Frank Gehry has never been one to rest on his laurels. His ever-evolving style has recast the field of architecture, and now after reinventing the way many of us look at design, he has set his sights on transforming the way that we collaborate. GTeam, as Gehry’s new product is called, is a cloud-based software that allows designers to share their work in a common space online in a common format.
Gehry Technologies (GT), the research and development team founded by Gehry Partners in 2002, revealed their latest project that looks to change the way designers, engineers and architects work together on a project. The program automatically translates files from Revvit, Autocad, SketchUp and others, making it easy to work side-by-side in a web-based space, regardless of how the design was created. With GTeam, projects can be edited real-time without the danger of over-writing other work in progress thanks to clash detection. Images can be previewed and rotated without having to download the file. Built-in Skype facilitates correspondence between designers and security levels can be adjusted to suit the needs of the project.
Collaboration among designers has been a challenge in the past. Multiple design programs, and even different versions of a single program, have resulted in projects that don’t always speak the same language. Andrew Witt, director of research for Gehry Technologies, commented on the project in Cadalyst Magazine, ”We were hearing from our customers that collaboration is difficult — it’s hard for people to get data in the same place at the same time.” What used to require time-consuming printing, scanning and mailing can now be accomplished with one tool. GTeam can even handle PDF files, Word documents, video files and 2-D pictures.
Gehry has dubbed the software as “Google Docs for 3D models” and says that he is “proud to have contributed to the creation of technology that will facilitate better communication and collaboration in building.” Prior to releasing the new technology publicly, Gehry worked with the software on several of his recent projects. Hundreds of other design firms, including Safdie Architects, Swinerton Builders and UNStudio, have played with the software as well. GTeam is currently available as a free preview, with pricing likely to be released in October.