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Digital Engineering: The Skills For The Future

Posted by Rhys Phillips on January 19, 2021

As a civil engineering undergraduate, or any engineering undergraduate for that matter, we learn a huge amount about a huge amount. In just the first two years of my degree, I have studied structures, fluids, programming, CAD, pure mathematics, surveying, geology, architectural theory and so much more. Whilst most of us love this broad exposure to the world of the physical sciences and how the power of nature can be diverted for the common good, we can often find ourselves wondering how much of this is actually relevant and what else we might need to know.

Personally, I believe that a university engineering degree educates you to think logically about the world and solve complex problems with simple solutions. I love the exposure we get to different subjects and the passion of those who teach them. However, I also have an eye on the future and appreciate that the skills of tomorrow will not come out of a classroom. Think now as you read this; were the greatest lessons you’ve learned discovered in a lecture?

With this in mind, I have been slowly developing myself through extracurricular activities and learning throughout the course of my degree. Alongside the compulsory course elements, I have been on the lookout for the tools of the future.

In my discipline, civil engineering, the future is digital. The future is of off-site, modular construction with low carbon materials and serious thought to the operational environmental impacts of the structure. The future is also one of optimised design and parametric forms developed in modelling software with visual programming plug-ins. With this future in mind, I have been developing my 3D modelling, programming and visual programming skills.

But what I’ve found is that there are so many platforms, add-ins, tools and development environments out there that it’s hard to know which one to use. Nobody wants to invest valuable time and effort into learning a piece of software only to find that the company they join uses a completely different piece of software. So, imagine my surprise when I found a piece of easy to use software that not only worked with a whole host of platforms - it was designed for collaborative working.

Tridify allows the user to create real-time navigable renders that can be shared securely and easily. From architects sharing visuals with a client to designers sharing ideas with the team on-site, and from students adding a certain ‘je nais se quoi’ to coursework to departments showcasing their work, Tridify allows you to bring your designs to life and share them with other in the easiest possible way.

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