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Maintenance Mapping the Future of Building Architecture?



The medical industry is currently in the midst of a dramatic reinvention, and it’s all due to an expanding field known as genomics. Here, scientists and doctors collaborate to review an individual’s genome (i.e. the entirety of their DNA) and identify risk factors based on that individual’s specific biological “code.”


Just like how a large volume of genomes, or “genetic data points,” is required to identify this risk factors, the same also can be said of buildings. In short: We can use a high volume of data points, like how doctors use genomes, in order to map several problems in the spaces we use. 


We believe that buildings, like the human body, experience wear and tear differently based on how they’re used. And, as with health care of the past, facility managers have always treated buildings for symptoms in real time, as problems arose. But, what if someone developed a better means of assessing repair cycles?


Or, better yet, what if there was a way to identify building materials, layouts, and other aspects of architecture which led to both optimal and suboptimal returns over time? The result would potentially be a complete revolution in building design and construction.


At CrowdComfort, we’re taking these questions seriously. We genuinely believe there’s a way to gather new, intelligent data about the ways in which buildings age. What’s more, we’re confident that—over time, and given a large enough sample size—this information will provide deep insights into how different materials, maintenance schedules, and usage affect both the efficiency and longevity of a building.


For example, the Labor Bureau of Statistics estimates that there are over 4,000,000 maintenance employees working in the United States today. That’s 4,000,000 data points, or “building genomes” (we love our analogies), that can potentially be recorded and analyzed. This can be done through the various tech trends and platforms that enhance data collection and productivity. Give occupants the same power, and that’s even more data. 


In practice, this means applying our technology in new ways to help organizations map all aspects of their facility management, creating heat maps for an array of different issues (including everything from comfort to utilities).


It also means digging deeper into the composition of a facility so that we can correlate issues with different building materials…perhaps even coordinating multi-year A/B testing of substrates. As data accumulates over weeks and months—in different climates and for different work environments—this information will eventually offer the “big picture” necessary for helping architects make tough decisions on how to build new spaces.


Of course, this is all early thinking, and there’s plenty left to refine. But, the promise of drawing huge data from real-life facility management has us excited, and it’s a space we’ll continue to explore!


As we continue to explore “The Quantitative Collection of Building Experience,” what are your questions or insights on “real-life reporting” facility management? 

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