Friday, 31 August 2007

Al Reflects on Reflexive Architecture

I got an IM last night from Scope Cleaver, my renowned Second Life architect chum, to join him at a walk-thru presentation by Keystone Bouchard of what is apparently known in the trade as Reflexive Architecture. I opted not to accept a teleport to the event, since I hate being the dork hovering in mid-air right in front of the presenter, blissfully unaware that he is obstructing proceedings while he waits for the site to rez. Instead I found my own way there.

Unfortunately, most of the presentation was over by the time I arrived *D'OH!* but what I saw was quite impressive, and certainly got the brain juices flowing.

The gist of Reflexive Architecture is that a building, at least in Second Life, can be scripted to respond and react to the people in and around it. A basic example might be small room that gets bigger as more people enter it. But once you start thinking in terms of a reactive building then all manner of ideas can flow from it. Howzabout a building that can pick up on key phrases and take appropriate actions? Maybe it just changes colour to suit your mood, or it could retrieve and present information to you as you go along, or fetch you a pina colada or the perfect white russian if you are a tad thirsty. I dunno... use your imagination!

Obviously, such behaviour requires scripted architecture - and Keystone has kindly provided a bunch of scripts on The Arch blog where, incidentally, you will find much more on Reflexive Architecture, including a number of machinima movies. Pictures (like those below) don't really tell you much, since they're basically static. Go and watch the movies. You might be impressed.

In this example, above, the construction consists of what looks to be semi-transparent bands, lying flat on the ground. AS you walk into the construction the bands rise up and create a sort of bubble around you. As you walk through it, so the bubble goes with you. Neat, huh?

By the way, the House That Delivers The Perfect White Russian has not been constructed yet, to the best of my knowledge.

1 comment:

PortSeven said...

Sounds a bit like Hogwarts to me!