Toolbox Updates

Version history and documentation of new content and other changes.
The Biomimicry Toolbox was first released in January 2015, for the launch of the Biomimicry Global Design Challenge. The purpose of this blog is to document notable revisions and new content as we continuously improve this resource.

2017 Refresh

In preparation for the 2017 Challenge year we have been making some substantial changes to the Toolbox. The METHODS section now features a new Design Spiral and a page for each step.

Minor clean up

The scoping section of the Integrating Biology and Design page was eliminated as it is redundant with the Scoping page. The Scoping page was updated accordingly to include minor content from the eliminated text. Additionally, the “Biomimicry and Other Design Processes” section of the “Integrating” page was moved to it’s own page under Methods.

Changes to Introduction

The one page Introduction has been restructured and modified slightly.

  • The “What is design?” section of the Introduction has been simplified and moved to it’s own subpage
  • The “Why we need biomimicry”  and “What is biomimicry” sections remain the primary content of introduction but their order has been reversed from previous structure; the intro now begins with “What is biomimicry” (makes a lot more sense that way, eh?)
  • A link to the Tree Media Biomimicry  film in the ‘Introductory Videos” section has been added
  • NEW “Biomimicry and other bio- terms” section added to “What is biomimicry” discussion; includes links to articles by Terrapin Bright Green and Biomimicry for Creative Innovation.
  • The video story about how whales change climate has been moved and is now part of the Earth’s Operating System section.

New content on scoping

A new section on scoping was added to the toolbox, along with two related worksheets.  The new content introduces how to form a design question and translate (“biologize”) it into terms that can be used to look for biological models.  Check it out here:  Scoping a Biomimicry Challenge.

New content/restructuring for nature’s unifying patterns

The section on nature’s unifying patterns has fresh content and a new layout.

Newly added:

  • 10 pages, each focusing on one of the patterns, with a full description and examples. You can also navigate between these pattern pages using a menu that appears on the right side of each of them.  Start exploring here.
  • 2 PDF documents: Nature’s Unifying Patterns (full text of all 10), and Nature’s Unifying Patterns: Biology Examples and Design Applications.


The main page for nature’s unifying patterns has been updated and subdivided. The content on Earth’s operating system was extracted into a separate page under Core Concepts. Nature’s Unifying Patterns was simplified to focus on the origin and use of the patterns.



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