Wednesday, November 12. 2014
Note: an interesting new publication and project by Space Caviar (Joseph Grima --former Storefront for Art & Architecture, Domus, Adhocracy exhibition, etc.--, Tamar Shafir, Andrea Bagnato, Giulia Finazzi, Martina Muzi, Simone C. Niquille, Giulia Grattarola) about the changing nature of "home" under the pressure of "multiple forces" (if domesticity does, indeed, still exists as the authors state it). Interestingly, some data files and charts used in the books are made oublicly available via a Github. Reminds me somehow of recorder data about a public project we made available on the site of the project (Heterochrony), back in 2012.
Via Space Caviar
The way we live is rapidly changing under pressure from multiple forces—financial, environmental, technological, geopolitical. What we used to call home may not even exist anymore, having transmuted into a financial commodity measured in square meters, or sqm. Yet, domesticity ceased long ago to be central in the architectural agenda; this project aims to launch a new discussion on the present and the future of the home.
SQM: The Quantified Home, produced for the 2014 Biennale Interieur, charts the scale of this change using data, fiction, and a critical selection of homes and their interiors—from Osama bin Laden’s compound to apartment living in the age of Airbnb.
With original texts by: Rahel Aima, Aristide Antonas, Gabrielle Brainard and Jacob Reidel, Keller Easterling, Ignacio González Galán, Joseph Grima, Hilde Heynen, Dan Hill, Sam Jacob, Alexandra Lange, Justin McGuirk, Joanne McNeil, Alessandro Mendini, Jonathan Olivares, Marina Otero Verzier, Beatriz Preciado, Anna Puigjaner, Catharine Rossi, Andreas Ruby, Malkit Shoshan, and Bruce Sterling.
The book is published by Lars Müller, and will be available for sale worldwide from November 2014. The dust jacket is screen-printed on wallpaper in 22 different patterns, randomly mixed.
Download the table of contents
Wednesday, October 08. 2014
Note: a few of our recent works and exhibitions are included in this promising young publication related to architectural thinking, Desierto, edited by Paper - Architectural Histamine in Madrid. At the editorial team invitation, I had the occasion to write a paper about Deterritorialized Living and one of its physical installation last year in Pau (France), during Pau Acces(s). We also took the occasion of the publication to give a glimpse of a related research project called Algorithmic Atomized Functioning.
By fabric | ch
From the editorial team:
"The temperature of the invisible and the desacralization of the air.
28° Celsius is the temperature at which protection becomes superfluous. It is also the temperature at which swimming pools are acclimatised. Within the limits of the this hygrothermal comfort zone, we do not require the intervention of our body's thermoregulatory mechanisms nor that of any external artificial thermal controls in order to feel pleasantly comfortable while carrying out a sedentary activity without clothing. 28° Celsius is thus the temperature at which clothing can disappear, just as architecture could."
Authors are Gabriel Ruiz-Larrea, Sean Lally, Philippe Rahm, Nerea Calvillo, myself, Helen Mallinson, Antonio Cobo, José Vella Castillo and Pauly Garcia-Masedo.
Editorial by gabriel Ruiz-Larrea (editor in chief). Editorial team composed of Natalia David, Nuria Úrculo, María Buey, Daniel Lacasta Fitzsimmons.
Inhabiting Deterritorialization, by Patrick Keller.
Desierto #3 and past issues can be ordered online on Paper bookstore.
Wednesday, October 01. 2014
Note: will the term "architect" be definitely overtaken by computer scientists? (rather the term "urbanist" in fact in this precise case, but still...). Will our environments be fully controlled by protocols, data sensing, bots and algorithms? Possibly... but who will design them? It makes me think that at one point, the music industry didn't think that their business would change so dramatically. We all know what happened but the good news is: we still need musicians!
