September 17, 2003

Evolving Architecture

Has anyone taken the world of cellular autonoma and cross bred it with architecture? Imagine a building as a set of competing priorities and preferences growing to fit the environment of its lot. The outside twisting to provide maximum sun exposure to the critical rooms, which are shifted in the virtual (pre-actualization) process to maximize air circulation.

The architect becomes an economist, controlling the dataset. What are the preferences of the target market? And the preferences of the rooms themselves. The master bedroom reaches out calling for more bathroom space, his and hers in its ideal building. But the plumbing arches back, the pipes must flow this way it says, while the living room makes its own case, "a bathroom near me will make the social life of this home that much better." Over in the corner the laundry room speaks softly, 30 square feet and I can increase the sale price by 10%. The architect softly curses, the fucking laundry room always seems to win, the developer controls those key monetary algorithms and weighs them far too high.

Each room has its goals, to exist for one, and then to pull towards the light. Southern exposure for that living room. Some bedrooms pull east, to rise with the sun, others run north, away from direct light. The bathrooms don't much care, although a few are inflicted with an obsession towards the natural light. The kitchens? What a temperamental bunch. Screaming and yelling for huge Subzero fridges and floating counter-tops. Sometimes they win, but when they lose they break hard, shuttered into spaces that closets wouldn't even fight for and the oven doomed for repurposing as a storage shelf.

This is true bottom up architecture, genetic codes for homestyles competing with the raw cost of materials and construction to form a very concrete equilibrium as the building gets actualized. Quite possibly it might make buildings dramatically more livable then the average ones we have today...

Posted by Abe at September 17, 2003 12:02 PM


neil spiller is a proponent of grown architecture that evolves to our needs.,23008,3377979,00.html

There is not much stuff online but 'liquid architecture' has for some years now been exploring the field of architectural design derived from (manipulating) datasets. This includes buildings that respond to it's user & evolving form.

This book is a good starter (but out of print)

also covered in this book Greg Lynn:

very interesting, much thanks.

btw, wilfried any RSS feeds for socialfiction?