Week 2

ARCH-2351 2015 Fall

Course ARCH-2351
Date 09.21
Learning Objectives
  • Reading 1 Presentation and Discussion
  • Unit 1 _Geometry: Elemental Objects (Vector, Line, Plane)
  • Code: Collections, Functions
Uses Tool(s)


Elemental Geometric Objects

Here is a more detailed treatment of this is in this excerpt from my upcoming book The Architect's Field Guide to Computation (with Kyle Steinfeld, published Routledge, anticipated 2016)

Example Files


Both project and readings are due in two weeks, on 10.05 .

Project 1

A. Wallpaper Algorithm - The equilateral triangle grid is the basis for myriad geometric wallpaper patterns. Write out an algorithm that generates the points of this grid, both in pseudocode (plain English) as well as in decod.es. Submit a .pdf with both the pseudocode and the code laid out side by side.


B. Generative Pattern - The example Fractals shows a pattern that results from iteratively applying a simple rule that replaces a line segment with a collection of line segments. The pattern that emerges can be surprisingly complex after just a few iterative steps. This fundamental iterative process can involve any geometric object whereby a generative rule specifies drawing or replacing the original object by a collection of like objects. For instance, in the example Inflation, the generative rule is to draw a polygon whose vertices are at the same fraction of a distance along each segment of the initial polygon. Try your hand at your own generative pattern, which could be playing with variations on the simple rule on line segments, but could also be based on another object (such as a circle, polygon, rectangle, polyline on a plane). You can stick with patterns in 2d, but you may also want to try out some generative rules that result in 3d patterns.

For pinup, prepare an image sequence of your generative pattern, showing the progression from its initial step to your chosen result. Follow these steps when taking screenshots:

  1. Use a maximized Perspective viewport for the scene.
  2. Use the rhino Command ViewCaptureToFile which allows selecting a viewport and render that viewport to a file. This command renders an image based on the pixel size of the viewport, so it's important to have the viewport as large as possible.
  3. Set the background color of the viewport to white, and hide the grid when capturing the file.

Your final submission (due one week after project pinup) must be submitted to the shared Dropbox folder, and should include cleaned up code (.ghx), process screenshots (as above), and archival of your work (a "finalized" piece or sequence that captures the project as compiled .pdfs or high res scans/photographs.

Reading 2

Benoit Mandelbrot, The Fractal Geometry of Nature , 1982, read p. 1 - 24
George Stiny, “New Ways to Look at Things” , Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design Anniversary Issue, 1998, p. 68-75
Cecil Balmond, Informal , 2007 excerpts (57 case study: Kunsthal, 109 definition of Informal, xi definition of pattern)
Interview with CB