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Architecture After the Event Horizon – Volume #49: Hello World!

04:00 - 22 September, 2016
Architecture After the Event Horizon – Volume #49: Hello World!, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter (WWoHP) at Universal theme parks in Florida. Image Courtesy of Volume Magazine
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter (WWoHP) at Universal theme parks in Florida. Image Courtesy of Volume Magazine

The following essay by Kazys Varnelis was first published by Volume Magazine in their 49th issue, Hello World! You can read the Editorial of this issue, Going Livehere.

During the last decade, the idea of a technological singularity has passed from science fiction to a plausible prediction of the proximate future. In its simplest terms, a technological singularity will take place when an artificial general intelligence (AGI), capable of modifying its own code, advances so rapidly that subsequent technological progress (and as a result history itself) become as unpredictable and unfathomable as what happens within a black hole. In the most radical vision, the ‘hard takeoff’, within hours or even minutes of artificial intelligence developing the capacity for recursive self-improvement, the intelligence advances so greatly that it fundamentally transforms life on Earth.

Going Live – Volume #49: Hello World!

04:00 - 15 September, 2016
Going Live – Volume #49: Hello World!, A year and a half ago, Uber set up an Advanced Technologies Center (ATC) in Pittsburgh. This month (September 2016) these cars are on the road. Image © Uber
A year and a half ago, Uber set up an Advanced Technologies Center (ATC) in Pittsburgh. This month (September 2016) these cars are on the road. Image © Uber

The following essay by Nick Axel (Volume's Managing Editor) first published by the magazine in their 49th issue, Hello World!

With the rise of computational networks and power, cognitive models developed and debated over in the postwar decades have finally been able to be put to work. Back then, there was a philosophical debate raging alongside the burgeoning field of computer science theory on the nature of consciousness, in which machines of artificial intelligence served as a thought experiment to question humanity. Yet with the proliferation of data and the centralization of its archives, theoretical practice moved from conceptual experiments to empirical tests.

© Volume
© Volume

Introducing Volume #49: Hello World!

04:30 - 13 September, 2016
Introducing Volume #49: Hello World!, © Volume
© Volume

Machines have long been integral to architectural discourse. Vitruvius concluded his ten books with a meditation on war machines, and Le Corbusier published on his industrial muses just over 100 years ago. Yet something is different today. We have always learned from machines—our societies are fundamentally shaped by their processes—but now, machines learn. We live in paradoxical times. Machinic processes, computational algorithms and artificial intelligence have never been so proximate, direct, and intimate to daily life, yet we are many steps removed from their practical operations.

This issue of Volume, the third in our Learning series, seeks to take one small step in the direction towards understanding the contemporary relevance of machines for architecture, and one giant leap for mankind. Volume #49: Hello World! also includes In Loving Support, a 32-page insert produced with Het Nieuwe Instituut on living and working with algorithms.

Introducing Volume #48: The Research Turn

04:00 - 7 June, 2016
Introducing Volume #48: The Research Turn, © Volume
© Volume

Volume #48: The Research Turn is comprised entirely of interviews and conversations. We wanted to learn from those who have been instrumental in shifting the boundaries and shaping today’s landscape of creative knowledge production. The issue also includes the catalogue for BLUE: Architecture of UN Peacekeeping Missions by Malkit Shoshan, the Dutch contribution to the 15th Venice Architecture Biennale.

Over the coming weeks Volume will share a curated selection of essays from this issue on ArchDaily. This represents the continuation of a partnership between two platforms with global agendas: in the case of ArchDaily to provide inspiration, knowledge and tools to architects across the world and, in the case of Volume, "to voice architecture any way, anywhere, anytime [by] represent[ing] the expansion of architectural territories and the new mandate for design."

Expanding Dredge Geologics

04:00 - 26 April, 2016
Expanding Dredge Geologics, Masterplan and schedule of the expanded Geologics. Image © The Open Workshop
Masterplan and schedule of the expanded Geologics. Image © The Open Workshop

The following article was first published by Volume Magazine in their 47th issue, The System*. You can read the Editorial of this issue, How Much Does Your System Weigh?here.

