Reality Computing, Capturing Reality And Code Halos

I write and study often on the subject of digital transformation - the digital transformation of industries, markets, products, business models, etc. In brief, digital transformation is about the impact that collected and analyzed data can have when used to enhance business processes and workflows. If Amazon knows your preferences for particular books and films based upon captured data, then they can apply analytics to predict related books and films that you may like. This improves sales. This is a simple example, but let me tell you what I learned yesterday in sunny and warm San Francisco about more complex applications.

"Digitize the physical world" is the slogan of the Reality Computing team at Autodesk that I met with yesterday. This team focuses on transforming design processes for physical environments and objects by starting with reality. What does that mean?  Rather than starting with a blank screen in a 3D modeling app when redesigning a manufacturing floor, use a 3D scanner to capture "reality" as a first step and work from there. This enables you to start your 3D design process from captured data (reality) so you can design in context. The context is you have an exact 3D model of your design area before you even start the redesign.

Designing from reality (scanned data) enables you to be more productive and accurate. Designing in context is powerful. You start with an immense collection of data that can render a 3D model of your object or working environment and edit, rather than recreate it from a blank screen. This data becomes the building, landscape or object's "Code Halo."  

The "Code Halo" data about a floor plan and layout of a store can be combined with traffic flow data to analyze and understand how shoppers shop. Where do they walk, stop, learn, research and what do they buy at what time of the time, day, week, month and year.

Capturing reality, is what mobile apps and websites can do with online shopping. They can capture locations, actions, user preferences, shopping habits, etc. Entire new business models are being created weekly based on capturing data, analyzing it and using the results to offer improved and hyper-personalized services.