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PDF papers
id cf2011_p019
authors Haeusler, Matthias Hank; Beilharz Kirsty
year 2011
title Architecture = Computeré from Computational to Computing Environments
source Computer Aided Architectural Design Futures 2011 [Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Computer Aided Architectural Design Futures / ISBN 9782874561429] Liege (Belgium) 4-8 July 2011, pp. 217-232.
summary Drawing on architecture, urban digital media, engineering, IT and interaction design, the research presented in this paper outlines a possible shift from architecture designed through computation (any type of process, algorithm or measurement done in a computational matter) towards architecture capable of computing (developing, using and improving computer technology, computer hardware and software as a space-defining element). The research is driven by recent developments in four fields, as follows: (a) Architecture in its recent development has shifted from a planar box, as was the ideal in the modernist movement, towards complex and non-standard forms. (b) The design concepts of non-standard surfaces have been adopted into media facades and media architecture by liberating the pixel from its planar position on a screen [1]. (c) Advancements in pervasive computing applications are now able both to receive information from the environment in which they are used and to detect other devices that enter this environment [2]. (d) Developments in advanced autonomous systems such as Human Computer Interaction (HCI) or Human Robot Interaction (HRI), have produced intelligent systems capable of observing human cues and using these cues as the basis for intelligent decision-making [3]. Media fa_▀ade developments work in the direction of the above-mentioned four fields, but often come with limitations in architectural integration; they need additional components to interact with their environment and their interactions are both often limited to visual interactions and require the user to act first. The researched system, Polymedia Pixel [4] discussed in this paper, can overcome these limitations and fulfil the need for a space-defining material capable of computing, thus enabling a shift from architecture designed by computation towards architecture capable of active computing. The Polymedia Pixel architecture merges digital technology with ubiquitous computing. This allows the built environment and its relation with digital technology to develop from (a) architecture being represented by computer to (b) computation being used to develop architecture and then further to where (c) architecture and the space-defining objects have computing attributes. Hence the study presented aims to consider and answer this key question: é─˛When building components with computing capacity can define space and function as a computer at the same time, what are the constraints for the building components and what are the possible advantages for the built environment?é─˘ The conceptual framework, design and methods used in this research combine three fields: (a) hardware (architecture and design, electronic engineering) (b) software (content design and IT) and (c) interaction design (HCI and HRI). Architecture and urban design determinates the field of application. Media architecture and computer science provide the technological foundation, while the field of interaction design defines the methodology to link space and computing [5]. The conceptual starting point is to rethink the application of computers in architecture and, if architecture is capable of computing, what kind of methodology and structure would find an answer to the above core research question, and what are the implications of the question itself? The case study discusses opportunities for applying the Polymedia Pixel as an architectural component by testing it on: (a) constraint testing é─ý applying computational design methodologies to design space (b) singular testing - discussing the advantages for an individual building, and (c) plural testing é─ý investigating the potential for an urban context. The research aims to contribute to the field of knowledge through presenting first steps of a System < - > System mode where buildings can possibly watch and monitor each other, additional to the four primary interactive modes of operation. This investigation, its proposed hypothesis, methodology, implications, significance and evaluation are presented in the paper.
keywords media architecture, computational environments, ubiquitous computing, interaction design, computer science
series CAAD Futures
full text file.pdf (3,330,089 bytes)
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