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Design computation has profound impact on architectural design methods. This paper explains how computational design enables the development of biomimetic design processes specific to architecture, and how they need to be significantly different from established biomimetic processes in engineering disciplines. The paper first explains the fundamental difference between computer-aided and computational design in architecture, as the understanding of this distinction is of critical importance for the research presented. Thereafter, the conceptual relation and possible transfer of principles from natural morphogenesis to design computation are introduced and the related developments of generative, feature-based, constraint-based, process-based and feedback-based computational design methods are presented. This morphogenetic design research is then related to exploratory evolutionary computation, followed by the presentation of two case studies focusing on the exemplary development of spatial envelope morphologies and urban block morphologies.


Achim Menges. Biomimetic design processes in architecture: morphogenetic and evolutionary computational design. Bioinspiration & biomimetics. 2012 Mar;7(1):015003

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PMID: 22345390

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