Initially helping the architects insaving time with their drawings, computer software has evolved to the point ofParametric modeling which allows the designer to work with certain features ofa building without having to re-calculate all the other features that areaffected by the changes they make.
This makes them extremely powerful designtools. Now we can make the most complex of the design forms in which all thelogistical calculations like loads on building, effect of solar radiation, costestimations and factors of error can be calculated pre-construction. An exampleof this is The Gherkin Tower in London since its design was guided mainly byparametric modelling. What makes it different from its type of sky-scrapers are3 factors: it’s round and not square, the thin top end turns into a bulge inthe middle while coming down, and the basis of it is spiral design. All thesecould easily be taken as purely aesthetic features, yet they all cater tospecific constraints.A key issue with Gherkin’s sizedbuildings is that whirlwinds are created at their base by the air currents thatswing around, making their surrounding area an uncomfortable place to be.
Toaddress this problem, the design firm SMG advised the architects to usecomputer models which, based on the mathematics of turbulence, simulate abuilding’s aerodynamic properties. The model showed that a cylindrical shaperesponds better to air currents than a square one and reduces whirlwinds. Thefact that the tower bulges out in the middle, reaching its maximal diameter atthe 16th floor, also helps to minimize winds at its slimmer base.As humans are bounded by an unwrittencode that modifies itself circumstantially from time to time in order so they areable to survive and inhabit as a society, buildings today are doing the same.If we look at the older structures around us we can see that they are designedand created around certain threads of natural and materialistic forcesgoverning that area. Buildings are carved out of the locally available materialand are shaped and designed to be climate responsive to that area.
Thesebuildings worked brilliantly in the past as they do today. But in the past,after a certain point there was little room for innovation because we werelimited by our time and technology but that is not the case today. What we needto understand is that in this age of globalization we are in a point of historywhere evolution is picking up speed and revolutionary discoveries are madeevery month or week or day.