MindForge Update V by Stokes McIntyre

I hope all goes well with you. I can’t believe it’s already December. MindForge has been busy cranking away on three primary fronts. Here’s an update. 

Construction LifeSaver (CLS)

Since our last update, MadPow has been working on a plan and content for the overall program and the CLS Working at Heights. We are in the final stages of this project and MadPow will deliver before the new year. 

The MadPow Deliverables include the following documents:

Construction LifeSaver Design Strategy

Behavior Change Strategy Playbook
(provides a deep dive into the strategy)

CLS Module Content

Working at Heights Test Plan

The final document that MadPow will add to this list will be a detailed design specification document and script that will guide us through the production of the course media. 

In the new year, we will be testing and vetting the content. 

CLS Signal Person Training VR (SPT)

While the CLS Program focuses on behavioral change across all trades, we are also testing the idea of developing skill-specific training. This skill specific training would be infused with the CLS mindset. This means we would not only teach the worker the skill, but also teach them safe behaviors that support the skill and promote safe behavior on the work site.

Our first skill training product will be CLS Signal Person Training VR. This training program is intended to be released for VR only. In the program, our virtual mentor, SAM, will teach users how to use hand, voice and audible signals to signal cranes. The users will learn what they would typically learn in an NCCCO Signal Person Training course including qualification and requirements. The user will learn about the physical limitations of cranes and will get to experience, first hand, what it’s like to be a signal person in hazardous crane operations. We will enhance typical Signal Person Training with CLS Safety Best Practices, teaching a user to navigate dangerous scenarios involved in Working at Heights, Working in Confined Spaces, etc.

Workers that earn a SPT Badge from MindForge will be master crane signalers and will have the capability to recall signals instinctually.

Our team is working hard on the SPT prototype which we expect to deliver by end of year. 

Here are some images of the SPT artwork.



This is the trailer where users will begin their training sessions. 


At the beginning of each training session users will open their locker and put on their PPE. If they don’t put on all their PPE, SAM will give them a talking to. 

Here are some of the cranes the users will be working with:

MindForge Platform

Both CLS and SPT will be delivered via the MindForge platform - which is also under construction here at MindForge. We plan to deliver a prototype by end of the year.

The prototype will include the following functionality:

  • Profile system that will allow workers and companies to fill out and manage their profiles.
  • Content library that will allow users to download and play the SPT prototype.
  • API that allows the SPT training application to deliver user progress updates to the platform.

In the new year, we will begin user testing of the prototype.

The MindForge platform will have the capability to deliver three types of content:

  1. Custom training applications or videos that companies would like to distribute to their workforce
  2. MindForge applications such as CLS or Signal Person Training VR
  3. Third party training applications

We will seek out best in class construction training to add to the MindForge platform.

Purdue University

Pepper Construction connected us with Purdue University to discuss opportunities to collaborate. Purdue’s Envision Lab and Construction Safety department received an OSHA grant to build a VR training simulator focused on working at heights. Bill, Shahin and Stokes visited Purdue had a great discussion with Dave Murphy and Mike Alder, from Pepper Construction; George Takahashi, Tech Lead of the Envision Lab; and James Jenkins, a professor at the School of Construction Management. We discovered several ways we can potentially work together and will continue to explore these opportunities.

MindForge Team:

The team expanded since the last update. Currently on staff at MindForge are:

Michael Caito-Khurshid – Business Analyst

Jack Urban – Senior Engineer / Dev Ops (Platform)

Harald Sorenson – Front End Developer (Platform)

Shawn Nicholson – Senior Software Engineer (Training Products)

Connor Fahy – Software Engineer (Training Products)

Tyler Wallace – Software Engineer (Training Products)

Matt Muzzy – 3D Modeler

Jeremiah Garay – 3D Animator

Dusty Jenkins – Content Writer

Hilary Dover – Office Manager

Shahin Aftabizadeh – Division Lead, Head of Ops

Stokes McIntyre – Division Director

We have one additional hire to make – a Game Designer - before we are fully staffed. This staff will take us through 2018 as we build out the MindForge Products.

For those that sent us sample project plans. Thank you! We are using those project plans to break down and understand specific tasks on construction projects. And, thank you all for your continued support. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to reach out.

All the Best,

The MindForge Team





MindForge Update IV by Stokes McIntyre

I hope goes well with you. We’ve had a busy couple of months since our last update.

We are focusing our curriculum efforts on three modules that will launch as part of our pilot in Q1 2018. We will work on these modules concurrently. 

The three modules are Working at Heights, Hazardous Energy Sources, and Signal Person Training. 

