September 2011 Newsletter (Issue 8.3)

Welcome to the third issue of the BioInspired! newsletter for 2011.  This issue includes articles on insights from interview with BID Community members, the second part of the Biomimicry in Higher Education Webinar overview, an interview with Randy Anway, a review of research on Biologically Inspired Design in manufacturing, and the announcement of two new BID Community projects.

This newsletter and the previous three issues are publicly readable.  A consolidated PDF has not been created for this issue - PDFs of selected articles are available as attachments to registered users.

Thanks to everyone who contributed to the newsletter! 

© Don Hammond/Design Pics/CorbisSummer has flown by, the leaves are changing and the weather is definitely turning cool in Southern Ontario. The last three months have given me an opportunity to chat with many of the BID Community members, listen to their ideas on bio-inspired design and get their perspectives on where the BID Community should be heading. The article What Defines the BID Community? is a summary of the discussions. The first member call explored a broad range of topics and turned into An Interview with a Bio-Inspired Architect (Randy Anway).

Almost all of the members felt that the BioInspired! newsletter should be available to the public, a change that will go into affect with this issue. Members saw value in the BID Community as a place to discuss issues and collaborate with other members who are genuinely interested in the field and committed to supporting each other. A good way to engage members is through projects, two of which are described in the Call to Action: Upcoming BID Community Projects article. This issue also includes Biomimicry in Higher Education Webinar Part 2 (Karen Verbeek) and a Research Review: Biologically Inspired Design (Shu, Ueda, Chiu, Cheong) exploring bio-inspired manufacturing and the process of bio-inspired innovation.

© Don Hammond/Design Pics/CorbisThe relatively small size of the BID Community membership makes it possible to 'just pick up the phone' and talk. I have had the pleasure of chatting with ten members over the last three months to get their perspectives. Although every member brings a unique background and set of interests, a few patterns have emerged in the following areas:

  • Personal Value of the BID Community
  • Community Contributions to BID
  • BID Community Initiatives
  • Growing Membership
  • Engaging Members
  • Website Initiatives

© ktsdesign - Fotolia.comThe June 2011 BioInspired! newsletter provided an overview of the Biomimicry Institute's “Biomimicry in Higher Education” webinar held in January and reviewed two of the presentations on interior design and methodologies. This issue reviews four additional presentations on environmental remediation, architecture and methodologies.

The full proceedings, including abstracts of two of the teaching modules, can be purchased from the Biomimicry Institute ($10, 79 page PDF).

© frank peters -

In late June, Randy Anway was the first BID Community member to be interviewed about his views on the BID Community. The conversation covered a broad range of topics on the theory and practice of biomimicry. With 20 years experience in architectural systems analysis and design, Randy is currently a candidate for the Biomimicry Specialty Certificate Program from the Biomimicry Guild. In his spare time, he tries to express the unseen through digital photographs.



© INFINITY - Fotolia.comShu, L.H., Ueda, K., Chiu, I., Cheong, H., 2011, CIRP Keynote Address on Biomimetics in Manufacturing, presented at the 61st CIRP General Assembly, Budapest, Hungary, August 21-27, 2011 (In Press).

This paper explores how manufacturing can be inspired by natural processes through case studies, research and a wealth of references. After an overview of terminology, the paper surveys a wide range of examples, presents general methods supporting biomimetic design, describes the design process of three case studies and closes with observations and insights. This article summarizes the key points of the article with an emphasis on process issues of particular interest to designers.

© Lim Jerry -

The Algae Competition has been a fascinating exercise in what it takes to practice bio-inspired design. Members have asked for other BID Community projects that are more manageable in terms of resource commitment. The following two projects have the potential to deliver tangible value to designers. They can be broken down into smaller sub-projects so that participants can better manage their involvement based on availability and interest. It is expected that the composition of the project teams will change over time.

If you have any other projects you would like to see the BID Community initiate, please let me know.

Thanks, Norbert


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