Digital Futures Workshop Outline

Designing for Mixed Reality Fabrication

As mobile phones and head mounted displays (such as the Microsoft HoloLens 2) become increasingly capable of accurately mapping and interpreting our physical world, traditional paper and screen-based media for communicating design and construction information will become superseded by precise, contextualised, shared and interactive mixed reality experiences. We are already witnessing this transformation occur within industry, as contractors seek to reduce the time, cost and risk of construction by working from mixed reality instructions that eliminate inefficiencies, redundancies, impracticalities and complexity of building from 2D information. Generating holographic fabrication instructions directly from design models opens up significant opportunities for design experimentation, as structures with complex spatial relationships or significant variation in form, structure, pattern, material and so on become more readily described in mixed reality. This workshop will introduce participants to our platform for creating real-time mixed reality experiences within Rhino and Grasshopper using mobile phones in order to explore these implications and share insights into immediate use cases for mixed reality in AEC.

Workshop Objectives and Outcomes

The workshop aims to give all participants a strong foundation in developing mixed reality applications within Rhino and Grasshopper in order to explore and prototype mixed reality design tools, workflows, fabrication approaches and construction logistics. After completing the workshop, participants should have a clear technical understanding of event based modelling in Grasshopper, how to leverage combinations of screen based and head-mounted mixed reality platforms and the advantages and limitations of mixed reality approaches to design and construction. Specifically all participants can expect to learn to:

  • Translate parametric design models directly to holographic construction information.
  • Build mixed reality user interfaces to streamline sequences of fabrication tasks.
  • Create and detect QR codes for part identification, placement and tracking
  • Develop multi-user collaborative applications with cross platform support Implement best practice for a mixed-reality-first approach to design and construction

Applications and design proposals developed by participants during the workshop will be presented and discussed using, Fologram’s virtual design studio space.

Workshop Schedule:

  • Day 01 - Develop an understanding of how MR has been applied to fabrication and design challenges, how to ensure that you are getting optimal functionality from the mobile phone, how to share what you see on the device with others and first hand experience of placing and interacting with holograms in Rhino. Learn to create QR codes for accurately locating holograms in space. Learn to view and manipulate parametric models in mixed reality.
  • Day 02 - Introduction to fabrication sequencing using Fologram. Learn how to create fabrication sequences in both Rhino and Grasshopper using Fologram, to create step-by-step fabrication instructions for timber bending and brick stacking.
  • Day 03 - Develop a design and fabrication workflow with mixed reality applications using Fologram’s tracking components and global variables in Grasshopper. Learn how to interact with your designs live in Fologram, augment manual tools for fabrication, and create and track custom QR codes to bring the physical world into parametric models.
  • Day 04 - Develop a subtractive fabrication workflow consisting of the Fologram tools developed over the entire workshop to carve and sculpt geometries in mixed reality. Curate your project outcomes as a virtual exhibition space

Each session will run for approximately 3 hours, and will begin each day at 04:00 GMT, and will run on the Fologram YouTube channel at