our sweet spot is when our love of technology opens up new possibilities for creating value in the business of building.

So what is on the boards at Proving Ground today?  To kick off 2016, I wanted to share some of the things we are working on and hopefully we have the opportunity to collaborate with you on these ideas….

 Kanban for Architects and Engineers

Trello is one of my personal favorite applications.  It’s a simple project management app based on Kanban.  The website allows you to create and organize virtual boards and team task cards.  I use it for just about everything including keeping track of activities in my business, collaborating with my clients, and maintaining grocery lists.

We recently created a prototype interface for managing your Trello with Revit (a Rhino app is also in development).  The premise for these tools is simple:  we want to bring an agile project process to the place where designers are doing the work.  From within the modeling environment, users can access all of their Trello-based project information to track lists, create cards, update checklists.  We also have some exciting model integration workflows planned.

We’re looking for designers and teams to try out this tool and provide valuable feedback.  Let us know if you are interested!

Trello for Revit

Deploy Your Custom Design Tools

Grasshopper is the backbone of many computational design processes in architectural design.  As firms mature their implementation of computational capabilities, we have observed that the most successful teams are addressing how tools can be reused and and deployed to a broader audience.  We have recently created a new Grasshopper deployment tool called Freighter.

Freighter helps a computational designer bundle their Grasshopper algorithm (along with any required dependencies) into a sharable package.  The resulting tool can be started like a standalone application which will install any required plugins, launch Rhino, and run the Grasshopper definition in a single click.

We are already testing this with our clients and are seeing much success in how teams are able to share their custom tools with their colleagues.  Following a public beta this winter, we plan on releasing this tool as an open source project.  More info to come soon… if you would like to participate, send us a note!

Freighter for Grasshopper

Mine Your Building Data

There are many solutions available for exporting data out of your Revit model so you can use the data outside of the modeling environment.  We have been using SQLite in a number of different workflows recently as a lightweight database solution along with mainstays like Excel, XML, and JSON.  Along the way, we have also been developing our own codebase for rapidly exporting and querying model information.

The above video is a simple demo of some of the desktop solutions we are building to make the most out of the data available in the building process.  Here is a demo video of some tools and visualizations we have used with building data…

If you have the need for a custom solution for your building data, we’re all ears!

Mine Model Data

Are you interested in collaborating?