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An assessment of the architectural representation process within the computational design environment

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2006
Uçar, Başak
With the introduction of a computational design environment, architectural design and representation processes witness a radical transition from the analog to the digital medium, that may be asserted to initiate a paradigm shift affecting both. In this new design environment, extending the instrumentality of computer-aided processes to the generative use of computational tools and procedures, architectural design and representation processes are subject to mutual alterations, challenged with computational design strategies such as parametric design, associative geometry, generative diagrams, scripting and algorithmic procedures. Computational design approaches proceed with the definition of a mathematical model based on the numeric definition of relations and equations, substituting the conventional visual/orthographic representation. This thesis aims to inquire the outcomes of assuming non-visual/numeric representation as a strategy in the therefore redefined process of architectural representation. Through the generative logic embedded in the mathematical model, attention shifts from form to process. This emphasis on process rather than the formal outcome, aids the experimentation of a desired indeterminacy, coming forth in dynamic, non-linear design processes, blurring the boundaries between different phases of design, and of representation. The intentional search for a generative design process liberated from the visual/formal determinism of the conventional design approach, initiates a conscious delay in the definition of form, and thus of visual representation. The thesis discusses the potentials presented by generative mathematical models defined with the aid of computational design tools, and the ways in which they alter and inform architectural design and representation.