Rapid progress is being made on the development of machine learning models that are capable of producing original images, text, and audio. This prompts the questions: what changes when architecture comes from the machine? Is it possible to leverage this technology to design buildings, cities, and structures? Architecture ex Machina™️ (AexM) is a working group and knowledge share that is focused on exploring issues around the incorporation of machine learning into the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry.
Artificial intelligence and machine learning have the potential to drive dramatic change and disruption. As our industry is built on partnerships, we feel strongly that giving a voice to all parties is critical. The multi-disciplinary nature of the work will necessitate engagement from professionals of all kinds. AexM calls on participants from various backgrounds — from computer science and architectural design to neuroscience and AI ethics — to help invent the future of our practice.
How do we get from a present where design professionals don't need to consider software development a core part of their work to a future where some understanding of machine learning and its software becomes part of the daily conversation? How do we engage machine learning experts to communicate the nuances of architectural design, the complexity of construction projects, and the very real engineering challenges that surface during every project? How do we do all of this ethically and sustainably?
We need help answering these questions so we've created a forum to share ideas, engage in dialogue, and host our community:
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We envision a future where architects and engineers can produce more equitable, more efficient, more engaging environments at less material and capital expense by taking advantage of tools augmented by numerical optimization and backpropagation. We think designers should have the ability to design loss functions that describe their social, aesthetic, and cultural goals.
What are the things machine learning does well? What does machine learning do poorly? How might creative practitioners shape AI as a tool and as a form of discovery? What applications are already under investigation? We welcome contributions.
Architecture ex Machina was started by TEECOMlabs, the R&D Group at TEECOM, as a forum to explore issues we are encountering in our work in the architecture, engineering, and construction industries.