Building Beauty 2020-2021
The course had four modules: Studio, Appropriate Construction, The Nature of Order and Beautiful Software. This page acts as an index of my weeknotes and a curated selection of links to some of the highlights.
This was the core of the course and was hands-on from day one. We did four main Studio projects. Here are quick links to the final results of each:
- Ornament – A box for my Aeropress filters
- Furniture – A lamp for my living room
- House – A retreat for thinking
- Individual Project – A home office with life
My house project won the award for methodology at the 2021 HOME competition.
The Appropriate Construction module brought in speakers who'd worked with or who's work was inspired by Alexander. It mostly focused on the use of materials. Here are the sessions where I published notes:
The Nature of Order
- The 15 fundamental properties – comparing the life in two gardens
- Mirror of the Self – trying to understand this quite tricky concept
- Unfolding – building through unplanned step-by-step transformations
My notes for the Beautiful Software seminar are a bit sparse. It was really interesting to try to map Alexander's work to our experience of software, but there were loads of rabbit holes and since it was the first year, we lacked a bit of structure.
- Where to start? – some notes from discussions around how we even begin to figure out what beautiful software looks like
- Scale – different levels of scale require different structures, both in architecture and software
- Topologise – computer-generated building designs based on A Pattern Language
- An attempt at grouping our discussions based on concepts referenced from Alexander's work