Architecture Enters Its Second Computational Revolution, Can You Keep Up?

In the beginning there was hand drawing. Then came AutoCAD and MicroStation and architecture's "first computer-based upheaval." Now, the need for hyper-evaluation is driving the Architecture 3.0 revolution, explains Neil Chambers.
November 29, 2012, 8am PST | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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"If you don’t know what Grasshopper is (or think it’s a reference to Kwai Chang Caine), you are already in the wastelands of the digital age. It is one of the leading factors of Architecture 3.0, the second computational revolution for building design. This new phase is shortening the design process from months to days , and allowing a new generation to envision, design, and execute major projects with a single laptop," says Niel Chambers, CEO and Founder of Brooklyn-based Chambers Design.

In an opinion piece for Metropolis, Chambers describes what sets this technological transformation apart from the production and graphics advances offered by "Architecture 2.0" software programs such as BIM and Rhino. For him, the next stage of architecture's "computational revolution" will involve the merging of production, graphics, and sustainability in a single platform.

"For Architecture 3.0 to come alive," says Chambers, "energy modeling and other sustainability-minded analyses need to be used as early as pre-conceptual, conceptual, and schematic phases. Second, programs that evaluate climate, energy, and comfort need to be used as often as Revit or Rhino is used today...Water, biodiversity, and ecology will need to be active design criteria for a true paradigm shift to happen."

"Where current energy modeling systems (eQuest, Energy Plus, and DOE-2) evaluate one building at a time, Architecture 3.0 wants to evaluate hundreds, if not thousands of design options for a single component of a building, such as glazing percentages, orientation or solar gain exchange."

"This is only the beginning of Architecture 3.0."

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Published on Saturday, November 17, 2012 in Metropolis POV Blog
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