The One About the Digital Design Guide:
Architects have embraced technology as a method of construction for centuries. From the dome of the Pantheon, to the use of steel to lighten structural building loads to create skyscrapers, if it helps us build our ideas, we, as architects have embraced technology. However, when it comes to digital design technology (using the computer as a means to improve the design process) the field of architecture has barely moved past the notion of a computerized drafting board and tee square.
The sentiment by the “romancers” I debate this topic with is that digital design techniques are about production, not design. To me, that is a bit like stating food exists only to provide fuel for the body. A rich design requires depth in the exploration, and breadth in its evaluation. This requires the visual, virtual and physical testing of materials, programming phases that include environmental simulation, inclusion of a community (professionals, owner, and project constituents) in the design process, peer review, integrated project delivery, and construction documentation including digital modeling as a communication tool.
Digital design is an honest media. If the design stinks, it is quite plainly revealed through digital representation, whether they be in the form of animations, plans, sections, elevations, or rapid prototyped physical models. As a step in design process it is essential to model a building in the computer to critically evaluate the key components of design, from form and materials, to construction methods, to all levels of sustainability. The goal of this site is to help expand, and move ahead with where digital design technology can take us.