Today’s dynamic of ‘upgrades’ encompasses the entire gamut of consumer goods, extending from products and devices to apps. Whether evolved from the Japanese ‘kaisen’ or any other form of  ‘continuous change for the better,’ it has come to stay! It is well established that the industry we are all associated with – the Built Environment – is essentially based on innovation, creativity and constant change. Yet, perhaps, it is time we evaluate whether this industry is reshaping itself adequately and appropriately, to the culture of effortless upgradability and adaptability. Traditionally, change has not come without pain and resistance – yet contemporary communities welcome and adapt to new versions and improvements with ease. In fact, users are uncomfortable when they cannot access the latest versions and products.


Two preliminary thoughts come to my mind in this culture of quicksilver change: “To follow trends, however innovative, is a sad substitute for genuine innovation,” and “Why park, when the road is calling you forward.” The Good Book says: “No one sews a patch of un-shrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, and a worse tear will result. Neither do men
put new wine in old wine skins. If they do, the skins will burst, the wine spill and the wineskins will be ruined.” Wine needs wine skins – gratefully. That is where our industry comes in. The challenge, then, is to provide a continuous supply of new skins: ones that can withstand the increased bubbling and fermentation of contemporary lifestyles. Skins that can improve the quality and
properties of the contents. Skins that could perhaps repair themselves, allowing extended usefulness. New skins that could be transformed easily after their initial function has ended, and skins that permit connectivity and create enriched blends.

The most significant and challenging aspect of creating new wine skins is evolving collaborative systems where experts in Prof. Mustansir Dalvi, Namita Singh, Karan Grover, Varun Kohli CN, Raghavendran , Dikshu C. Kukreja,  Reza Kabul, Niranjan Hiranandani, Sanjay Puri, Jurgen Wolf, Sandeep Khosla, Bo Boje Larsen, Manit Rastogi, related disciplines network – to create resonant symphonies, rather than one-man performances.

 

Digital media supports higher speeds of data gathering, interfacing and processing. Could we learn from Pharma, who have moved their development from ‘in anima’ to ‘in vitra’ and then on to ‘in
silica’ – reducing, in their context, the time from concept to completion? In fact, accidental discoveries or partial solutions, reached in specialized research, have often been transported effectively to a related, or sometimes alien, industry. Collaboration and sharing are no more viewed as threats to one’s intellectual property rights. Media overdrive brings state-of-the art visual solutions with ease, speed and amazing quality to our virtual desktops and mobile devices. What, maybe, needs to be augmented is the sharing of processes  – and that could result in visible solutions. Of utmost importance are the aspects of impact on society, behavior and, most of all, the health and safety of the user – and before that, the installer.

For those who have been chanting the mantra, “This is always how it has been done,” taking a hard look at what drives Gen Next, will enlighten us. Not only on the evolution of the human creativity process, but also on the changing expectations of a younger and more enlightened consumer of our services. We could safely say that it becomes the responsibility of those engaged in the formation of young, creative minds to prepare appropriate skins – which will provide supportive environments that enable young wines to mature. This could be achieved only with adequate feedback and exposure to the kind of energy that young minds are constantly bubbling with: “It’s our turn to learn.” We could extend this responsibility to those who are not involved in formal training – to accept that each and every one of us will have evolved some unique solution, however small and seemingly insignificant. With this speed of change, there is no time to reinvent the
wheel, so: “Now’s the time to stop and share.

Author :

THE SOAPBOX IS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR OUR ADVISORY BOARD MEMBERS TO EXPRESS THEIR OPINION ON AN IMPORTANT INDUSTRY ISSUE. THIS MONTH, CONRAD GONSALVES MULLS ABOUT OLD WINESKINS HOLDING NEW WINES AND THE INTOXICATING IMPACT OF THE QUICKSILVER CHANGE THAT ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN ARE SUBJECT TO

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