Overview

> Software is omnipresent.
> Every computer is driven by software.
> Software is composed of algorithms, sets of rules, that describe processes.
> Algorithms are a way for humans to negotiate with machines, a strange and beautiful communication.

In recent years, designers have become increasingly interested in this algorithmic approach. They have transformed software into a new material to design with. ‘Generative Design’ (sometimes called Computational Design) emerged.

In this 2-week workshop the students were concerned with the implications, the potential and aesthetics of Generative Design. They were liberated from thinking about processes only in terms of programs executed on computers. It is much more vital to understand the value of process-based design regardless of the context or system it happens on.

Focusing on the manifold potentials and implications of this algorithmic approach – What are its effects, its traces, or signatures? – students were presented with a series of small exercises, each one depicting an intrinsic property of Generative Design.

The aim of this course was to collectively generate a meaningful assemblage of contributions illustrating the potential, virulence, and beauty of Generative Design. Students conceived a series of works ranging from computer-generated posters to interactive objects and installations, to concepts commenting on software itself. This culminated in an exhibition which shed a little bit of light on the strange and beautiful world of algorithmic design.

Because of the strong connection between an algorithmic approach and programming, students worked with the programming environment Processing.