So, I probably believe that architects and the schools that form them should look carefully to what is about to happen (the now already famous -- but still to come -- "Internet of Everything"). New actors (in the building industry) are pushing hard for their place in this "still to come" field that include the construction, monitoring and control of cities, territories, buildings, houses, ... (IBM, Cisco, Google, Apple, etc.). Their hidden lines of code will become much more significant for the life of urban citizens (because of their increasing impact on "the way life goes") than any "new" 3d shape you can possibly imagine. Shape is over, code is coming in a street near you!
Via The Verge
The world's got problems and the Google CEO is searching for solutions
By Vlad Savov
As if self-driving cars, balloon-carried internet, or the eradication of death weren't ambitious enough projects, Google CEO Larry Page has apparently been working behind the scenes to set up even bolder tasks for his company. The Information reports that Page started up a Google 2.0 project inside the company a year ago to look at the big challenges facing humanity and the ways Google can overcome them. Among the grand-scale plans discussed were Page's desire to build a more efficient airport as well as a model city. To progress these ideas to fruition, the Google chief has also apparently proposed a second research and development lab, called Google Y, to focus on even longer-term programs that the current Google X, which looks to support future technology and is headed up by his close ally Sergey Brin.
More about it HERE.
Tuesday, September 30. 2014
Everything I Know: 42 Hours of Buckminster Fuller’s Visionary Lectures Free Online (1975) | #documentation
Via Open Culture
Think of the name Buckminster Fuller, and you may think of a few oddities of mid-twentieth-century design for living: the Dymaxion House, the Dymaxion Car, the geodesic dome. But these artifacts represent only a small fragment of Fuller’s life and work as a self-styled “comprehensive anticipatory design scientist.” In his decades-long project of developing and furthering his worldview — an elaborate humanitarian framework involving resource conservation, applied geometry, and neologisms like “tensegrity,” “ephemeralization,” and “omni-interaccommodative” — the man wrote over 30 books, registered 28 United States patents, and kept a diary documenting his every fifteen minutes. These achievements and others have made Fuller the subject of at least four documentaries and numerous books, articles, and papers, but now you can hear all about his thoughts, acts, experiences, and times straight from the source in the 42-hour lecture series Everything I Know, available to download at the Internet Archive. Though you’d perhaps expect it of someone whose journals stretch to 270 feet of solid paper, he could really talk.
In January 1975, Fuller sat down to deliver the twelve lectures that make up Everything I Know, all captured on video and enhanced with the most exciting bluescreen technology of the day. Props and background graphics illustrate the many concepts he visits and revisits, which include, according to the Buckminster Fuller Institute, “all of Fuller’s major inventions and discoveries,” “his own personal history in the context of the history of science and industrialization,” and no narrower a range of subjects than “architecture, design, philosophy, education, mathematics, geometry, cartography, economics, history, structure, industry, housing and engineering.” In his time as a passenger on what he called Spaceship Earth, Fuller realized that human progress need not separate the “natural” from the “unnatural”: “When people say something is natural,” he explains in the first lecture (embedded above as a YouTube video above), “‘natural’ is the way they found it when they checked into the picture.” In these 42 hours, you’ll learn all about how he arrived at this observation — and all the interesting work that resulted from it.
Friday, September 05. 2014
A little bit of irony about skeuomorphism by Studio Moniker in their video for the "office of the future". It looks like the real offices of Google though, according to the many pictures that have populated the web about their offices interior design... I hope Google glasses don't make you see the world that way btw.
Jump to synchronize the office floor with the kind of work you are doing!"
So, do you believe that Google employees are jumping too to synchronize their working space?
Saturday, August 02. 2014
Note: in the end... it's time for me (too) to turn off my screens for a couple of weeks and maybe go look for this swimming pool! "Subjective collections of ..." and myself will be back in early September.
The piece was completed last Friday and it consists of a single, diminutive swimming pool located somewhere in the southern Mojave Desert between Joshua Tree and Apple Valley. The public is allowed to use the pool, but in order to do so visitors need the key that unlocks it (it is kept covered) as well as the GPS coordinates. Only once you have the key, which is kept at the MAK Center, are you given the coordinates.
