Thanks to Franz Nahrada for alerting us to VOICED, which seems an important open design initiative:
“The vision of VOICED is to create an engineering virtual organization that addresses the challenges of synthesizing innovative conceptual designs of increasingly diverse and competitive engineered products and systems through the reuse of existing design knowledge in a cyber repository. As design advancement becomes progressively more difficult and risky to achieve, the ability to efficiently identify and avoid potential failures while archiving and promoting successful novel ideas becomes an invaluable technology that can only be effectively achieved through collaboration of industry and academia.
Analogous to the proliferation of open source computer code, which allows individuals and organizations to collaboratively develop software, the Virtual Organization for Innovative Conceptual Engineering Design (VOICED) is focused on fostering and gathering product information to help individuals, students, and industries create better and more competitive products. This approach to conceptual design allows geographically dispersed organizations to draw from and contribute to a shared set of prior design knowledge that supports a more thorough investigation of concept alternatives given diverse customer requirements.
If successful, the results of this research will improve our ability to create unique, innovative new products and processes. The ability to share ideas and solutions in a cyber repository will lead to new product and system configurations that would not be envisioned without this shared knowledge base. Ultimately, the project will provide the capability to quickly generate ? automatically or manually ? alternative concepts, thus shortening the development cycle. Finally, VOICED will create a forum for educators to share and exchange design course material, improve upon existing courses, and receive input from industry practitioners on design education.”