Thursday, May 7, 2009

Residential Design

Scott Adams may be well known more for creating Dilbert cartoons based on a sort of corporate cubical culture humor, but in this excerpt from his blog he has a kernel of a good idea for residential design:
(Excerpt) "... As I work through the home design process, I'm struck by the fact there are so many clear rules. The process begs for programming more than art. For example, you want your kitchen near the interior door from the garage, and you want your washing machine relatively near the bedrooms, and so on. I should be able to tell my software my requirements for number of bedrooms, budget, and features, and have it spit out all the designs that meet my criteria. The software would optimize the house shape and orientation for my lot size and even make sure the plumbing distances were minimized. The program could make sure the design met all the local codes and restrictions. And it would be the greenest home that is practical.

The user would still make the final aesthetic decisions, but choosing only from a menu of homes that met his criteria. And he could walk through a 3D model before making any decisions. If he decided to add a bathroom, the entire floor plan would reconfigure to accommodate the change without breaking any rules.

So if your kid wants to become an architect, consider talking him out of it."
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Note to parents of future architecture students, architecture universities, and local planning departments: Apple Inc. advertises iPhone Apps with the very successful tag line, "There's an App for That" -- not sure if there's one titled, Residential Design, at this time