Friday, August 01. 2014
By fabric | ch
As we lack a decent search engine on this blog and as we don't have a "tag cloud" either... (and as Summer is also a period when there is maybe still a bit of time left to dig into content)
HERE ARE ALL THE CURRENT CATEGORIES TO NAVIGATE ON | RBLG BLOG:
(to be seen below if you're navigating on the blog's page or here for rss readers)
Posted by Patrick Keller in fabric | ch, Architecture, Art, Culture & society, Design, Interaction design, Science & technology, Sustainability, Territory at 21:18
Defined tags for this entry: architecture, art, culture & society, design, fabric | ch, interaction design, science & technology, sustainability, territory, toorop
Thursday, July 31. 2014
Scientists have discovered that scorpions design their burrows to include both hot and cold spots. A long platform provides a sunny place to warm up before they hunt, whilst a humid chamber acts as a cool refuge during the heat of the day.
This recent discovery of scorpion architecture adds to a sizeable list of impressive non-human architecture.
Anthills consist of a complex network of paths. Comparative to the size of an individual ant, these structures are mega-skyscrapers.
Likewise, termites build huge structures that have been dubbed "cathedrals." Reaching up to 6m high or more, termite cathedrals are clustered in large arrays that cover whole landscapes.
This complex web of branches was built by the vogelkop gardener bowerbird. In direct refutation of the "less is more" aesthetic exemplified by both ants and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, these birds embellish their structures with any bright things they can find.
Primates, including humans, are probably the most avid builders. For example, from an early age, orangutans learn to design and construct elaborately woven nests high in trees.
Far from trivial – and humor aside –, studying animal architectures helps destabilize the normative understanding of architecture as a strictly human domain of activity. Certain studios – like Animal Architecture – both draw inspiration from non-human design and develop collaborative practices with non-humans. Decentering the human as the center of architectural thinking is a necessary step in fostering a deeper understanding of the complex mesh of interconnectedness that is ecology. Without this step, humans will continue to practice architecture without regard for a larger context, which is why the profession already accounts for nearly half of US carbon emissions.
Wednesday, July 02. 2014
Note: this sounds like a boring "smart house" digital future (of household appliances: the famous "smart washing machine" might finally and sadly indeed be connected, but it will also certainly include a Google login and password...) Surprisingly (or let's rather say pedictably), it is not an architecture magazine that speaks about the steaks of this close future, but a technological one.
Imagine a dishwasher that requires a username and password. Smart homes will require unprecedented effort to ensure not just security but also usability.
The battle between Google and Apple is moving from smart phones to smart things, with both companies vying to provide the underlying architecture that networks your appliances, utilities, and entertainment equipment. Earlier in June, at its annual developer conference, Apple announced HomeKit, a new software framework for communications between home devices and Apple’s devices. Meanwhile, Nest, a maker of smart thermostats and smoke alarms that was bought by Google earlier this year for $3.2 billion, recently launched a similar endeavor with software that lets developers build apps for its products and those from several other companies.
Indeed, a quick look at the “Works with Nest” website reveals just how interconnected our future is about to become, with smart cars telling our smart thermostats when we’ll be home, smart dryers keeping our clothes “fresh and wrinkle-free” until we arrive, and household lights that flash red when the Nest detector senses smoke or carbon monoxide.
In fact, though, many of us are already living amongst an Internet of (some) things. We have desktops, laptops, cell phones, streaming devices like Apple TV and Roku boxes, and even smart televisions. It’s just that these systems have barely begun to work together properly, and therein lies the problem.
The visions of Google and Apple will require a lot more than new frameworks and developer conferences to be truly transformative. They will require heretofore-unseen levels of reliability, security, and usability. Otherwise we’re in for a frustrating and possibly dangerous networked future.
Wi-Fi is a key enabler of the networked home. But while Wi-Fi is now present in more than 61 percent of U.S. households, many homes have incomplete coverage, and when Wi-Fi doesn’t work, debugging is difficult. It will need to be dramatically more reliable than today to support the networked future.
Broadband Internet will need to be more reliable as well—as reliable as electric service is today. For many this may mean cable modems that can fall back to some kind of wireless 4G service, perhaps from a different provider. These modems will need to be dramatically easier to install and maintain than today’s.
