[RvsR]₂ – 3rd Parametric Design + Physical Computing Platform Workshop @ [ARC], University of Nicosia, CYPRUS

[RvsR]₂ Workshop will run @ [ARC] University of Nicosia from the 19th – 23rd of November 2012.


Workshop Brief:

During the 70s, Nicholas Negroponte suggested that architecture would be greatly benefited from the integration of computing power into built spaces, thus creating better performing and more rational buildings. In 1991 Mark Weiser published a paper in Scientific American titled, The Computer for the 21st Century , where he coined the term Ubiquitous Com¬puting describing a seamless integration of computers in our surroundings and everyday life. A few years later, in 1999, Neil Gross in an article in the Business Week suggested that: In the 21st century, planet earth will don an electronic skin. It will use the Internet as a scaffold to support and transmit its sensations. This skin is already being stitched together. It consists of millions of embedded electronic measuring devices: thermostats, pressure gauges, pollution detectors, cameras, microphones, glucose sensors, EKGs, electroencephalographs. These will probe and monitor cities and endangered species, the atmosphere, our ships, highways and fleets of trucks, our conversations, our bodies–even our dreams. Today, in 2012 we are not far from such futuristic visions. Our work spaces, our homes, our automobiles are all retrofitted with mini computers performing all kinds of tasks. At the same time our handheld devices (computers, mobile phones, tablets, etc.) are equipped with numerous sensors able to collect and process various sorts of data. The digital skin of Neil Gross is definitely inseparably interwoven to the physical world and it acquires new virtual layers and extensions year by year. At the same McCullogh highlights that: when information technology becomes part of the social infrastructure, it demands design consideration from a broad range of disciplines. Social, psychological, aesthetic and functional factors must play a role in design. Appropriateness surpasses performance as the key to technological successes. Appropriateness is almost always a matter of context. We understand our better contexts as places, and we understand better design for places as architecture.

While we can almost safely assume that information technology is nowadays part of the social infrastructure, architects and designers are soon to be called to take an active role in exploring and weaving considerable parts of the above mentioned digital fabric. As Andrew Payne mentions, Designers in the future will be called upon to create spaces that are computationally enhanced. Rather than simply design traditional buildings and then add a computational layer, it is better to conceive and design this integration from the outset.

Over the last fifteen years there has been a constant shift towards preparing the ground towards the above direction. During the process, design tools and methods have been reinvented and advanced digital construction and fabrication techniques have been applied in design. At the same time, the architect’s education and research fields have been expanded well beyond the traditional domain of architecture in areas like mathematics, robotics and computational engineering. Will this new emerging digital toolbox and the constantly expanded knowledge tank provide the means for realizing Negroponte’s initial propositions for better performance and rational? Can we even surpass performance and strive for appropriateness for better design in architecture?

In the above context, the 3rd workshop of the series will explore the notions of adaptability and interactivity in architecture and aims to expand beyond the use of the computer and digital fabrication, into robotics, electronics and physical computing platforms. The dyad reactive/responsive has been chosen as the theme for this workshop which aims to highlight the fine differences between the two terms. For the scope of the workshop, the property of Reactiveness is synonymous to impulsiveness and as such is lacking in processing as opposed to Responsiveness. The workshop will strive to highlight intelligence in systems and pose the problem of multiple contradicting parameters in digital design. Following [RvsR] and [DvsI] the [RvsR]₂ workshop will focus in creating physical interactive prototypes responding to certain parameters/information.

Grasshopper and plugin Firefly paired with Arduino programming language and computing platform will be introduced to students as possible tools for experimentation.


[RvsR]₂ Workshop Outcome:


Light Septums:

Team: Andras Botos, Safa Kadhem, Rossol Kadhem, Christina Poourkou, Ioannis Kyriakides


Run Kitsio Run [RKR]:

Team: Lefki Charalambous, Chrysanthos Yiakubiv, Marios Stavrinides, Yianna Hadjicosti


Weather Control Box:

Team: Antoniou Marios, Fotoula Hadjinikola, Rena Tsangari, Stavrou Eleni, Stephanie Zavalli


Sound Eliminator:

Team: Theokli Georgia, Darivianaki Maria, Nikos Georghoudes, Demetrios Pinakiotis


[RvsR]₂ Workshop Moments:

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