[Un]checked Emergence: infusing the human element into algorithmic design
Deitle, Scott Edward
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Architecture is defined as the art and science of building. Experience within a built space can be deliberately heightened or diminished as a result of conscious decisions by the architect. With the addition of intent, the designer can transform a building into architecture. It is intent and emotional engagement that reveals beauty, love, and interest to the occupant. New methods of conceptual design have materialized with the advancement of computer technology. Complex theories of organization and emergence have caught the eye of architects because of their capabilities of mathematically producing radical physical representations. These manifestations have great "wow factor" because of their dramatic interpretation of shape, and have been subsequently lauded as beautiful and innovative architecture. As computer technology and three-dimensional modeling systems have proliferated, so has the scale and ambition of these experimental forms. However, there is a vital component missing from pure computational design methods. Without the implementation of human elements and experiences to the design of built space, computational architecture is nothing more than eye candy. Since so much of our lives are spent in built environments, we cannot rely on design methods that fail to take this critical component into account. This thesis will describe the current condition of computer simulations and virtual environments in our culture, how they relate to the field of architecture, and what elements of human experience are missing from them. This thesis will explore and document a design methodology that infuses generative computational design processes with the essential human elements of love, mortality, and responsibility. This methodology will lead to the design of a live music performance center in downtown Austin, Texas. The human elements of love, mortality, and responsibility must remain embedded in the computational design process.