Generative Design

The future of CAD

Letting materials speak

with one comment

Philosophers specialize in taking us out of the orbit of reality.  But, Manual DeLanda– surprised me, with a   philosophy  grounded on reality – on materials.

He unravels how materials dictate generative processes. While most credit the genome for natures creative process, DeLanda credits materials . He points out that

Materials have creative power of their own

Matter he says is Morphogenetically charged. Genes only play a role in orchestrating a pre-existing build capacity. He points out that “  orderly behavior can arise spontaneously”. Being a philosopher he is able to point out where things went wrong in our thinking about design, our historic practice of imposing our will on insert material – which has remained at the heart of Western thinking on design. Such crude imposition sadly, leads to the destruction of the  material world around us.


He points out that “form can emerge from matter without being imposed by the rational human mind” and suggest that,

artists enter into a partnership in the genesis of form

He convincingly argues against ideas of perfection – which has plagued design thinking for many centuries. Nature, he points out creates a pool of design, each slightly different within the same species as diversity. He points this  out as an essential part of their ability to evolve. He argues that it is heterogeneity and variety that drives evolution. He urges us to develop “a positive idea of differences“. Uniformity then implies  the inability to evolve – an end of the road phenomena for species that have no future.

You may find his article on ” Deleuze and the Use of Genetic Algorithm in Architecture ” interesting. But if you wish to spend an hour unlearning your lives learning on design. You may want to watch this.

Many thanks to the design morphogenesis blog for bringing this paradigm breaking philosopher to our notice.

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Written by Sivam Krish

February 16, 2010 at 4:22 am

One Response

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  1. Hi,

    That was a great resource.
    Nice to see other folks in Singapore interested in generative strategies.

    Best,
    Alvin.C

    Alvin.C

    March 1, 2010 at 1:58 pm


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