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9.9.14

Happy Birthday Pier 9

Today was #TremendressTuesday at Autodesk, in celebration of the 1 year anniversary of the Autodesk facility at Pier 9 in downtown San Francisco.  Pier 9 houses an AMAZEBALLS workshop as well as several of Autodesk's consumer-facing product teams like Instructables, Sketchbook Pro and Spark just to name a few.

We were all encouraged to show our creativity through what we wore to work today. Not one to pass up an opportunity to dress in costume, I broke out the same shirt and custom Converse shoes I wore when I ran Bay to Breakers earlier this year. 

My office is a few blocks away in the 1 Market Street location of Autodesk.  However, I happen to be a docent at Pier 9, meaning that if someone wants a tour I can take people through and show off all of the insanely cool tools that are available to Autodesk employees and Artists in Residence. To use any piece of equipment, users must be trained. Safety is the #1 focus. Depending on the tool, training ranges from several hours to several days. There's also a test kitchen with a commercial-grade Wolf range that I drooooooool over.

In addition to the test kitchen there are four main areas of the workshop. There's the 3D print shop, digital fabrication shop, woodshop, and metal shop. Less glamorous, but just as cool (to me anyway) is the industrial sewing equipment and an electronics lab.

Many people ask, "Why does Autodesk have all that stuff?" Pier 9 is part test facility, part makerspace, part R&D operation and part playground. People are fabricating art, gadgets and customer models with much of the same equipment that would be used in a production facility. Walking through Pier 9, one cannot help but get excited and inspired to make cool stuff and think about design in a holistic way.