Columbia GSAPP (George Showman)



Jan '05 - Jul '05

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    Cellular automatic fog

    By George Showman
    Apr 20, '05 6:40 PM EST

    Here are some pictures from my ongoing cellular automata work. I had put this aside after an early flirtation with coding in processing early in the semester, but have now come back to it and have finally made a system that exhibits some pretty interesting (if un-surprising) properties. Well, I suppose I would say that while it's not surprising, the overall affect of the thing is very beautiful and shows the kind of rippling change, a ground-swell of a kind, that I am very interested in this semester.

    I wish I could just post the processing code as an applet somewhere, but unfortunately I migrated the code to a java development platform (Eclipse, which isn't too bad) early in the semester, and haven't taken the time to re-wrap the code for export to the internet. You are perhaps scratching your head now. Anyway the point is, I would like to show you this thing moving because basically the cells go through endless cycles of birth, differentiation, and epidemic, and it's quite cool. The still shots don't really show enough. I will post the live applet shortly after my final review.

    In this first image, you see the various little cells, all trying to achieve a particular level of crowding (e.g. red wants two neighbors, green three, etc.). When they get too overcrowded, they mutate to a higher order (e.g. red becomes green, becomes blue, etc.) but at a certain critical point they turn 'diseased' and begin to destory everything around them, especially those of their own kind. This means that densities form in the fabric of cells, and then at a certain point the disease will tear huge holes in the densest parts. But there are also finer, less crowded zones that are rarely destroyed by disease. Etc....

    Here I'm must hiding the cells themselves and celebrating the buildup of the lines of the connections.

    A similar approach, but the diseased cells draw white lines. I love the depth this gives. It plays in well with my ideas for visualizing the 'virtual fog over L.A.' that is my studio project.


    • siggers

      beautiful. And interesting, though I have to say it is faaar outside my areas of expertise.

      Apr 21, 05 1:55 pm

      Very interesting, keep us updated on this project...

      Apr 21, 05 7:45 pm

      I want to see more. Hmmmm. I'm going to go and try to track down that post/thread you told me to read where you had commented.

      Apr 22, 05 12:18 am
      Mason White
      Ben Fry's work might also be of interest to you. Especially the project valence.
      Apr 22, 05 6:20 am

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About this Blog

I did an M.Arch. I at the GSAPP between 2002 and 2005. I started this blog only in my final semester, when I had Ed Keller as my studio critic.

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