A proposal for the Buckminster fuller challenge 2010
People and building components alike are active players that receive, process and send data in real time in the transaction spaces of an augmented ecology of people and products. Only when everything and everyone is directly communicating to everyone and everything the world can evolve its brains and start thinking.
Explain your initiative in more depth and its stage of development.
The concept of quantumBIM is based on evolutionary developments of our time, which makes me aware of living inside evolution. I look at the world around me from the perspective of unfolding swarm behavior, where the members of the swarm are acting as simple agents following simple rules. In the swarm all members are unique identities that act bottom up as to drive the swarm.
I have acknowledged the paradigm shift from mass production to customization that is penetrating in all pores of society. As a practicing architect and as a research director at the university I have dived deeply into the challenges of nonstandard architecture and of proactive architecture. I have realized several nonstandard buildings and interactive installations as to illustrate the potential. The radical consequence of customization is that all building components will act as members of the swarm of building components, interacting with their immediate environment and with their users in real time. The real time interaction is administrated in and facilitated by the prototypical software quantumBIM.
QuantumBIM facilitates a New Kind of Building that can change shape and content in real time. Multiplicity and multimodality are key to the solution of the global problem of languishing sustainability.
QuantumBIM software has been tested in parts and has proven to work effectively. It comes down to very simple principles. The experts and stakeholders in the collaborative design game will only communicate bilaterally, peer to peer, one to one, and find the minimal amount of essential data to exchange to stimulate the other to perform to the best of their knowledge. When all experts work one to one, the network of connected knowledge is robust and acting strongly bottom up. There are a few simple quantifiable top down rules as to organize the context wherein the expert swarm operates.
How does your strategy and approach respond creatively and comprehensively to key issues?
The quantumBIM approach addresses a multitude of social, cultural, economic, ecological, and technological issues. In the building industry, which one of the largest industries of the world, there is a strong need to reduce failure costs, to reduce building mistakes, to increase performance [including being floodproof, hurricaneproof and earthquakeproof]. In my view only an inclusive communication protocol between all stakeholders may improve the poorly performing building industry, quantumBIM is a design tool to frame the swarm of stakeholders in a real time collaborative hive.
Clearly the quantumBIM software is a piece of technology, but at the same the improvements that it facilitates resides just as well between the ears of the players. By playing the participatory design game the players will become aware of the fact that the vast majority of current buildings, even the explicitly iconic, are actually based on old obsolete paradigms, that of mass production and consumerism. I am prepared to accept the radical consequences of customization, which opens the way for the long tail of the economy, the customized decentralized production from bits to atoms. I believe in the potential of the new participation economy, which is an radical form of direct democracy without the pitfalls of populism. A design team that acts in a distributed swarm exchanging data and design intent in real time, and buildings that are composed of locally smart building components that interact in the swarm of building components and communicate with their environment and their users certainly is a breakthrough in the world of the building industry. I think that quantumBIM, the quantum Building Information Model that is informed, that is able to process information and built to transmit processed information certainly represents a preferred state model for the New Kind of Building, revolutionizing the building industry worldwide, including Africa, the Americas, Australia and Asia.
My personal design universe consists of interacting populations of groups of points in space, wireless connected by force fields, aware of themselves, communicating with their immediate neighbors. My design universe consists of interacting point clouds, where each point thinks it is the center of the world, while in fact it is somewhere, just like our Earth is just somewhere in the Milky Way. Each point is an actor, always busy measuring and adjusting its position in relation to its peers. Each point is an actuator, triggering the execution of its internal program. Each point is an IPO, a receiver, processor and sender in one. Each point of my personal design point cloud displays behavior, it has character, it has style. Each point of the point cloud is a microscopic instrument to be played, a game to be unfolded.