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Research Highlights

New Home Design Tool

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Many variables go into designing a functional, cost-effective and energy-efficient home. To assist homebuilders, Tim Hemsath, UNL assistant professor of architecture, and colleagues are developing HomeGener8, a home customization and design software tool that allows individuals to design a house tailored to their preferences and building site. While other home design software programs require an ability to negotiate different criteria, HomeGener8 uses algorithms that automate the process and provide myriad options. Site-specific customization also can take into account factors that maximize energy efficiency and minimize costs. Designers can use HomeGener8 to generate ideas, obtain information to aid in design or receive feedback on designs. Developers can use the software to reduce costs while creating uniqueness throughout a planned development. The Design Studio in the Jeffrey S. Raikes School of Computer Science and Management is collaborating on development. NUtech Ventures, the university’s technology development organization, has filed a provisional patent on this tool, which developers hope to commercialize.

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