Category archives: Design Theory

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Brutalism in Design (Conversation in a cafe)


Okay, I'll try to do a better job of describing brutalism here than I did earlier when Simon asked me about it.

Brutalism comes from the general idea of alternative beauty. That is, it proposes that there can be beauty in that which is not refined or "finished". It proposes that the traces of ...

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I like printing things! (Environmental crisis of conscience)


There is a certain wonder about producing a physical thing. My thesis advisor used to rhapsodise about the wonders of physical constructions (he is a boat, aircraft and furniture-focussed architect). Today I had one of those moments where I had to agree with him.

Producing the PDF for the handout for the conference was nice ...

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I was going to bed somewhere back there ('pedia makes 2 hours disappear...)


Was about to go to bed when I decided to review the article on proportion. Realised it needed some work (and some fact-checking), so I pulled out my old copy of Vitruvius "The Ten Books of Architecture" and started thumbing through it. Eventually wound up pulling out Tzonis and Lefaivre too... you know it's ...

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Wikipedia editing is addictive too! (Try to create a simple link from a blog post and wind up writing another encyclopedia article...)


While I was writing that last blog post I wanted to link to Wikipedia entries for van der Laan, proportional systems, and a number of other things... but there's no page for proportion (architecture), so I have to create one... and then I have to go through my thesis notes looking for the various ...

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On Limiting Languages (Old images from my thesis prompt a post...)


I happened upon a description of the Plastic Number as I was noodling about doing system backups and the like. For those not familiar with it, the Plastic Number is a proportional system developed by a Dutch monk which was based on experiments to determine perceptually what we are able to distinguish and compare.

van ...

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Wow, a whole day on graphics (I'm so out of practice...)


One of the interesting things about design is that theory tends to be too slow as a mechanism for accomplishing it in the real world. While you could work everything out from first principles every time you wanted to place a piece of text on a sheet of paper, you'd get out-competed by the ...

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Wiki-addiction takes hold (I was just going to read...)


Decided to spend a bit of time reviewing Modernist Architecture this evening. It's been a long time and I'm getting very rusty in pulling up names and buildings. Was a good time, basically just touched on Le Corbusier, Mies and started on Gropius. Then I happened to click on a link on a ...

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Ironic that post had the real answer within it (I should *read* now...)


Began by editing the play-in-design paper. Realised that it's too dense still. It needs to lead the reader in far more slowly than it does. So decided instead to write a quick piece about Modernism, and what about it was successful and useful (as well as what didn't tend to work).

That went ...

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I should write now (But I feel like sleeping instead)


Switched over to the development branch today for testing. Went fairly well, just a few bugs that crept up due to differences between the test framework and the real system. Pretty good considering it's an entirely new CMTS and Modem type being added to the system.

I should take an hour or two to ...

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Need to create some icons for the homepage (Well, really: need to create some pretty graphics so I don't go nuts...)


So I sat down fully intending to work on the thesis rewrite. Then I got distracted when I realised there was no link from anywhere save a few old blog postings to the page with the rewrite! There's also nothing from the homepage that takes you directly to the Python 3D Software collection, which ...

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