Archinect - Columbia GSAP (Derek Lindner) 2017-10-22T02:34:40-04:00 Masses: Media, Culture, Housing, or, Rent-boy's Dilemma. Derek Lindner 2006-03-22T21:40:42-05:00 >2011-09-23T13:01:05-04:00 <p>[I was going through some stuff from last semester, and came across this entry that I started then and never finished, so I'm posting it now. Better late than never.] <br><br> Someone remarked the other day that housing studio is<br> particularly earnest this year. Last year, the studio site was on<br> Manhattan's west side, and though the aim was to design public<br> housing (as it always is), it was still in the proximity of art<br> galleries, shopping and urban amenties, offering the temptation<br> to incorporate these as the prominent contextual elements.<br><br> This year we're working in Brownsville, a neighborhood that<br> claims New York's highest rates of poverty and incarceration. The<br> sites that we have have to work on are adjacent to large arrays<br> of 60s superblock public housing, elevated train lines, vacant<br> lots, and derelict buildings. A lot of students (including<br> myself) admit to feeling a certain malaise. It's difficult to<br> face the most brutal parts of America's housing policy legacy and<br> the e...</p> the problem with voronoi Derek Lindner 2006-02-27T00:39:41-05:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <p>"voronoi tessellation is like a blender. <br> it doesn't matter what you put into it, <br> it comes out looking like a voronoi."<br><br> - DP, an astute student <br></p> a new semester Derek Lindner 2005-09-29T01:16:50-04:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <p>I've just finished the first three weeks of my second year. <br> Here's the lineup: studio, Enclosures and Environments 2, <br> History of Theory, and a fabrication lab based on using <br> the school's new waterjet cutter.<br><br> Studio is Columbia's infamous housing studio. Everyone works in<br> pairs, so I have a studio partner--heretoafter referred to as<br> KA--who I will in all likelyhood be spending more time with <br> than my wife. <br><br> E&amp;E 2 is continuation of E&amp;E 1. Fortunately, I received a waiver<br> for that, having taken a roughly equivalent class as an<br> undergraduate. The first few weeks of E&amp;E 2 have so far been<br> rudimentary--what could have been taught in E&amp;E 1 that would<br> qualify as more basic? I hear it gets tougher later, but for now,<br> we're looking at the psychrometric chart. Not really grad-level<br> material.<br><br> History of Theory, my third course, reinforces my hunch that the<br> school includes E&amp;E in the curriculum only out of necessity to<br> remain an accredited professional school. Dean Mark Wigl...</p> *how* much longer? Derek Lindner 2005-04-17T13:11:32-04:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <p>critic: How many days until the final review? <br> student: Ten days. <br> critic: Ten days. 240 hours... that's... six 40-hour weeks. Minus, say, 25% for sleeping, so... four and a half weeks left. You guys can get a lot of work done in four and a half weeks. <br></p> Turning up the Volume Derek Lindner 2005-03-13T00:59:23-05:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <p>The GSAPP is housed nearly entirely in Avery Hall, a building far too small to contain all the activity that comprises the daily life of the department. The school is short on resources and high on density, one result of which is that the department is still highly flyer- or poster-oriented, and the building itself is used as the primary means of intra-departmental communication. If ever a message needs to be disseminated to the masses (or even, in some cases, to specific individuals), it appears taped up in a stairwell or elevator, or on a door or wall. Usually it's fairly mundane stuff--job postings ('work in the slide library!'), lost eyeglasses, info on today's reviews or lectures.<br><br> Its rather ironic that the same department that is pushing for architects to increase their technology and media savvy haven't figured out how to use e-mail yet.<br><br> This week it got a little more interesting. During the Ben van Berkel lecture, unknown operatives plastered the building with anti-Volume ...</p> what can you do with a wire? Derek Lindner 2005-02-21T19:02:20-05:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <p>A presentation by <a href="" target="_blank">Michael Silver</a> this afternoon on new fabrication technologies got me musing about the mathematical problems involved with the use of two computer-controlled machines he showed: a hot-wire foam cutter and a bandsaw. <img src=""><br><br> With both machines, you're bound by the limits of only being able to cut with a straight line through a volume of material, so each cut creates a ruled surface (or more specifically, one of a limited subset of ruled surfaces--no <a href="" target="_blank">Moebius strips</a> or <a href="" target="_blank">Pluecker's Conoids</a> allowed). <br><br> What volumes can be formed from a combination of such cuttable surfaces? It seems fairly intuitive that because of the cutter's limitations, the shapes must be continuous, non-self-intersecting, and holeless. There is also some sort of convexity requirement, thought I'm not sure exactly how to phrase it--I don't know a mathematically strict definition of concavity and curvature that would categorize all the shapes you can cut--hypars, hyperboloids, etc--together. I'm pretty sure ...