Working at Heights and Hazardous Energy are part of the core curriculum for Construction LifeSaver. Signal Person Training is a stand-alone product that will prepare Users for both OSHA and NCCCO certification as well as apply CLS safety best-practices through a library of hazardous scenario lessons. All three products will be accessible via our training library, MindForge. 

We’ve contracted with a behavioral design firm - MadPow – to architect the CLS curriculum plan. MadPow conducted our behavioral research and it only makes sense that we take the next step with them to design our curriculum.

If we were designing a house, the curriculum plan would be our master plan and the Working at Heights module would be a room in the house. The CLS curriculum plan will indicate how the curriculum will flow, how much training will be required and the training frequency needed for maximum retention and mastery.

Once the curriculum plan is complete, MadPow will then dive into the Working at Heights module and develop the specific content for that module. One of MadPow’s deliverables will be a template for creating the rest of the CLS modules. You can review the MadPow scope of work here. 

While we are working with MadPow on the Curriculum plan and Working at Heights module, the MindForge VR Studio will be working on the Signal Person Training product. Signal Person Training is a Virtual Reality simulator that trains workers from basic to advanced levels by performing the physical actions and guiding Users through true to life hazardous scenarios. Through our Signal Person Training product, workers will learn basic signals, train for compliance-based certifications, and gain in depth experience as they are guided through life-like scenarios. Our goal is to train the frontline worker in a way that will prepare them for the multitude of hazards, conditions, and environments that can lead to SIFs on the worksite.  

We’ve contracted with consulting firm Safety Training and Compliance (STC) to provide on call subject matter expertise as we develop our training curriculum for both CLS and Signal Person Training. STC comes highly recommended by the ACIG Safety Team. STC’s scope of work will include:

  • Defining end state worker behavior.
  • Defining key content to include in program.
  • Assist in the development of a teaching approach that supports content.
  • Develop specific and detailed examples of scenarios that demonstrate dangerous situations and how to resolve those scenarios.
  • Review design documents for realism and accuracy
  • Review CLS and Signal Person Training products for realism and accuracy. 
  • Answer questions that arise during the process. 

Research Findings
Our team is working on report that will convey the findings of the safety insights survey. 

Technology Team
The MindForge Unity team has initiated its preliminary build, focusing on Environment design, Vehicle and Avatar design, and motion-capture technology to track a User's head and hand movements as they train in our simulators. They are working out how users will engage in the environment, identify potential hazards, and nullify dangerous scenarios - what we call our “secret sauce”. It’s very exciting to see first-hand how users will be able to interact with equipment and situations in a first person and VR environment. Our simulators are designed to incorporate real world physics that provides Users with an experience that replicates real-world scenarios. 

Here’s one of our developers driving a scissor lift in the VR environment. 


As our Unity team continues to develop simulators for workforce training, our platform team is working on the MindForge system. Because all products will be purchased, updated, and launched via the MindForge application, we are able to track certifications, continuing education progress, and required training for any employee with a MindForge profile.

The MindForge profile has been designed to allow individual workers to upload outside certifications (OSHA 10, NCCCO, etc.), input professional skills, and highlight trade specialization. From a company level, this means an employer will have the ability to query their workforce for skills, trades, and/or certifications as well as assign and track required training – all through the MindForge app!     

SAM stands for Safety Assurance Method and it’s also the name of the avatar that will guide users through our curriculum. The MadPow research indicated that front line workers prefer to be taught by a mentor on the job. We intend to mimic the experience of on-the-job mentorship and Sam helps us do that. Sam will speak to the user - providing explanations, pointers and encouragement. Below is a peek at SAM. Through SAM, we will offer Users direct mentorship of best-in-class safety training.


Title Change for Shahin Aftabizadeh
Shahin joined IRMI as a project manager for the Construction LifeSaver project. Since joining in January, Shahin helped to build the foundation for what will be a new Division of IRMI called MindForge. Shahin needed a new title to reflect his growing responsibility. Shahin’s new title is Division Lead, Head of Operations.

New Staff
Hilary Dover joined the MindForge Team as Office Manager. With the addition of Hilary, our core team is in place and we are cooking with fire!

CLS Update III by Stokes McIntyre

I hope you've had a great summer so far. 

It's been moving very fast over here for us on the CLS Team. There's a lot happening as we work to build a team and start work on developing our first pilot of the program. 

Here's an update:


The MadPow research project is complete and last week MadPow delivered their report on a call with a number of our design partners. If you missed the call you can view the presentation here. We are in the process of distilling the research report into actionable insights that determine how we build out the training. You can review the actionable insights here

We are also in the process of analyzing the data we collected from the Safety Insights Survey. 96 people filled out the survey. Thank you for your participation!


