Perspectives on greener product development and manufacturing from Sustainable Minds, our partners, customers and contributors.

Life cycle assessment

On the Edge with Cadalyst - Webcast #1: Overcoming Environmental Performance Anxiety (Replay)

By Sustainable Minds on October 15, 2010

The first episode, featuring a distinguished panel of experts, focused on "Overcoming Environmental Performance Anxiety," a discussion that embodies the webcast series' ambitions of bringing a new point-of-view to the important issues facing the CAD and PLM worlds.

Panelists:

  • John Davies, Vice President, GreenBiz Intelligence, Greener World Media
  • Stephen B. Leonard, Design & Innovation Practice Leader, Alcoa Technical Center
  • Sridhar Condoor, Ph.D. Professor, Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering, KEEN Fellow, Saint Louis University
  • Manish Mehta, Ph.D., Executive Director of Industry Forums and Sustainability, National Center for Manufacturing Sciences

We hope you enjoy the replay >

Please join us for the series - noon ET, 9am PT
November 4 | Webcast #2: Why PLM Hasn't Taken Over the World. Register at http://www.cadalystedge.com/podcast.

Webcast: Overcoming ‘Environmental Performance’ Anxiety

By Sustainable Minds on October 9, 2010

Sustainable Minds’ Affiliate, Cadalyst, is launching a new webcast series with an edge, called “On the Edge with Cadalyst.” The premiere presentation, Overcoming Environmental Performance Anxiety, will discuss how going green can fuel product innovation and increase revenue. It airs live on October 14 at 12pm ET, 9am PT.
Register Now >

Typical webcasts today might include a PowerPoint presentation or software demonstration and often conclude with a sales pitch. A new webcast series from Cadalyst, called On the Edge, will be nothing like that.

On the Edge with Cadalyst will bring together designers, engineers, managers, executives, industry analysts, and hardware and software developers alike to exchange information, ask tough questions, and tackle issues that stand in the way of progress in the fields of manufacturing, AEC, and civil engineering. They’ll always come back to technology because that’s what Cadalyst is all about. But above and beyond that, this series will aim to be an innovative, open forum where people can gather to ask questions, answer questions, and even debate as they work toward the mutual goals of improving design and growing business.

SM's CEO on environmental sustainability as a product innovation driver

By Sustainable Minds on September 27, 2010

Watch Sustainable Minds CEO, Terry Swack give a short presentation at the recent 'AlwaysOn & STVP Summit at Stanford 2010, Meet the New Captains of Innovation'. Terry presents to an audience of Silicon Valley investors, journalists and technologists about why Sustainable Minds is the clear winner in bringing environmental sustainability to mainstream product development. Watch the video >

Farm designs greener medical devices

By Guest contributors on August 30, 2010

This post was submitted by guest contributor, Jim Rudolph, Industrial Designer at Farm in Hollis, New Hampshire. Farm recently announced their sustainable product development services.

Sustainability is part of good design. It is a natural extension of the traditional product development goals of efficiency and quality. Sustainable design strategies that lead to streamlined production, optimized materials usage, minimized weight, and reduced waste are all real opportunities for competitive and economic advantage for our clients.

Throughout Farm’s product development process, concepts are evaluated for attributes including usability, aesthetics, cost and manufacturability. Sustainable Minds LCA enables us to easily ‘prototype’ a concept’s life cycle impact and integrate environmental performance into our evaluation criteria as well. The software’s flexibility enables our project teams to make informed estimates about environmental impact very early in the development process while concepts are still evolving.

Greener Decisions

By Sustainable Minds on August 23, 2010

Originally posted on Modern Edge.

Environmentally sustainable design is at a crossroads. The insight and emotion that drove the passionate early adopters is giving way to data-driven decision making. New software tools and design methodologies are gaining traction and the result is a new level of innovation. But there’s still work to do for greener design methodologies to go mainstream. This is the take away from the dialogue on Thursday August 5th, at the Sustainable Minds and Modern Edge design reception at the Modern Edge Studio in PDX. Three main areas of discussion arose:

Credible Greener Decisions:
The question has changed from “How will we save the world?” to “How can we make credible decisions and substantiate progress?” It’s about putting credibility into the process of creating greener design. “Data is the common language; with good data multi-disciplinary teams can quickly come to consensus on the right steps to greener design.” It’s about changing emotion into rational action.

Designers Sailing to Sustainability

By Sustainable Minds on August 16, 2010

Originally posted on Modern Edge. This reception was held by Modern Edge and Sustainable Minds, Aug. 5, 2010, in Portland, OR.

50-60 Designers, Technologists and Educators from companies and organizations such as Nike, Motorola, Eastman, Yakima, Art Center, Children’s Hospital, University of Notre Dame, Ziba, Teams Design, and others, enjoy the patio at the Modern Edge Studio during a dialogue on improving sustainable design – hosted by Sustainable Minds and Modern Edge Inc. 25 of the first attendees to register arrived by sailboat from downtown Portland. We’ll be sharing the outcome from the dialogue in future blog posts.

See more pictures from event >

Sustainability signs are promising

By Sandy Skees on July 26, 2010

These days, the talk of a double dip recession and the lagging job market could obscure several positive indicators that provide good evidence that a significant and lasting change is underway.

Pay attention to the more important transformation that is affecting product development, business formation, job creation and the very way we live and work. In any number of areas, you’ll find upbeat indicators where you might expect to find a downbeat story:

Social Capital
A month after the Sustainable Brands 2010 conference in Monterey, CA, it's worth noting that many of the presenting and attending companies are truly integrating social impact into their sustainability efforts. 

For example, environment and ‘green’ issues, which have dominated sustainability discussions in the past, have given way to more practical explorations of new strategy, measurement, metrics and marketing initiatives. This has moved social programs from the periphery to the core.

Building A Sustainable Company — Part II

By Vijay Kanal on June 21, 2010

I began my last blog with a promise to explore some of the first steps companies new to sustainability should consider. I ended it by promising to explore some of the important frameworks companies should include in a more rigorous approach to sustainability. This is more than just a theoretical approach; we engage in these frameworks with our clients to help them achieve their sustainability goals.

Opportunity Assessment
Where exactly is your company on the sustainability curve? That’s a big question, and we work to break it down by functional department within the company. The objective is to prioritize the strategies and actions that will have the greatest impact today, tomorrow and long term. How much it will cost is an important assessment, both from an investment perspective, as well as a holistic (i.e. not just financial) approach to ROI.

Deepwater Horizon: the Cost of Greenality

By EarthPM on June 1, 2010

A welcome: the authors of the blog below – Rich Maltzman and Dave Shirley – are respected project management experts and have recently released a book about green project management. Sustainable Minds is proud to add these well-respected experts and educators to our roster of blog contributors. We look forward to their unique perspective as project managers, and will be picking up relevant posts from their illuminating website.

In our book we talk about the Cost of Greenality.

Sustainable Minds release 1.3 – Unit conversions

By Sustainable Minds on May 19, 2010

Release 1.3 of Sustainable Minds allows you to enter data in the units your BOM or project uses and includes a broad range of both metric and imperial units. For example, 0.25 kg of aluminum can now be entered as 0.25 kg, 250 g, or 0.00027558 short tons. Sustainable Minds then converts the measurements to a common unit to deliver the impact assessment results.

Unit conversion is available for the manufacturing, use, and transportation stages of the product’s lifecycle, for both manual part and sub-assembly entry and BOM import.