</p> OpenOffice for Architects Derek Lindner 2005-02-19T00:42:31-05:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <p>I'm trying out OpenOffice, an open source MS Office suite replacement, for all my word processing and spreadsheet needs this semester. Though I haven't had opportunity to use OO extensively, so far it's working out. <br><br> In fact, it is completely exceeding my expectations at the moment. <br> Either the programmer(s) behind the autocomplete feature's built-in dictionary are architecture buffs, or they have perfected the direct mind link interface for the application. Consider the following suggestions made by OO's autocomplete feature, offered as its best guess for the given text: <br><br> cor -&gt; Corbusier <br> rie -&gt; Rietveld <br> doe -&gt; Doesburg <br> sch -&gt; Schr&Atilde;&fnof;&Acirc;&curren;der<br><br> Note that this was for the first, not subsequent instances, of each word, so OO isn't simply scanning back through the document to find matches. I'm floored. I'd hardly be surprised if I typed in a good intro sentence and OO autocompleted an entire 800-word essay on <i>16 Points of Plastic Architecture</i>. <br></p> KVA rocks Derek Lindner 2005-02-17T01:17:49-05:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <p>Wednesday night is lecture night at Columbia. Wood auditorium fills with local architects (famous and otherwise), Wigley spins one of his nigh-unbearably-witty intros, the lights dim, and we get a 90-minute show. Afterwards, cheap wine flows. <br><br> There are always one or two rock stars on the roster (last semester, it was Koolhaas and Gehry), but I often learn more and am more inspired by the less well known speakers. Last semester, it was Jurgen Mayer H. How can you not like a guy with an obsession for envelope security panel patterns? And who knew that versions were made in lead in the early 1900s? <br><br> Tonight's lecture was Sheila Kennedy of <a href="" target="_blank">KVA</a> and MATx. I must still be a geek at heart, electroluminescent plywood makes my heart beat faster. Their approach to technology is closer to what I'm accustomed to from working in tech for years--optimistic, pragmatic, inventive. A little more intellectual property, a little less intellectualism. Is it architecture? Who cares? It's nice work.</p> v-day in studio Derek Lindner 2005-02-14T11:07:27-05:00 >2011-09-23T13:01:02-04:00 <p>I haven't gotten a cheap supermarket valentine with candy hearts in about 10 years. This morning, my desk (and all the other studio desks) was graced with a Batman valentine and three necco hearts. Mine bear the valentines-appropriate messages 'only you,' 'get real,' and--the best--'let's read.' I think that last one makes a great pickup line. </p> Loos is a hoot Derek Lindner 2005-02-09T00:26:18-05:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <i>"We call [the plumber]</i> installateur. <i>That's wrong. For this man is the upholder of the germanic way of life.</i> - Adolf Loos, The Plumbers <br><br> I'm in the midst of Frampton's History 2 (1880-1960) course. This week we look at Loos, the firebrand of Vienna, defender of plumbers, bathers, and shoe-cobblers, enemy of degenerate ornamentalizers, aristo-bourgeois pretenders, and architects. I haven't read this much Loos in such a brief interval before, and in doing so I now see a much more nuanced and powerful view than is usually attributed to him. <br><br> Frampton admitted on the first day of class that Columbia is a 'boot camp' and that he 'could never have survived here,' and in deference to our workload has drastically pruned the readings to bare minimum--perhaps half the volume we had last semester. He has truly been ruthless. I am having no difficulty keeping abreast of the readings so far, and in fact have some extra time during my daily commute for 'extra-curricular' readings, meaning thi... One down, five to go Derek Lindner 2005-01-22T15:00:06-05:00 >2011-11-24T09:05:52-05:00 <p>This past week began my second semester (of six) at Columbia. Reasons to be excited about the coming semester: <br><br> WMDs. Columbia is augmenting its 'WMD program' and building a new fabrication lab. In addition to the 3D printer and laser cutters, we have a new 5-axis CNC machine ("five axes does <i>not</i> mean that it can cut time," one of the instructors sadly informed us), and supposedly other new toys arrive every day. I don't know that I'll get to use any of these this semester, but it's good to have the resources and see what people do with them. <br><br> The Digital Show. Last night the best work from all of last semester's visual studies (i.e., digital media) classes was presented. This includes filmmaking, basic and advanced modeling &amp; rendering, and more conceptual and experimental work (e.g. spatial dataforming). This semester, I'm in two workshops, on topological form and simulation. After last night's show, I'm really looking forward to these. <br></p>