We’ve landed on a set of names for the products we intend to build. The training product that targets SIFs will be called Construction LifeSaver (CLS). We will be trademarking CLS as a certification. We are also building a workforce management software that we’ve named Site-Smart. We are in the process of defining the specific functionality for Site-Smart. More about that below.

Both CLS and Site-Smart will live under a banner called MindForge. BST research shows that our brains can be the biggest job hazard. With both CLS and Site-Smart we intend to forge and support strong minds that will help front line workers and supervisors stayed focused on safety and quality. 


We’ve been hard at work on the curriculum for CLS. We are close to completing a content outline for Module 5 - Hazardous Energy Sources. Module 5 will be the focus of our pilot. We’ve also kicked off conversations with MadPow to help us architect the overall training structure and behavioral modification approach. 

In the research, front line workers have said they prefer to be trained on the job and in person.  First person immersive experiences will help us get close to that type of experience. As result, we are focusing a lot of effort on VR technology that will put workers on a virtual job and allow them to practice the OODA Loop. We are not alone. Bechtel launched an immersive training simulator for it's workforce. Read more. 

We are currently interviewing candidates for our Construction Curriculum Manager. Here’s the job description. If you know anyone that would be a good candidate, send them our way! 

MindForge Development Team 

We’ve wrapped up the hiring of our MindForge Development team. We have an amazingly talented crew ready to start building CLS and Site-Smart. Here’s a snapshot of our development team.

Dean Gibson - Applications Architect with over 25 year’s experience engineering software and games. 

Shawn Nicholson - Senior Engineer with 15 year’s experience in 3D MMO gaming.

Connor Fahy - Jr. Engineer with VR experience in museum exploration/learning technology.

Tyler Wallace - Jr. Engineer in 2D/3D mobile free-to-play space.

The team will work, at first, on experimenting with Unity VR environments and user input paradigms for our three identified platforms: mobile 3d, mobile VR, and desktop VR.  Additionally, groundwork on character/avatar design and functionality within the environment and user interface (including user profiles and ZeroRisk data collection) will also be explored in the initial ramp up period of the application.

The MindForge team will work out of the Columbus office. We are working on a project to optimize our space to host a development team. You can check out pics of the office here. If you find yourself in Columbus, OH. Come see us. 

Next Steps:

With the research, complete (though we’ll always be researching) it’s time to initiate the third part of design partner scope document - Product and Business Model Validation. A big part of building the product is understanding how our users do certain things and what their pain points are so that we can build a product that is most useful to them. This is particularly true for the Site-Smart software that is intended to help companies like you manage front-line workforce. As a design partner, this is where you can be tremendously helpful. In the next few days we will be reaching out to our Design Partners to set up a requirements gathering call. this will be a 30-minute call where we ask you some questions. We’ll send out a list of questions in advance. 

If you have any questions or comments, please let me know. 

Thank you for your support and input! 

All the Best,

Stokes and the MindForge Team

CLS Update II by Stokes McIntyre

Below is latest from Construction LifeSaver. 


Behavioral research and design company MadPow wrapped up the last on site interview and delivered their findings in a comprehensive report. We are happy with the report and it will be a great asset to help us determine the best way to approach the training that will target SIFs. 

We are setting up a webinar for MadPow to present its findings to the Design Partners. We’ll be in touch to see what works best for your schedule and then will send out an invitation to the webinar. 

Our instruction designer, Julie Dirksen, is reviewing the MadPow report and we’ll be working with Julie to take the next step towards a CLS curriculum. 

As you all know - the Safety Insights Survey is under way. Thank you all for your help with this. 

ZeroRisk Assessment

One facet of our engagement with you is around the ZeroRisk profile. Our plan was to conduct some research to determine and validate a ZeroRisk profile benchmark for safe workers. 

To achieve validated results, we needed our design partners to have collected objective data around a worker’s safety and quality performance. After conversations with design partners, it became apparent that objective data around worker performance does not exist at this time.  

We’ve decided to delay the ZeroRisk study until we launch the CLS application. Our plan is to build the ZeroRisk profile into the CLS application and collect profile data as users sign up for the platform. Over time, we can explore how to pair the ZeroRisk profile data with other data to develop an accurate benchmark. Ultimately, the ZeroRisk profile will help us target workers with relevant training content and provide employers valuable intel to better position workers for better safety and quality performance. we’ll provide more detail about this later. 

Despite pushing the study to a later date, Design Partners have free access to the ZeroRisk assessment. If you’d like to learn more about take advantage of the ZeroRisk profile to support your hiring process, please contact ZeroRisk CEO / President Mike Poskey.  

CLS Team

We made our second hire for CLS - our software architect Dean Gibson. Dean has over twenty years’ experience developing games and applications with much of that development in the Unity platform. Unity is the platform on which we will build the CLS application. Among other capabilities, Unity will allow us to deliver the training via smart devices, computers, TV’s, game consoles and VR experiences. 

