An ANT’s-eye view of architecture.

Bruno Latour and Albena Yaneva, offering an ANT’s-eye view of architecture, point out how problematic it is to see a building as primarily an artefact in Euclidean space. A building has many more dimensions than three:

We should finally be able to picture a building as a navigation through a controversial datascape: as an animated series of projects, successful and failing, as a changing and criss-crossing trajectory of unstable definitions and expertise, of recalcitrant materials and building technologies, of flip-flopping users’ concerns and communities’ appraisals. That is, we should finally be able to picture a building as a moving modulator regulating different intensities of engagement, redirecting users’ attention, mixing and putting people together, concentrating flows of actors and distributing them so as to compose a productive force in time-space.

I think Latour’s criticisms hold true of BIM systems, too. While adding a few more meagre dimensions to the three honoured in traditional descriptive geometry, BIM is even more committed to the idea that a total documentation is possible.

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