We will also need improved debugging systems for when the Internet doesn’t work as it should. Today the primary recourse when your Internet is down is to reboot the cable modem, the laptop, or the smart TV—or even all three! And perhaps the problem wasn’t even in the house. To legitimately be considered smart, smart devices must assess what’s wrong with the connection, and then help fix it.
Connecting anything to a secure home Wi-Fi network is a challenge for many. And some devices need additional authentication information, such as an Apple or Google username and password. When passwords change, the smart objects need to get the new passwords, or they cease to work.
This approach of binding our smart devices to our personal accounts may be an easy engineering decision today, but it will make less sense as more devices show up in households with multiple family members. Families shouldn’t be forced to decide if the dishwasher is bound to Mom’s Gmail account or Dad’s. Instead, the household should have its own identity, with different family members having different levels of access depending on their needs.
Differential access will also be critical for the wide range of formal and informal arrangements that many households require. Think about babysitters, housecleaners, maintenance workers, and building superintendents. If these people need some way to interact with your smart devices, there should be some way to give them that access without sharing your username and password. And there should be some way to review their actions after the fact. And all of this delegation and auditing will need to be easy to configure and use without reading a manual or watching a video.
Beyond the issue of usability, the smart home will be an attractive target for hackers and malware. Even if the devices themselves repel attackers, other points of vulnerability include malware-infested desktops, laptops, and mobile phones. Smart things will be attacked, almost certainly in ways that we can’t anticipate today. Even simple data leaks might cause significant problems if they can be systematically harvested and exploited—for example, thieves might be able to determine when you’re not home. Voyeurs might hack your surveillance cameras.
With both Google and Apple aggressively moving into this space, another concern is the degree of compatibility between devices. Today, these firms are erecting barriers between their home entertainment offerings, with Apple TV and Chromecast, for example, offering separate content, pricing, and streaming models.
Some third-party vendors will surely try to stay out of this fight, offering apps that run on both iOS and Android, or are simply controlled via a Web interface. While that kind of strategy might work for a smart light bulb, it’ll be harder for the maker of a major appliance. If companies chose one ecosystem over another, it will be hard for consumers to switch from Apple-powered appliances to Google-powered ones.
Two things about the smart home of the future seem sure. First, given the array of resources being lined up on both sides of this fight, there is unlikely to be a dominant winner, meaning less flexibility for homeowners. Second, the coming wave of smart devices will rely on technology that is ill-equipped to guarantee reliability, and will also introduce completely new ways for things to go wrong. So the companies that make them will need to put far more focus on security, usability, and privacy to earn both customer acceptance and trust.
Friday, June 27. 2014
Note: Bracket just announced the line up for the 4th edition of the "bookazine". This time, BRACKET [takes action]!
After reviewing over 170 exciting entries, the jury has selected the projects and articles posted on the Bracket website for [Takes Action]. To view the selected entries, click here. All of the entries made for a great discussion and difficult decision for the jury. Many thanks to everyone who participated in the Bracket [Takes Action] Call for Entries and our jury: Pier Vittorio Aureli, Vishaan Chakrabarti, Adam Greenfield, Belinda Tato, and Yoshiharu Tskuamoto. Lastly, a special thanks to Archinect for handling the web interface and creating our new website (which also went live today). We will be in touch with the selected contributors shortly regarding the next phase of the submission.
— Neeraj Bhatia & Mason White, Bracket [Takes Action] Editors
fabric | rblg
This blog is the survey website of fabric | ch - studio for architecture, interaction and research.
We curate and reblog articles, researches, writings, exhibitions and projects that we notice and find interesting during our everyday practice. Most articles concern the intertwined fields of architecture, territory, art, interaction design and science. From time to time, we also publish here documentation about our own work and research.
This website is used by fabric | ch as archive, references and resources. It is shared with all those interested in the same topics as we are, in the hope that they will also find inspiring references and content in it.
| rblg on Twitter