If only a few years ago 3D printing was viewed with a certain suspicion, recent news has shown that it is in fact a viable technology that is here to stay. On April 30, 2021, tenants of the first 3D printed concrete house in the Netherlands received their keys. The house in Eindhoven—the first of five within the 'Milestone Project'—fully complies with all the country's stringent construction requirements.
Technology: The Latest Architecture and News
Through shapes, colors, and the elements on their facades, many architects have sought to bring a sense of movement to works that are otherwise physically static. Santiago Calatrava, Jean Nouvel, and Frank Gehry are only a few of the masters who managed to provide a dynamic effect to motionless structures, highlighting the work in context using formal strategies borrowed from the plastic arts. In other cases, however, architects have also opted for physically kinetic structures that could bring a unique aesthetic or functional dimension to the work.
There's no question that 3D printing is here to stay. However, it is still a developing technology that raises certain questions: is it really effective for massive and large-scale construction? How sustainable is it? Will it go from being an option to becoming the norm in the construction industry? To help clarify the broader picture of 3D printing's place in architecture and construction, we spoke with Alain Guillen, Managing Director and Co-founder of XtreeE, a platform that allows architects to bring their designs to reality through advanced large-scale 3D printing, generating quick and precise shapes without material waste. See below how he and his team see the future of robotics in architecture and why architects should prepare to embrace this new technology, heading for a more efficient but equally creative future.
Autodesk has just acquired Spacemaker, a platform that “gives architects and developers the automation superpower to test design concepts in minutes” and explore the best urban design options. Targeting architects, urban designers, and real estate developers, the cloud-based AI-powered generative design helps professionals taking better early-stage design decisions.
Clayton Miller on Data Science in Architecture: "the Academic and Industrial Field are Just Starting"
Clayton Miller is an Assistant Professor at NUS, part of BUDS Lab, a scientific research group that leverages data sources from built and urban environments to improve energy efficiency and conservation, comfort, safety, and satisfaction of humans. He holds a Doctor of Sciences from the ETH Zürich, an MSc. (Building) from the National University of Singapore (NUS), and a BSc. Masters of Architectural Engineering (MAE) from the University of Nebraska - Lincoln (UNL).
ArchDaily had the chance to interview Miller and find out his point of view on how programming and data science can help in improving architecture and construction.
BIG has unveiled its design for AI CITY, the future home for Terminus Group, a smart service provider. Imagined as the new center of innovation for China, the project will be dedicated to "artificial intelligence, robotics, networking, and big data”. Located in Chongqing, in southwest China, known as the “mountain city”, the project is set within the Chongqing Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone.
In order to assist the city of London and encourage constructions after Covid-19, the Mayor of London, with tech-led design practice Bryden Wood and leading residential consultancy Cast, have launched a new version of the housing design app PRiSM. Using the latest digital technology and data to help design and build manufactured homes, the freely available application will allow users to share expertise and use technology to transform the design process and get the city building the homes Londoners need.
In 2012, Belgian software developers Peter Eerlings and Jerry De Paepe were contacted by an architecture firm looking for a solution to simplify their field reports. Creating field reports was an extremely time-consuming activity for them: first, writing down notes on paper and taking photos during a site visit. Back at the office, transferring the photos to the PC with a cable. Next, adding annotations to photos with Paint, deciphering and typing out the handwritten notes, struggling with the layout while inserting photos in Word, and so on. Over and over again. It was an administrative hassle that easily took more than an hour for each field report - sometimes two or three.
Robotic automation has been widely adopted by the manufacturing industry for decades. Most automotive vehicles, consumer electrical appliances, and even domestic robots were made and assembled by “armies” of robots with minimal human supervision. Robotic automation brings higher production efficiency, a safer working environment, lower costs and superior quality. After years of development and deployment, the process now requires minimal human involvement.
This article was originally published on Common Edge.
As planners who regularly engage everyday citizens in the planning process, we like to start by having people build their favorite childhood memories with found objects. Most often, these memories are joy-infused tales of the out-of-doors, nature, friends, family, exploration, freedom. Rarely do these memories have much to do with technology, shopping, driving, watching television, and so many of the other things that seem to clutter up our daily lives. But then again, these are folks who have known a world that has been—at least for part of their lives—screen- and smartphone-free.
Our cities, vulnerable by nature and design, have generated the biggest challenge that humankind has to face. With the vast majority of the population expected to settle in urban agglomerations, rapid urbanization is going to raise the issue of adaptability with future social, environmental, technological and economic transformations.
In fact, the main problematic of the decade questions how our cities will cope with fast-changing factors. It also looks into the main aspects to consider in order to ensure long-term growth. In this article, we highlight major points that help future-proof our cities and create a livable, inclusive and competitive fabric that adapts to any unexpected future transformation.
Now more than ever, architecture is in need of innovation. The pandemic has made us fundamentally rethink the functioning of our cities, public spaces, buildings, and homes. Meanwhile, the recent Black Lives Matter and racial justice protests have us questioning architecture’s complicity in broader socioeconomic issues. These challenges are pressing, and we cannot put off changing architecture any longer.
Like most functions in recent months, this year’s Digital FUTURES, which is held annually since 2011 at Tongji University in Shanghai, had to move online due to the pandemic. The organizers took this as an opportunity to give the event a global dimension, turning the festival into what they rightfully call the most significant worldwide event for architectural education ever staged, with a 24/7 display of workshops, lectures and panel discussions involving some of the most prominent architects and educators. Here is an overview of the festival, together with a selection of lectures from Digital FUTURES World.