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FEB – JUNE // ‘Monthly’ Update

Hello World!

I am here, having not thoroughly abandoned my little pet project, but also not thoroughly invested either.

I found some wonderful readings recently, and what better way to keep a record of it than through my rolling project journal. So here they are and a bit of my thoughts on each:

  1. Multiform is the architectural manifestation of our present moment

‘The ability to pursue a variety of agendas simultaneously is what Multiform is all about’

I admit I’m not much of a history nerd, despite the history of Architectural styles being so wildly imaginative and fascinating. Well this new one proposed by the article is interesting in that I can actually believe it. What exactly will the ‘Fouth Industrial Revolution’ entail? What are the patterns that emerge from it that will define this period?  It seems like we’re already in the thick of it, and usually when you’re in the middle of something, it’s really hard to understand it until you’re well past the moment or you take a giant step back.

2. Seize the Elevators

A good friend of mine wrote this article, which took me months to finish. Not because I’m an incredibly slow reader, but that I either get distracted or preoccupied, and I always wanted to leave myself a moment of time where I had ample brain energy to really appreciate what was written. In any case, wonderful albeit long essay regarding the elevator.

3. Disney Innovation and Converging Industries Make Electrifying Theme Parks Real

I imagine I’m not alone when it comes to saying being an Imagineer is probably one of my top dream jobs. I just love the idea of being part of the team that creates a magical environment for people to experience and enjoy. Partly the same reason I enjoy Cultural and Institutional projects in my current job. Reading this article just made me starry-eyed once more, because not only are they talking about dreaming and actually producing all these amazing environments, the article also discusses the technology to allow for the efficiency in production. It’s wild to imagine how many lightyears they are ahead of what I do on a daily basis, and it only makes me want it more.

Ok well that’s about it for now. I know exactly what I need to do for the next test in the Site Series, but I just quite literally have not made time for it. In the meantime, I did draw another sketch, this time with a lot more modesty and focus on modern day  architectural artifacts – glass, steel, concrete

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Pedagogy

I attended the WHAT IS A SCHOOL? Symposium
keynote at UofT this past Friday. The symposium marked the first use (a test!)
of Principal Hall, the main lecture hall for the Daniels building since it’s opening
last year. It is quite remarkable how early you can occupy a building before
it’s actually completed. If this building is any example, apparently occupancy for substantial completion before 100% completion is “very early”. Criticism aside, the space
worked well, and the acoustics were not noticeably terrible. In other words,
the hall worked great! I sat in the loose seating on the floor but discovered
later that the tired fixed seating further back was not only more comfortable but
also afforded a much better view of the stage. Next time.

What I wanted to muse about this time had
less to do with the content of the keynote (though it is
certainly worth a discussion point for later), but on the topic of education as
it might relate to my project vision.  I
had some early notes made for what AR could mean for students. I found that
more often than not, as a student, we spend a lot of time scrounging the
library (now more the internet) for information on buildings. Not just the surface
stuff – name, date, square footage, basic construction. But things like
envelope construction, material data, details & wall/floor composition.
There is now an enormous source available for that, and it’s only growing. The question is then, (and a challenge to myself), can my idea make it worth a student’s
time to use and learn from?

The biggest weakness in AR thus far, imo, has
always been it’s “gimmick-y-ness”. I can attest; once something seems
slow, buggy or clunky, I dismiss it almost immediately. But what if, clunkiness
aside, a database of details on famous as well as new/upcoming buildings can be made readily available? Through a mediated physical/digital world overlay built for users to analyze,
criticize, learn from and show appreciation. I think it would be neat. 

But neat isn’t what the world is looking for.

So I have some questions for myself. In the
fast paced and efficiency driven nature of today’s society, new ideas need to
provide value. What is the value for this type of database + interactive
overlay. How often would it be used? Would it be used at all? Would it be more
useful for architects, or architecture students?

A test 002 is on it’s way.

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