It all started when I was in a bar drinking a beer with my friends sometime in summer 2018. I found out that a friend of mine started learning IT and it was easy for him. That moment it was the spark that ignited my quest for being a software developer. But the idea had multiple arguments behind it, prior to that moment.
I was always good at mathematics and attended some Olympiad contests for several years in a row and it always felt natural for me to understand the logic and the technical part of things. I finished high-school with an almost perfect degree in math (9.75 from 10) and I was specialized in mathematics- physics class.
Either in architecture or design I tried to make small automation programs that helped me in my work, from calculations to design itself. I already had a good knowledge of CAD ( Computer Aided Design ) – for example in Rhinoceros I really enjoyed programming different design objects with the Grasshopper plugin. The fun part was that if you switched just an initial parameter of the 3D model, the whole model looked completely different.
When we started 3D printing, I learned a lot of things about robots, CNC machines, about how to operate them and service them. A robot that created magical pieces that’s all it was ! This magic was sought after by other companies aswell, companies that invited us to a lot of high-end meetings and conferences, IT gatherings, schools, etc. At one of those meetings at Hilton Palace there was an extensive talk about AI and its possibilities. Outside of the main conference room we had our stand but there were a lot of stands from Microsoft, UiPath and a lot of other key IT players in my country as well. Speaking with the people there I saw that everyone was nice, kind, relaxed and eager to help with information. The AI conferences were very interesting and I told myself: “If they can do it, why can’t I?” ( the programming that is)
In the place where I’m from, in the last years, there have been happening some contests for Startups from all the fields of activity, with prizes of 50.000 euro for the winners. Needless to say that from 300 candidates, almost all 10 that qualified for the main prize were IT-related ( except one). What does that tell you about the future and about the flowing of investor money? Hearing all those pitches from the startups on stage I saw that the jury was asking mainly about one thing: Scalability. To better understand Scalability – for example In architecture you make one house for one person. ( You work once, you get paid once). In programming, you make one app for potential 1000 buyers. ( You work once, you get paid x 1000) . Scalability == Fortune. This is magic !
I think programming can set you free and can give you a life of traveling and enjoying the good places of the earth. If you are good then you can have a lot of money as well. With the help of AI we can develop and create wonderful things, robots that can give us a better life, self driving cars, agriculture that cultivates itself, drones, financial and banking, etc. We can (re)conquer space, we can reverse planet pollution, we can solve a lot of problems and give back the time to people. People seem calm and nice. It was always easy for me to work in math and logic and now after more than 10 years from finishing high-school I will finally put it to good use!
On the other hand, what happened to my other pursuits? Why quit architecture? easy : 3D printing is magic, IT is magic, Architecture is not ! 🙂 Learning architecture is hard. You have to tweak your mind in a way to understand spatial creativity and learn a plethora of things: from history to material resistance, from painting to furniture building, from construction laws to form analysis. It develops your character and your brain. But when you start working, there is another story. Anyway, making the resume of the resume :
- There aren’t a lot of money in architecture for 90% of architects. 20 Years ago you couldn’t find 1000 examples of your dreamed home online. Now you can, so the architect became more of a drafts person that amends design flaws in the client’s design. Now the facade planner realizes the facade, the furbishing company creates the plans for furbishing, the interior designers realize the interiors. 10 % of architects are rich, the rest work for them risking not being able to pay the bills.
- Architecture can be automated 90 % ( If it can, It will! ). The creation part for a simple house can take you 5- 10 % from all the time you need to get a project ready for authorization (drawing). The drawing part is 95 %. That drawing part is just a series of IF- ELSE clauses applied to bi dimensional drawings. I am thinking about creating a automatic software for building simple housing with automated quantity calculation and plans/ facade creation.
- If you want to switch your country and live in another country for 5 years you have to adapt to building codes, legislation, you have to get back to school or make them accept your diploma – a lot of fuss. In programming, if you made 5 projects in JAVA for example then you can present them anywhere in the world and get a job.
What about 3D Printing? We’ve been in this field in the top 3 companies in our city. When we started there were another 100 people that had 3d printers, and the competition was almost non-existent. Now there are about 2000 only in our city. We gathered equipment of 100.000 euro, we started a school and we even paired with an investor and others to build a 7000 ft Makerspace! ( that is a story for another time) Business flourished these years. BUT competition multiplied and started lowering prices, bank rates went up, the virus erased all our events and although we still have orders, the money we can make could be a lot more. So why should I keep all of my eggs in one basket?