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With the invention of IT, it did change the way people work other than the way people live. It helps people to save time and cost to produce even better work compared to working manually. Most of the works can be done with paperless in the electronic way. Other than that, it has the ability for people to produce mass production in a short time.
"Electronic mail, groupware, telecommuting and videoconferencing, have become relatively standard technologies to enhance group processes. These technical innovations have made it possible for work teams to communicate at anytime, anyplace and anywhere." (Johnson & Clayton, 1998) IT brings benefits for the people who work in group, it makes people convenience in communications and allows them to have group discussions at anytime, in order to produce a better and quality result. "Information technology can significantly improve work group productivity by increasing the speed and decreasing the cost of communication and coordination." (Johnson & Clayton, 1998)
At the same time, people are also able to transfer or exchange data and information with the internet technology by using the electronic mail or several software such as Dropbox, Virtualbox and etc. They can instantly get all kind of data and information in electronic forms from the certain person that they are communicating with. In this way, people manage to save cost and time in travelling around to get all the documents that they want. "The top three organizational effects were: allowed business to be done at greater distances, shortened work cycle time, and reduced the need for clerical support staff." (Johnson & Clayton, 1998)
With all these advanced technologies, the way of architects think in designing a building has been changed. The design of architecture will be demanded on the conceptualization, aesthetic or functionality. It is because of the advancement of the technologies has been resulted in the lost of the basic function of a building.
In the past, people have to send letters by putting them into the post-box, shopping in shopping malls, super markets and retails or do research and borrow books in the library. With the advanced technology, all these activities can be done by using email technology, online shopping and web searching for information or download e-books from the internet. Nowadays, people are too relied on using the technology to do everything, they can achieve their goal or complete their task by using the internet without leaving the chair. Architects have to design with the aim of beautify the space instead of the functionality of it because the need of built space has been reduced. As a result of this, many buildings were designed in curvilinear forms with the assist of information technology. "IT has freed the architect to create heretofore unaccomplished curvaceous form, and new service areas are emerging in the "information age" frontier marketplace." (Larry R. Barrow, 2000)
Other than that, IT has impacted architecture in the design process as well other than just the form. In the end of the twentieth century, architects are starting to design and generate ideas by using computer. Complex and unique design of architecture can be done with computerized and the invention of computer aided software such as AutoCAD, InteriCAD, Adobe software, Rhinoceros, 3D Studio Max, CATIA (Computer Aided Three-dimensional Interactive Application) and many more.
With all this computer aided software, architects are able to save time and create unique design that cannot be done by manually. Other than that, it enabled architects to have accurate measurement for the space calculation, in order to create realistic visual of the designed building.
In the twenty-first century, "computerization and the improvement of design technology and practice are two of the most important technology in the architecture industry. Improving design technology means the development of new design tools that help designers spend less time and effort on data collection, computation, and preparation of design documentation, and more on problem solving." (Hugues Rivard, 2000) It is clear that computer aided software has already become one of the design tools in the designing process in the architecture field.
Drawings are the main output of the design process in architectural and there are two types of drawings which are the two-dimensional drawings and three-dimensional drawings. Two-dimensional drawing defined as having all elements in a flat surface and normally it comes with only two dimensions either length and width or width and height, without any depth or thickness. And, three-dimensional drawing defined as images or pictures with the objects that come with all the three dimensions which are the length, width and height.
Furthermore, drawings are produced by using the computer aided software with the application of virtual reality (VR). "VR is a computer-generated world involving one or more human senses and generated in real-time by the participants actions. The real-time responsiveness of the computer to the participant's action distinguishes VR from other kinds of computer-generated simulations. The participant in a VR environment is perceiver and creator at the same time, in a world where the object of perception is created by actions." (Daniela Bertol, 1997)
A virtual model can be created with the application of VR in the computer aided software to simulate reality for a three-dimensional image. This model enabled architects to have a detailed planning and predict any kind of technical issues, in order to achieve the demands of realism. Besides, it allows architects to visualize spaces efficiently and produce a most truthful image of a building. Moreover, the real image of the building can be seen in the computer or printed it out before it is built. Thus, architects are able to edit or change the design if there is any unpleasant feel or it looks unsightly.
Virtual reality (VR) is clearly introduced in the previous contents. From the research, VR applications have also been used in various fields like medicine, astronomy, entertainment, sport, art and etc. And, it has been used as a design tool in architecture design. We can easily observe how the characteristic of VR such as interaction, immersion and three-dimensionality, react in the architecture field. By the application of VR, rendering tools have been provide for perception, evaluation and the aesthetic view of an architecture environment before construction from the change of perspective. Hereby, a question will be bring up into this content - How does VR use as a design tool in architecture design?
Based on the investigation of design issues through the year goes, the design process has been improved and became interesting after the applied of VR in the architecture field. However, using VR as a design tool has the least potentiality among the VR application. Traditionally, the process of concept ideas input was running with hand-rendered, two-dimensional representations or sketches by writing materials such as pencil, paint or ink on paper but it can now be transformed with the immersive way to produce preliminary sketches or three-dimensional visuals with computer-assisted technology. It is all credit to the implementation of VR.
During the implementation of VR in the architecture design, the three-dimensional modeler 3DM that has been developed at the University of North Carolina created the three-dimensional models by using a HMD system and hand-held pointing device. By the providing of this application, models can be transform and edit with the capabilities of copying, pasting, cutting, moving and scaling and even can be manipulated with the immersive ways.
Design Process from Sketches to Models
There are many stages in the design process such as mapping, diagrams, sketches, construction drawing and etc. Sketches and working drawing with the concept ideas input are important while they can be differentiates by the accuracy, detail and amount of representative information. When the input of the concept ideas on the sketches are enough to be expressive and able to develop into working drawing which mean it can be program and execute by the computer.
Computer-aided design (CAD) is useful and convenience in modeling because it provides valuable tools. For an example, a unique curved wall design of a facade can be extrude with a round shape of opening while its model can be implement with exact dimensions given of the wall and the opening. And, repeating operation can be implemented in the CAD application as well.
In the other hand, the immediacy of the process by translating a sketch straight into a functional model can enhance the act of creativity and the understanding of the three-dimensional space.
Two-dimensional Media and Scale Models
The two-dimensional media such as paper is always using in the design of architecture as the communication of concept ideas into the design development. Other than that, the presentation drawings such as the construction drawing, detailing drawing and three-dimensional perspective are representing the three-dimensional objects with two-dimensional media. Even every output of the computerized such as CAD has to be present with the two-dimensional media by displaying on the screen or printed on paper.
There is another option for the design of architecture which is the scale models while it can define the understanding and fulfill the usage of the unbuilt three-dimensional space. However, the quality of the space has been reduced due to the model cannot be inhabited and user cannot experience from the inside.
While the running of design process takes place in a virtual environment where the designer is inside the product of his design is called immersive design and different conceptions will be bring to the act of creativity by this process. The creation of form is possible in the immersive design environment like the raising of walls, subtraction and rotation of the objects. Floors and stairs can be built and edited with the reaction by the perceptual impact. Boolean operations of addition or subtraction can be used for the design which based on volumes to allow the act of molding and carving motion.
The different values have been assumed while the implementation of traditional compositional rules changed from two-dimensional representations into three-dimensional immersive environment. Proportions between various architectural elements can be verified by inhabiting the space.
Though to date, immersive design should be realize with the virtual reality application which will revolutionize the design of architecture. The discussion of the traditional act of designing should be carry out for the architect to adapt to the notion of sketching in space and being inside and a direct experience of three-dimensional space.