The movement and management of sediment is arguably the largest continuous project of spatial manipulation on the planet. This ongoing battle between geology and industry is most apparent through the act of dredging. Dredging is the excavation, gathering, transport, and disposal of sediment from subaquatic areas, enacted to maintain depths of shipping channels, harbors, and ports as well as to reclaim land, create sea defences, and remove toxic chemicals.[1] The primary impetus for dredging is to sustain logistical routes for the shipping industry by countering the forces of erosion, movement, and settling of sediments. Like the logistics of the global shipping industry it serves, dredging is a continual process whose magnitude and significance have fostered their own series of ‘geologics’ – the engineering of material processes that operate in temporal and spatial scales that are geological in scope.[2] Currently in the United States alone, more than four hundred ports and over 25,000 miles of navigation channels are being dredged.[3]

The Project of a Collective Line

04:00 - 6 April, 2016
The Project of a Collective Line, The Project of a Collective Line: Santa Cruz in Bolivia is an agro-export region dominated by transnational corporations. Image Courtesy of USGS
The Project of a Collective Line: Santa Cruz in Bolivia is an agro-export region dominated by transnational corporations. Image Courtesy of USGS

The following article was first published by Volume Magazine in their 47th issue, The System*. You can read the Editorial of this issue, How Much Does Your System Weigh?, here.

In 2006 Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, Brazilian President Lula da Silva and Argentinean President Néstor Kirchner proposed the construction of a gas pipeline connecting Venezuela to Brazil and Argentina, called the Gran Gasoduto del Sur. Although the project was never built, its path through the Amazon rainforest foregrounds the violent nature of resource extraction. At the same time, the project raised unique questions regarding the architecture of collective politics, particularly if understood in the context of the last fifteen years of political transformations throughout Latin America.

Introducing Volume #47: The System*

04:00 - 24 March, 2016
Introducing Volume #47: The System*, Volume #47: The System*. Image © Volume
Volume #47: The System*. Image © Volume

Volume is an "agenda-setting" quarterly magazine, published by the Archis Foundation (The Netherlands). Founded in 2005 as a research mechanism by Ole Bouman (Archis), Rem Koolhaas (OMA*AMO), and Mark Wigley (Columbia University Laboratory for Architecture/C-Lab), the project "reaches out for global views on designing environments, advocates broader attitudes to social structures, and reclaims the cultural and political significance of architecture."

Over the next six weeks Volume will share a curated selection of essays from The System* on ArchDaily. This represents the start of a new partnership between two platforms with global agendas: in the case of ArchDaily to provide inspiration, knowledge and tools to architects across the world and, in the case of Volume, "to voice architecture any way, anywhere, anytime [by] represent[ing] the expansion of architectural territories and the new mandate for design."

Cloud Urbanism: Towards a Redistribution of Spatial Value

04:00 - 21 March, 2016
Cloud Urbanism: Towards a Redistribution of Spatial Value, A billboard advertisement for Manhattan Mini-Storage. The green background and mention of “the cloud” is a direct reference to MakeSpace. Image via Business Insider, MakeSpace
A billboard advertisement for Manhattan Mini-Storage. The green background and mention of “the cloud” is a direct reference to MakeSpace. Image via Business Insider, MakeSpace

Volume Magazine in advance of their 47th issue, The System*.

Two recent trends have recently emerged from the United States’ real estate market that pick up on societal transformations in the way architecture and the city is inhabited. If synchronized, they stand to alter the principles under-riding contemporary logics of urban development. They do so by embodying an alternative system of values, framing its spatial articulation as a critical design project. The purpose of this short text is to present the two trends next to one another, evaluate the prospects of their synchronization, and speculate toward the future they potentiate in unison.

Plumber: Is This Not A Pipe? - Launch of Volume 37

00:00 - 27 January, 2014

How the Law's Loopholes Shape Our Cities

00:00 - 5 September, 2013
How the Law's Loopholes Shape Our Cities, A loophole in Lebanese laws is allowing the proliferation of towers in Beirut. Image © Flickr CC User Sean Long
A loophole in Lebanese laws is allowing the proliferation of towers in Beirut. Image © Flickr CC User Sean Long

In preparation for its December issue, entitled The Law and its Consequences, Volume Magazine is holding an open call for examples of local laws that have had unintended - or just unusual - consequences for our cities. The issue asks: "If we consider the law to be a piece of design, can we apply design intelligence to the law?"

The law has a long history of affecting a city's character. Perhaps the earliest design stipulation is contained in the book of Deuteronomy (22:8): "In case you build a new house, you must also make a parapet for your roof, that you may not place bloodguilt upon your house because someone falling might fall from it." Since then, laws such as fire regulations, zoning restrictions and preservation guidelines have become an everyday conundrum for architects, ultimately affecting the outcome of design. But these laws often create unexpected loopholes, which can lead to peculiar design quirks that come to define a city's sense of place.

Read on after the break for just some examples of the consequences of the law

Volume #31: Guilty Landscapes

20:00 - 13 July, 2012

Guilt has been effectively used to control and manipulate the masses. But it can also be the start of a change for the better: awareness, concern, action. Engagement and guilt are never far apart. Engagement is sublimated guilt. We can build on guilt, but can we build with guilt? Is guilt a material to design with?

Guilty Landscapes is the theme for the latest issue of Volume Magazine, a joint effort between AMO, C-LAB and Archis.

Full index and more info after the break