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Technology: The Latest Architecture and News

Meaningful Control: Humans Over Intelligent Technologies with Filippo Santoni de Sio

Strelka Institute's 2020 Summer program has invited Delft University and Politecnico di Milano professor Filippo Santoni de Sio’s to give a lecture about keeping control of technology which is more and more intelligent and autonomous. 

Our future is full of robots and artificial intelligence. Intelligent systems like the ones we already have in our smartphones assess our health, make financial transactions, take strategic decisions and actions in warfare, drive our cars, and more. Some people dream of intelligent systems that will perfectly match our desires and needs, be beneficial for everybody, and make us happier, healthier, richer, and smarter. Others fear intelligent systems will turn against us, make us unhappy and unemployed, damage us, enslave us, and dehumanize us (if not kill us). Which scenario will eventually be realised crucially depends on the question of whether we as a society will be able to control the direction of future technological development. 

How Will Digitalization and Remote Construction Change our Habits as Architects?

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Architects don’t make buildings. Architects make drawings of buildings. But of course, someone has to make the building. The construction industry is one of the largest economic sectors and we all interact with the built environment on a daily basis, but the actual work of getting a building from drawing to structure has barely evolved over the decades. While the rest of the world has moved into Industry 4.0, the construction sector has not kept pace. Architecture has begun to embrace some digitalization. After all, not many of us work with mylar on drafting tables anymore. So with the architecture industry’s everlasting link to the construction industry, will the latter pick up some new technological tricks by association? And when it does, how will that change the role of the architect?

Systems to Design a Smart and Contactless Home

© Luis Gallardo Courtesy of RES4 © Paul Finkel © Charles Hosa + 15

Smart homes, the Internet of Things, and contactless technology have become an indelible part of the architecture and interior design industries, with automated lighting, smart HVAC units, and speakers like Alexa or Google Home becoming a principal part of the modern upper middle class home. As new devices and competing systems are continually released, we list some of the most popular home technologies developed by Lutron, alongside tips for how to integrate and choose among them.

NBBJ Imagines Spiraling Headquarters for Vivo, China's Growing Smartphone and Tech Company

NBBJ has been selected to design the new Vivo headquarters, introducing the next generation of work environments that integrates nature, health, and equal access to amenities. Located in Shenzhen’s Bao’an district, the 32-story spiraling tower highlights an innovative design that embraces the urban-coastal site and reflects the company’s values. Construction began in May 2020 and is scheduled for completion by fall 2025.

Visualizing the Invisible: Illustrating Structural and Comfort Analyses

When someone mentions architecture visualization, most immediately think of sketches, computational renderings, and drawings. This connection occurs because we almost always associate visualization with picturing a project that is not yet built, either for the validation of aesthetic and functional decisions or to represent the idea to a client, who is often unfamiliar with technical drawings. Yet in addition to considering superficial elements such as materials, plans, textures, and colors, when carrying out a project, the architect needs to be aware of technical issues that are invisible to the naked eye, which may directly influence the project.

Applying Material Innovation: Does Architecture Have What It Takes?

There is a slide I like to show at the beginning of the architecture courses I teach that provides an overview of the last hundred years or so in design and technology. In the left column, a car from the beginning of the 20th Century (a Ford Model T) is poised over a contemporary car (a Tesla). The middle column contains a similar juxtaposition, showing a WWI-era biplane and a modern-day stealth fighter (an F-117A). In the right column, Walter Gropius’s 1926 Bauhaus Dessau building is seen next to an up-to-date urban mixed-use building. The punch line, of course, is that the two buildings—separated by roughly 100 years—look basically the same, whereas the cars and planes separated by the same timespan seem worlds apart. What is the reason for this?

Open Call: Outer Space 2020 by Blank Space

We are on the cusp of the second great age of space exploration.

