$250 000 prize for best 3rd world lab design

Computing

AMD and Architecture for Humanity have announced a prize of $250 000 for the best design for a computer lab that can be adapted and implemented in third-world countries. The Open Architecture Prize is the largest prize in the field of architecture and is designed to be a multi-year program that will draw competition from design teams around the world.

The winning designs will be built as part of the prize and in alignment with the 50x15 Initiative, a program founded by AMD which aims to connect 50 percent of the world's population to the Internet by 2015.

"The Open Architecture Prize delivers on Architecture for Humanity's vision of encouraging collaboration and challenging designers to reach beyond the traditional bounds of architecture to develop innovative solutions that improve global living conditions," said Dan Shine, director of the 50x15 Initiative, AMD. "The creative designs developed in this competition will contribute to the 50x15 Initiative's ambitious goal of connecting 50 percent of the world's population to the Internet by 2015."

After the winning designs are built, the plans will be made openly available through the Open Architecture Network, an open source online gathering place which brings together architects, designers and community organisers to freely share blueprints, ideas and resources for improvement projects in areas affected by geo-political, environmental or economic hardship.

"For far too long many great award-winning designs have gone undeveloped," said Cameron Sinclair, executive director and co-founder of Architecture for Humanity, a charitable organisation that seeks architectural solutions to humanitarian crises and provides design services to communities in need. Currently, projects include the reconstruction of homes on the Gulf Coast, rebuilding after the South Asia Tsunami and the construction of healthcare facilities in Sub-Saharan Africa.

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