November 6-8, 2014 | Philadelphia, PA
Host School: University of Pennsylvania
Co-chairs: Winka Dubbeldam, UPenn & Nader Tehrani, MIT
“We (and by this I mean scientists first) are beginning to see that those organizations once called metaphorically alive are truly alive, but animated by a life of a larger scope and wider definition. I call this greater life "hyperlife." Hyperlife is a particular type of vivisystem endowed with integrity, robustness, and cohesiveness -- a strong vivisystem rather than a lax one. A rain forest and a periwinkle, an electronic network and a servomechanism, SimCity and New York City, all possess degrees of hyperlife” Kevin Kelly
The architectural discipline has, for centuries, operated under the regime of representation, adopting the devices and techniques of projection to imagine a world that has yet to be. The generative bias has been visual to date, using optics to construct a relationship with the world.
However, with the advent of emerging technologies, there are new possibilities that architecture itself, can perform, speak back, react and essentially become a protagonist, and not just operate as a visual backdrop. Smart cities, buildings, and devices are leading the way towards new forms of research, changing not only the forms of buildings, but their behavior and performance.
Within this context many different areas of research have developed, and in particular across disciplines, drawing in applications from biology to robotics, from material sciences to software, and from responsive technologies to manufacturing protocols. Environments are being impacted by the discovery of material properties at the nano-scale, while at the same time, global networks of data are helping to gauge the optimization of our use of resources.
If the architectural discipline, after modernism, has had the time to re-establish its own disciplinary roots and motivations, these new technologies prompt us to revisit other disciplinary models that might impact our thinking.
Learning from these other sciences and industries, architecture itself emerges as an intelligent living environment. The theme of the ACSA conference will focus on the ideas surrounding smart, responsive and sensible spaces. How does this theme lead to innovative thinking on future cites and architectures, and hence how do we lead the way in education?
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