Article

An evolutionary system for design exploration

Authors:
To read the full-text of this research, you can request a copy directly from the author.

Abstract

This paper reports on the development of a multi-objective evolutionary developmental design environment, called EDDE. The goal of the system is to make it easier for designers to use evolutionary techniques to explore design possibilities. The system consists of a generic evolutionary core into which a set of design specific scripts need to be plugged in. The system uses a web based client-server architecture that can either be run on a single computer or on multiple computers in parallel. Initial experiments have shown the system to be effective in evolving designs.

No full-text available

Request Full-text Paper PDF

To read the full-text of this research,
you can request a copy directly from the author.

... However, the majority of MDO applications related to building energy-performance are conducted by researchers within the engineering field with a focus on optimizing mechanical systems or façade configurations (Asadi et al., 2012; Adamski, 2007; Wright, Loosemore, and Farmani, 2002 ). Only a few applications have explored the application of MDO from a designer's perspective, such as the works of Caldas, Janssen and Yi and Malkawi (Caldas, 2008; Janssen, 2009; Yi and Malkawi, 2009 ). However, these applications are limited to academic experimental settings as conducted by the research team as opposed to designers. ...
... As a result, the examination of methods adoptable by designers remains unexplored. Furthermore, while the importance of form-exploration during the early stage of the design process is addressed, usually a simplified geometry is adopted for proof of concept due to the limited flexibility of said precedents' framework (Flager et al., 2009; Janssen, 2009). As a result, the relationship between designed form-exploration and energy-performance has been largely excluded. ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper explores the application of a novel multi-disciplinary design optimization (MDO) framework to the early stage design process, through a case study where the designer serves as the primary user and driver. MDO methods have drawn attention from the building design industry as a potential means of overcoming obstacles between design and building performance feedback to support design decision-making. However, precedents exploring MDOs in application to the building design have previously been limited to driving use by engineers or research teams, thereby leaving the incorporation of MDO into a design process by designers largely unexplored. In order to investigate whether MDO can enable the ability to design in a performance environment during the conceptual design stage, a MDO design framework entitled Evolutionary Energy-Performance Feedback for Design (EEPFD) was developed. This paper explores the designer as the primary user by conducting a case study where the application of EEPFD to a single family residential housing unit is incorporated. Through this case study EEPFD demonstrates an ability to assist the designer in identifying higher performing design options while meeting the designer’s aesthetic preferences. In addition the benefits, limitations, concerns and lessons learned in the application of EEPFD are also discussed.
... In this field, many researches were focused on design space exploration. For design exploration, Janssen [35] proposed an evolutionary system. Turrin et al [71] developed a method with combined parametric modelling and genetic algorithms for design exploration of performance driven geometries. ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Design optimization, as one of the major generative design methods, has been studied ever since the 1960s. However, half a century later, in an urban design context, it is still in the research and experimental phase and rarely employed in actual projects. This paper aims to reflect design optimisation methods through a comprehensive review from the perspective of historical development, competitors' success and future trends. It also proposes a conceptual framework to enhance current optimisation methods with machine learning for generative urban design.
... While architectural designers have always considered multiple performance aspects, the capacity to interact directly with environmental and other parameters is potentially one of the more significant shifts in design activity. Researchers are exploring ways to link environmental and other functional data with parametric design at the early stages of design [8], and in some case experimenting with generative algorithms to produce optimal design configurations [9]. ...
Article
Full-text available
The author and associated researchers have in previous projects adapted videogame technology for design in the context of architectural design education. This paper reflects on this body of research: the original motivations and aspirations; what threads may be productively revisited; how contemporary shifts to parametric design and building information modelling may be incorporated; and considers how some aspects of game play, in particular competition, may seedInterdisciplinary Design environments for Engineering and Architecture (IDeEA).
... In addition, in order to better incorporate energy simulation results for design decision making, rapid evaluation of design alternative is needed [58]. To overcome these limitations, a group of efforts focus on enabling rapid design alternative generation, evaluation, and a comparison of analysis results with tradeoff studies for identifying "best fits" across competing objectives [13,[59][60][61][62][63][64][65][66][67][68][69]. Another focus area is the promotion of the sensitivity analysis (SA) and uncertainty analysis (UA) to support the decision maker in identifying the most sensitive parameters to make the designer aware of the risks associated with each option, in particular if they affect a specific performance aspect [70][71][72][73][74]. Lastly, a group of efforts focus on the application of multicriteria decision making (MDCM) as the decision-making process for addressing multiple competing criteria and uncertainty inclusive of energy performance feedback [75][76][77][78][79]. ...
Article
In pursuit of including energy performance as feedback for architects’ early stage design decision making, this research presents the theoretical foundation of a designer oriented Multidisciplinary Design Optimization (MDO) framework titled Evolutionary Energy Performance Feedback for Design (EEPFD). Through a comprehensive literature review and gap analysis EEPFD is developed into an MDO methodology that provides energy performance as feedback for influencing architects’ decision making more fluidly and earlier than other approaches to date. Secondly, in response to the lack of an MDO best practice EEPFD is investigated and evaluated through two experiments. The first experiment demonstrates the ability to utilize EEPFD provided energy performance as feedback to pursue multiple architectural designs with competing objectives and tradeoffs. The second experiment identifies performance boundaries as a best practice for MDO applications to the early stage architectural design processes. The research synthesizes the results into the basis for measuring these performance boundaries as a best practice in the context where Architects must gauge multiple design concepts with varying complexity coupled with performance objectives through EEPFD, thereby enhancing the influence of energy performance feedback on the early stage design process. Finally, future research into the use of performance boundaries for conceptual energy performance design exploration is discussed.
