Category archives: Design Theory

Discussions of Design Epistemology or more generally thoughts about design. RSS

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A long and involved email will sit in the queue for a good long time (Short and dealing with a single issue or idea I can respond to while tests run...)


Never did get around to finishing reading Jelle's last big email. I've written two responses already, but I'm only about 1/2 way through it, and the rest appears to be requiring some serious thought to properly answer.

I'm very bad at long emails these days, it's the kind of ...

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Setup work for Jelle's project (Install/port radiance to AMD64 Gentoo...)


Jelle's project is scripting Radiance, so I need to install it. So far it's not marked as working on AMD64 in Gentoo portage. Hopefully it will just build and run :) . My eyes are not in great shape (kinda blurring as I try to read the screen), so I'm trying to avoid doing ...

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With whom would I like to study? (Pondering question at a party while I can't sleep...)


So this question came up at a party (Sara's friend from a few posts back), and I didn't have any good idea. The problem is that most designers don't really do much with theory, and of those that do, few are doing anything particularly interesting these days.

I study at the meta-theory ...

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Don't seem to be in the mood to write serious stuff (Ritual in design blathering...)


Next section in the outline of the Play section is the use of Ritual in Design. The problem is that much of the material in the section is a rehash of the stuff earlier. Ritual plays with hidden orders, and the arbitrary. The difference is in the experiential quality of the play.

Ritual involves making ...

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A perfect evening (From the Book of Questions...)


This question came up at my last party, and my answer was too brief to capture what I dream of, so here's the expanded version (warning, don't expect anything grand, I'm a bit of an Epicurean at heart):

We are in our home. The home is modest, but well designed, near the ...

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The Inexact in Design (Section roughed out now...)


This section discusses the use of play in the sense of loosness, in the design process. It's obviously going to need a lot more text, as the number of issues it touches is large. Still, the basic idea is there. Could use a lot more playfulness in the writing, I think. Anyway, read away ...

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Not much done this evening (Began working on "inexactitude" section...)


Finally saw "The Incredibles", it was definitely worth the money. Anyway, got home and didn't really feel up to doing any work, so spent a few hours vegging on the couch.

Eventually pulled my lazy bones out of bed and started work on the next section of the Play in Design document. This one ...

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An issue that came up while summarising my thesis (More party thoughts float across the unsleeping mind...)


I got asked to summarise my thesis a number of times last night, which is always difficult to do, but is something one has to practice. At one point I said something like this:

Human beings are creatures trying to understand their environment.

which was fine, because the person I was talking with was primarily ...

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Play in Design: The Ampersand (First draft starts... forgot how interesting this stuff is (well, to me, anyway)...)


Since the whole point of starting this blog was to prod me into doing some serious work on making my thesis work more accessible I suppose I should actually do some writing for it. So, the first sub-section of the "Play in Design" section now has a first-draft. There are 14 "Treasure Chest" sections in ...

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My subconscious needs dream-writing lessons (Retro dream-style reasserts itself...)


Just had a dream in a style that I haven't had much since leaving architecture, very film-noire, lots of montage and suggestive imagery, with really hard-to-interpret symbols crawling over various surfaces.

The dream was a standard "get your house in order" type thing, set in a cottage, where my mother, father and myself were ...

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