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Complication is a failure to effectively disentangle the complexities of an idea. An iPhone is incredibly complex; using one is simple (for most). Awkward workout contraptions seen on TV infomercials at 3 a.m. are complicated, and that is one of the reasons they are rarely used with consistency. The most successful solutions are often the simplest solutions—the ideas that get you to say, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

When I was first introduced to tilt-up I was immediately struck by the simplicity of the method. I understand the practicality of building with small components (brick, block, dimensional lumber), as they are sized such that an individual can handle them. However, given the available technology, isn’t it simpler to build with larger components? Size is the basic advantage of tilt-up. We can do in one move what takes others ten, twenty or one thousand moves. The simplicity of the method is what attracts many contractors and developers; it is easy to understand. And while the engineering of the panels’ lifting design and the technology that allows for erection and bracing is highly complex, the method is free from the complications that come with many other building envelope systems. It is in this spirit of simplicity that we continue to refine the way we build with tilt-up.

This June, the Tilt-Up Concrete Association is hosting a series of talks in Dallas, Texas, presenting emerging technologies and innovative ideas with promising applicability for the tilt-up construction industry. The lineup is impressive. Each idea is rich in concept, well researched, and complex in formulation. At the same time, each idea is remarkably simple—free from the complications that deter would-be adopters.

Sorting through these innovative ideas and technologies will be the job of an expert panel and a local audience of tilt-up architects, engineers, contractors, suppliers and developers. Their thoughts will be published later this year. Which ideas will rise to the top? I’d place my bets on the most simple.

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TILT-UP TODAY, a publication of the Tilt-Up Concrete Association, is THE source for Tilt-Up industry news, market intelligence, business strategies, technical solutions, product information, and other resources for professionals in the Tilt-Up industry. A subscription to TILT-UP TODAY is included in a TCA membership. Subscriptions for potential TCA members are also available. If you would like to receive a complimentary subscription to the publication, please contact the TCA.