Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Latency in Architecture

When I fly to,the western side of the US I typically like to fly during the day, but this time I'm flying at night.  I'm watching the cities pass below me with their grid work of lighting, thinking of fossils fuels, Mother Nature & the amazing force of the human factor.  We have created an incredible inter-connectivity between cities and cultures.

Distance was once marked by walking and song, then it was marked by the distance a tank of gas could take you.  Now geographic distance is marked by latency and ping time.  Our world is more interconnected than ever before, yet buildings still carry importance to our culture.  We still exist, we still get rained on & we still need shelter.

This is where I stumble.  This is where I want to say something bold like "the need for shelter will never fade, but the need for architecture has."  Has architecture taken a backseat to technology?  Are photos of buildings more important than how well they support their function?  Is it more about what they look like than what they are?  How shallow...

Through the lens of a small interconnected world, architecture is a space that encases one end of a connection, the start or end of a ping.  Architecture is still the physical embodiment of gathering or repose, but the even in the most private of spaces the ping gets through.

Technology in architecture is most easily discussed by practically looking at the tools and processes that we use to manage our businesses.  But let us not forget that technology has changed the way we use buildings, and let us push back on technology.

I do not believe this is done by ignoring technology, but rather by embracing so fully the push through to the other side can be reached more quickly.  That is what I intend to do.

At one point I considered really good architecture that which brought a person back outside, a space that blurred the lines of inside and outside.  Today I amend that and state that good architecture cuts through the technical haze, a space that makes technology invisible and overwrites a person's media obsession.

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