Outer space has always captured the imaginations of the public. New advances in technology (including comet landings, the Orion Spacecraft, and large scale social experiments leading to exploration of Mars) mean that outer space is no longer a place only astronauts will get to experience – but something you and I can experience within our lifetimes

For a long time, the fantastical visions of space exploration have been rooted in the scifi proposals of the 50s, 60s and 70s. Ring worlds, death stars and space colonies conjure vibrant, psychedelic

Artificial Intelligence Can Only Help Architecture if We Ask the Right Questions

AI in the architecture industry has provoked much debate in recent years - yet it seems like very few of us know exactly what it is or why it has created this storm of emotions. There are professionals researching AI who know more about the field than I do, but I have hands-on experience using AI and algorithms in my design over the past 10 years through various projects. This is one of the challenges that our field faces. How can we make practical use of these new tools?

4 Technologies Impacting Furniture Design and Manufacturing

Dissociating architecture from furniture is almost impossible. As Le Corbusier parking contemporary cars in his project photos suggests, the objects that decorate a domestic space demonstrate the wealth and lifestyle of the user who lives in it. From the moment that humanity ceased to be nomadic, there has existed records of rudimentary furniture. In an excavated site dating from 3,100 to 2,500 BCE, a variety of stone furniture was discovered, from cabinets and beds to stone shelves and seats. Since these early examples, furniture has always been used to express ideas: be it the exclusive and luxurious furniture of Ancient Egypt, meant to demonstrate the power and wealth of the empire, to the functional and simplified designs of the Bauhaus, meant to reconstruct rationality in the world, studying the evolution of furniture design is instrumental to understanding architectural styles.

Nowadays, the advancement of technology and the internet has made changes develop faster and faster, making them even more difficult to assimilate and follow. Furniture follows this trend, be it in the way of designing, manufacturing, or even selling products. Below, we outline some ways in which technology has impacted this field:

From Design to Data: 12 Examples of Parametric Façades

The digitization of production and technological resources linked to the development of increasingly sophisticated tools has a direct impact on the contemporary practice of architecture and urbanism. Thinking about cities and buildings based on the digital assumption provides great possibilities for innovation in terms of design, optimization of resources and processes, improvement in performance and monitoring the maintenance of work, among other aspects. Many tools are already available, ranging from artificial intelligence to 3D printing, through various devices that change the paradigms of the profession and demand a new attitude when designing.

7 Practical Applications of Artificial Intelligence in Urban Management

The use of artificial intelligence (AI) is based on the idea of ​​optimizing, streamlining and expanding the reach of the most diverse operations. Their systems are programmed to identify patterns and carry out predictions, decisions, and ultimately perform and actions with speed and accuracy. The efficiency of the models depends on the quantity and quality of the data, which can be obtained by applications, cameras, and sensors. In the urban context, technology based on the use of artificial intelligence has been seen as a way to improve the management of cities, especially those that are denser and have larger footprints.

How Workplace Technology Trends Could Look in a Post-Pandemic Future

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The impact of COVID-19 has disrupted daily life as we know it and caused a shift in technology trends within the workplace. Over recent weeks, businesses have found themselves hastily searching for and implementing temporary solutions to help them deliver an uninterrupted service. These solutions are highlighting the significant role technology plays in helping companies adapt to the situation and maintain daily operations. But what happens once the crisis is over?

OTF 3D Printing: Scholarship - IaaC

On behalf of IAAC, I’m glad to announce to you that the OTF:3D Printing Architecture program has extended the application deadline until April 19th for 2 FULL scholarships for next academic year. This is a great opportunity to learn about novel technologies for sustainable design and construction, thanks to additive manufacturing.

With the scholarship program we want to strengthen relations with local Universities or Research Centers in interesting contexts such as Moçambic, Zimbabue, Angola, Etiopia, Tanzania, Somalia, Angola, Camerun, Nigeria, Somalia, Kenya and many more. It's a long term project, that wants to establish long and strong relations