Sunday, July 21, 2013


Studying hard & hoping to pass.  Story of my life, kudos to Chuck.  I was lucky enough to see him twice during the 70s. Three times if you count sitting through  the whole show twice in Sheffield.

Back to the "Scalable Rectangular Rig" which I still regard as one of my best ideas ever.  A couple of months ago I realised that I could use it to generate curves based on a formula.  In short: graphing with X & Y axes.

It's just another feature of the "normalised curve parameters" that report the position of points along the line that hosts them.  The horizontal rungs slide up and down driven by the values Y1, Y2. Y3.  Previously I have always placed the points that define the curved spline by eye: nudging them around until I get the curve I want.  But it is very easy to label them as X1, X2, X3 and link them to their Y equivalents by way of a formula.

Of course you still have the ability to scale the rectangle up and down, plus vary its proportions with a "width factor" variable.  And by adjusting the formula you can also vary the shape of the curve.

One obvious application would be to revolve the curve around an axis.  Then you have a nice form-finding rig capable of generating a wide variety of forms.  In a way it's similar to the glass onion I posted about recently, but this time it's more controlled.

Not quite up to Zach's current Dynamo "hobby" but a small nod in the "computational" direction none the less.  And easier to set up, ... for me at least.

The original motivation for this was my recent paper on 3 buildings, prepared for RTC Auckland.  I was trying to simulate form-finding explorations for the Gherkin.  A series of systematic variations on the basic concept

As usual it all boils down to isolating a few key variables which control different aspects of a shape.  It helps to vary them one at a time.  It's a mass family of course with instance parameters, so you can make lots of copies, insert mass floors and explore different ways of achieving the same GFA.

For the  RTC session I also explored the spiral floorplates of the Gherkin in a bit more detail.  I;ve said it before & I'll say it again.  If (like me) you are interested in History of Architecture, Theory of Design or just How things Work ... then a BIM authoring tool like Revit is an amazing aid to research

No comments:

Post a Comment

I've been getting a lot of spam so had to tighten up comments permissions. Sorry for any inconvenience. I do like to hear from real people