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Cubes Magazine

Cubes Issue 87: Design is Digital

How are digital techniques affecting the practice and outcomes of design? Cubes Aug/Sept finds out.

  • On the cover of Cubes 87 is An Office Where Animals Live by teamLab Architects. Photo by Tomooki Kengaku / Nacasa and Partners (courtesy of teamLab Architects)

  • An Office Where Animals Live by teamLab Architects. Technology is used to create a high-density expression and encourage an emotional response at the office of in Tokyo. Photo by Tomooki Kengaku / Nacasa and Partners (courtesy of teamLab Architects)

  • Eric Phillips, Asia Partner at NBBJ, tells us about how ‘digital practice’ goes far beyond performance analysis and BIM at NBBJ. Photo © Gena Falzon

  • Lane 189 by Ben van Berkel / UNStudio. UNStudio is known as an innovator in developing the relationship between digital technology and architecture. This shopping mall in Shanghai shows how. Photo © Hufton + Crow (courtesy of UNStudio)

  • RACE Robotics Laboratory by Ministry of Design. This robotics and automation training facility in Singapore offers a strong expression of Industry 4.0 and all its precision. Photo by Edward Hendricks (courtesy of MOD)

  • Yusuke Hattori (Associate Director), Kaoru Mende (Principal) and Reiko Kasai (Managing Director), Lighting Planners Associates. We talk with LPA about the possibilities for lighting technology, as well as the importance of a sense of nature. Photo by Justin Loh

  • Chi She by Archi-Union Architects. Robotic fabrication was used to create an undulating brick wall for this Shanghai gallery. Photo by Lin Bian (courtesy of Archi-Union Architects)

  • How will automated transport change our cities? We look at the potential impact of automated vehicles and drones. Image: ‘Urban Droneport’ concept by Saul Ajuria Fernandez

BY Narelle Yabuka

2 August, 2017

Design is digital. We’re being affirmative with that statement because every day it seems more evident that a threshold has been crossed in terms of the way digital technology is used in design and architecture practice. No longer is digital technology used just for drawing, organising, modelling and analysing; it has become generative, contributing to the creative process and affecting physical outcomes.

Not only does this disrupt the conventional role of design authorship; it also makes possible forms that we might not otherwise have been able to imagine and construct – particularly when new fabrication technologies are added to the mix. There are a lot of unknowns out there, and ‘possibility’ is a word that you’ll come across repeatedly in these pages.

The new relationship we find ourselves negotiating with our tools, and the new design outcomes that can result, are key themes we explore in this issue. But we also look more broadly at how technology is being incorporated into spaces and affecting our experiences of them – for example, via responsive digital artworks. Additionally, we investigate how the new digital habits we are adopting in our everyday lives are affecting the built environment. And what will our new technology-fuelled existence do to our relationship with nature and traditional modes of craft?

There’s plenty to contemplate in this issue. Including the winners of the inaugural INDE.Awards! We’re hitting newsstands this week, so grab your copy!

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