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Embracing the tyranny of distance: space as an enabling constraint

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Architectural design is typically limited by the constraints imposed by physical space. If and when opportunities to attenuate or extinguish these limits arise, should they be seized? Here it is argued that the limiting influence of spatial embedding should not be regarded as a frustrating tyranny to be escaped wherever possible, but as a welcome enabling constraint to be leveraged. Examples from the natural world are presented, and an appeal is made to some recent results on complex systems and measures of interaction complexity.

Keywords: computer modelling; computer simulation; interaction; interaction complexity; natural architectures; networks; spatial location; termite mounds

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Science and Engineering of Natural Systems, School of Electronics and Computer Science, University of Southampton. 2: Evolutionary and Adaptive Systems, Department of Informatics, University of Sussex.

Publication date: November 1, 2009

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  • Technoetic Arts focuses upon the juncture between art, technology and the mind. Divisions between academic areas of study, once rigidly fixed, are gradually dissolving due to developments in science and cultural practice. This fusion has had a dramatic effect upon the scope of various disciplines. In particular, the profile of art has radically evolved in our present technological culture
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