UCLA (A Center for Ants?)

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    It's a marathon, not a sprint

    By A Center for Ants?
    Oct 20, '08 8:08 PM EST

    So we're entering week 3 of 10 and things are off at a full clip by now. Our research studio has been doing background research on materials with relation to boat building and that's been quite interesting. Seems like there's a great deal of potential in carbon fiber but it's just so damn expensive and difficult to manufacture. Interesting stuff also with buckypaper making headlines today.

    In addition, we've gotten a chance to have tutorials on Gehry Technologies' Digital Project through the Greg Lynn studio. It's an incredibly complicated and nuanced program who's power in parametrics is evident right off the bat. In a lot of ways it seems a bit similar to the language of computer programming. Very orderly and explicit. Everything is defined and has a name. We've been just going through and doing small projects like instancing a panel across a surface etc. but the results are amazing and everyone acknowledges that it's extremely powerful. However, the interface leaves a lot to be desired and having a strong command of each of the commands is important. The problem is that the commands are extremely intricate with dozens of parameters and variables. And the documentation and GUI leave much to be desired. Granted it's the first version and has a long way to go. But there's no way I'd have been able to figure out ANY of this without a guided tutorial. We're basically deconstructing a case study as the next assignment and then building it parametrically so the formal system can be reapplied to a new condition. E.g. take Foster's Kansai system and allow it to be propagated across any volume that you input.

    Work load's been sort of high and I'm always just working for whatever is due the next day. So far I'm keeping my head above water but I'm worried that the first round of crits might be a little stressful. Make that a lot stressful.

    Studio with Yoshiharu Tsukamoto has been a great study in juxtapositions and the grass is always greener. He's fascinated by the phenomena of true indoor/outdoor (cliche i know) spaces in the Entenza case study program. Having lived here a while it seems like something played out. In return we're always fascinated by the tight physical constraints that force interesting spaces out of architecture in Tokyo.

    We visisted CSH 22 (Koenig) (was my 3rd time) and it was as amazing as ever. It has a lot to do with the site but Yoshiharu made a good point as there's the inherent desire for the sense of infinite (semi-)private space. The encapsulation of panoramic views is easy enough to do when you have a spectacular site like the Stahl house but what strategies can we extract with respect to the idea of true indoor/outdoor and how these might apply to a more median type of lot or housing. If it all sounds a little ambiguous, it's because it is at the moment. We're still trying to parse through all of our research and get our studio premise locked down in the next week.

    Waiting for my replacement camera charger to arrive so I can take some photos of the model of CSH #8 (Eames) that I made. It sounds a little undergrad architecture school but I actually am satisfied with this model and feel it's got a decent amount of craft.

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