Despite its due criticism of previous theory, Michael Speaks’s essay provides yet another reactionary theoretical analogy to gnaw at the roots of the profession. Yes, working design in a spreadsheet mind-set complete with CNC milling as the place holder for the obsolete dot matrix printer is theoretically much more efficient for the innovative small practice. One can argue that efficiency breeds solutions, but at what cost? If the profession sacrifices a complex model of what architecture is and can be, where does that take us?
Architecture as information and production becomes merely a generation of speculation in steady supply instead of the very physical connective tissue of culture it has been and desperately needs to be. Thinking and doing are interconnected, but merely switching tools and terminology never generates innovation. Let’s hope we will have the courage as educators, students, and professionals alike to pursue any new truth we discover—imperfect though it may be—by any and every means available to us.
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