||In times characterized by the growing "architectural criticism"; to the same extent as by
the helplessness of the anonymous user the communication process between
contractors, planner and users gains in importance. If communication is successful will
not only depend on the quality of the project but also on the means of conveyance, e.g.
visualizing or model representation. Can planning evaluation be effectively supported
by virtual reality (VR)?
The principal item of a full-scale lab preferably features a court-like facility where the 1:1
simulations are performed. Such lab facilities can be found at various architecture
education centers throughout Europe. In the early eighties the European Full-scale
Modeling Association (abrev. EFA, full-scale standing for 1:1 or simulation in full-scale)
was founded acting as the patron of a conference every two years. In line with the
conference title "Full-scale Modeling in the Age of Virtual Reality" the participants were
particularly concerned with the relationship of physical 1:1 simulations and VR. The
assumption that those creating architecture provide of a higher degree of affinity to
physical than to virtual models and prototypes was subject of vivid discussions.
Furthermore, the participants devoted some time to issues such as the integration of
model-like ideas and built reality thus uncovering any such synergy-effects. Thus some
major considerations had to be given to the question of how the architectís model-like
ideas and built reality would correspond, also dealing with user-suitability as such: what
the building artist might be thrilled with might not turn out to be the residentsí and usersí
everyday delight. Aspects of this nature were considered at the îArchitectural
Psychology Meeting” together with specialists on environment and aesthetics. As
individual space perception as well as its evaluation differ amongst various architects,
and these being from various countries furnishing cultural differences, lively discussions
were bound to arise.