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Research activity at Architecture explores a wide variety of significant research areas within architecture and the built environment. Among these is the better exploitation of innovative construction technologies and ICT to optimise 'total building performance', as well as reduce waste and environmental impact. Sustainable architectural and urban design is an important component of this. To this end, the Cluster for Research in Design and Sustainability (CRiDS) focuses its research energies towards developing resilient responses to the social, environmental and economic challenges associated with urbanism and cities, in both the developed and developing world.

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Supporting reinterpretation in computer-aided conceptual design

Jowers, I. and Prats, M. and Lim, S. and McKay, A. and Garner, S. and Chase, S. AHRC (Funder), EPSRC (Funder) (2008) Supporting reinterpretation in computer-aided conceptual design. In: EUROGRAPHICS Workshop on Sketch-Based Interfaces and Modeling, 2008-06-11 - 2008-06-13.

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Abstract

This paper presents research that aims to inform the development of computational tools that better support design exploration and idea transformation - key objectives in conceptual design. Analyses of experimental data from two fields - product design and architecture - suggest that the interactions of designers with their sketches can be formalised according to a finite number of generalised shape rules defined within a shape grammar. Such rules can provide a basis for the generation of alternative design concepts and they have informed the development of a prototype shape synthesis system that supports dynamic reinterpretation of shapes in design activity. The notion of 'sub-shapes' is introduced and the significance of these to perception, recognition and the development of emergent structures is discussed. The paper concludes with some speculation on how such a system might find application in a range of design fields.