Dean is in the process of interviewing a lead engineer and additional developers. Once we have our development team in place we will begin building the CLS platform that will deliver the training material and functionality. 

We are currently looking for a Curriculum Manager to bring on board. You can check out the job description here. If you know anyone that fits the bill and might be interested, let us know! 

CLS Office

CLS is currently configuring an office space in downtown Columbus. The office will complete at the end of June and we’ll be ready to rock and roll. 


We are currently working on a content prototype for the training modules based on the Lifesaving Commitments. The prototype module focuses on Isolation of Hazardous Sources.  The prototype will demonstrate our approach to the training, how the content flows and how we present the material in the context of the OODA loop. We’ll be looking to get your feedback on the prototype in the near future. 

Moving Forward

Soon we will be diving deeper into the application, content and brand development. To make sure the output is relevant to you and the front-line workers we need your input. 

I’d like to propose using micro surveys - surveys with 5 questions or less - to get input on specific things we are working on. It could be that we are exploring a new name for the product, testing product ideas or looking for specific information to include in our training courses. We think that micro surveys will be the most efficient way to get quick feedback from you and your team. Occasionally we can schedule calls to discuss topics more in depth. Let me know if you have any issues with this approach. 

If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know. 

We appreciate your participation! 

All the Best,

Stokes and the CLS Team 

CLS Update I by Stokes McIntyre

Design Partners:

I am writing with an update on the Construction LifeSaver Project. We very much appreciate your participation in this project and we look forward to working together to try and pick the lock on reducing Serious Injuries and Fatalities. 


Right now we are focused on research that will help us define our training curriculum. We’ve wrapped up 2 of 3 on site interviews with Design Partners Haskell and Nabholz. Next week, the research team will be in Los Angeles on a Pankow site. Behavioral design firm - MadPow out of Boston - is conducting the research for us. After interviewing approximately 45 front line workers, Mad Pow process the data using a method called the Com-B model. Processing the data will help us define “interventions” or lessons that we can create to address specific behaviors that lead to SIFs. 

We are also putting the finishing touches on a behavioral insights survey that we can deliver on online. We developed this survey with the assistance of MadPow. We’ll be connecting with you soon to get your feedback on the survey and discuss how we might roll out the survey to front line workers. The data we gather through this survey will be instrumental in helping us build training with increased efficacy. 

Another aspect of the research revolves around building the ZeroRisk Profile into our course logic system. The ZeroRisk Profile is based on the science of formal axiology. Axiology is the scientific system of identifying and measuring value. The ZR Profile is one means by which an individual person's propensity and capacity to value may be measured. It is the person's structure of value (the road map and filtration system a person uses to think, evaluate, and make decisions) that results in personality, individual perceptions, and decisions. In common parlance, a person's structure of value is how that person thinks, or their emotional intelligence. 

To make sure we put the ZeroRisk profile to best use, we will be conducting a Construction Industry Safety and Quality Study that helps us objectively define safety and quality benchmarks. 

As a Design Partner you have free access to the ZeroRisk assessment. If you’d like to learn more about take advantage of the ZeroRisk profile to support your hiring process, please contact ZeroRisk CEO / President Mike Poskey.  

Course Content

We continue to work with ACIG and our Instruction Designer Julie Dirksen to research and develop course content based on the 12 Life Saving Commitments, SIF Precursors and other SIF related research. 

CLS Team

The Construction LifeSaver Project made its first hire in January - bringing on board Shahin Aftabizadeh. Shahin is a digital project manager who lead software development teams at JP Morgan, Rolls Royce and Deutsch Bank. Shahin has a background in cultural anthropology and worked for the State Department. Shahin knows how to drive technology projects, has a good grasp of cultural nuance and has worked and trained for dangerous environments. All of these attributes make him great person to help us move the Construction LifeSaver Project forward. We are excited to have him on board. 

We are currently recruiting a dedicated software development team that will sit in our Columbus Office and focus on building the Construction LifeSaver technology platform. 

CLS Technology

We’ve developed a roadmap to get the CLS product to minimum viable product (MVP) stage. The first stages of the build will focus on the platform that will help us deliver our training content. The platform will be built using a software environment called Unity - which is used to build and distribute some of the most popular video games. Unity provides us an amazing amount of flexibility - allowing us to deliver our content and applications to a multitude of platforms including phones, tablets, desktop computers and video game consoles. Unity allows us to collect and manage data and gives us room to grow our training from simple interactions to a virtual 3D experience. We look forward to demonstrating our technology. 

Thank you again for being such an important part of this mission. Please feel free to get in touch with any questions. 

All the Best,

Stokes and the CLS Team