... The development of Dexen started in 2009 at the Design Automation Lab at the National University of Singapore under a number of different research projects Janssen, 2013). A predecessor to Dexen was developed at the CRIDA lab at the University of Melbourne (Janssen, 2009). The general framework underlying both of these systems was developed by the author as part of his PhD research (Janssen, 2004;Janssen & Frazer, 2005). ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Visual programming languages enable users to create computer programs by manipulating graphical elements rather than by entering text. The difference between textual languages and visual languages is that most textual languages use a procedural programming model, while most visual languages use a dataflow programming model. When visual programming is applied to design, it results in a new modelling approach that we refer to 'visual dataflow modelling' (VDM). Recently, VDM has becoming increasingly popular within the design community, as it can accelerate the iterative design process, thereby allowing larger numbers of design possibilities to be explored. Furthermore, it is now also becoming an important tool in performance-based design approaches, since it may potentially enable the closing of the loop between design development and design evaluation. A number of CAD systems now provide VDM interfaces, allowing designers to define form generating procedures without having to resort to scripting or programming. However, these environments have certain weaknesses that limit their usability. This paper will analyse these weaknesses by comparing and contrasting three VDM environments: McNeel Grasshopper, Bentley Generative Components, and Sidefx Houdini. The paper will focus on five key areas: * Conditional logic allow rules to be applied to geometric entities that control how they behave. Such rules will typically be defined as if-then-else conditions, where an action will be executed if a particular condition is true. A more advanced version of this is the while loop, where the action within the loop will be repeatedly executed while a certain condition remains true. * Local coordinate systems allow geometric entities to be manipulated relative to some convenient local point of reference. These systems may be either two-dimensional or three-dimensional, using either Cartesian, cylindrical, or spherical systems. Techniques for mapping geometric entities from one coordinate system to another also need to be considered. * Duplication includes three types: simple duplication, endogenous duplication, and exogenous duplication. Simple duplication consists of copying some geometric entity a certain number of times, producing identical copies of the original. Endogenous duplication consist of copying some geometric entity by applying a set of transformations that are defined as part of the duplication process. Lastly, exogenous duplication consists of copying some geometric entity by applying a set of transformations that are defined by some other external geometry. * Part-whole relationships allow geometric entities to be grouped in various ways, based on the fundamental set-theoretic concept that entities can be members of sets, and sets can be members of other sets. Ways of aggregating data into both hierarchical and non-hierarchical structures, and ways of filtering data based on these structures need to be considered. * Spatial queries include relationships between geometric entities such as touching, crossing, overlapping, or containing. More advanced spatial queries include various distance based queries and various sorting queries (e.g. sorting all entities based on position) and filtering queries (e.g. finding all entities with a certain distance from a point). For each of these five areas, a simple benchmarking test case has been developed. For example, for conditional logic, the test case consists of a simple room with a single window with a condition: the window should always be in the longest north-facing wall. If the room is rotated or its dimensions changed, then the window must re-evaluate itself and possibly change position to a different wall. For each benchmarking test-case, visual programs are implemented in each of the three VDM environments. The visual programs are then compared and contrasted, focusing on two areas. First, the type of constructs used in each of these environments are compared and contrasted. Second, the cognitive complexity of the visual programming task in each of these environments are compared and contrasted.
... al.'s ThermalOpt along with the collaborative works of Tuhus-Dubrow with Krarti and Yi with Malkawi. EPPD utilizes an asynchronous decentralised evolutionary approach to accelerate the feedback process such as through exploration of roof overhangs (Janssen, 2009). GENE_ARCH is an exploration framework used to examine façade configurations and shape generations with consideration towards energy and daylighting (Caldas, 2008). ...
Article
To better support urban designers in planning sustainable, resilient, and livable urban environments, new methods and tools are needed. A variety of computational approaches have been proposed, including different forms of spatial analysis to evaluate the performance of design proposals, or the automated generation of urban design proposals based on specific parameters. However, most of these propositions have produced separate tools and disconnected workflows. In the context of urban design optimization procedures, one of the main challenges of integrating urban analytics and generative methods is a suitable computational representation of the urban design problem. To overcome this difficulty, we present a holistic data representation for urban fabrics, including the layout of street networks, parcels, and buildings, which can be used efficiently with evolutionary optimization algorithms. We demonstrate the use of the data structure implemented for the software Grasshopper for Rhino3D as part of a flexible, modular, and extensible optimization system that can be used for a variety of urban design problems and is able to reconcile potentially contradicting design goals in a semi-automated design process. The proposed optimization system aims to assist a designer by populating the design space with options for more detailed exploration. We demonstrate the functionality of our system using the example of an urban master-design project for the city of Weimar.
Article
To transform the existing energy systems towards renewable energy sources, buildings need to use less energy, use energy more efficiently and harness local renewable energy sources. For the design of energy-efficient buildings, building energy simulation of varying sophistication is commonly employed. Types of simulations range from simple, static calculations to sophisticated dynamic simulation. Especially for building retrofit many assumptions on construction, material etc. have to be taken, which increases the uncertainty of simulation results. In conjunction with simulation, methods of Building Performance Optimization are increasingly employed. They are able to identify best performing designs however do not provide insights on the mechanisms and interdependencies of the different design factors, which are most valuable to make informed design decisions. We present a methodology that aims to provide a better understanding and create knowledge about the influence and interactions of different architectural and technical design factors on building energy performance of a specific design task. For this purpose, we introduce Design of Experiments (DoE) in an integrated design workflow using the Design Performance Viewer (DPV) toolset, combining Building Information Modeling (BIM), distributed dynamic simulation and statistical analysis of the extensive simulation results. The experiments created using the methodology allow to identify the strength of effects and interactions of different design factors on selected performance indicators. We apply the methodology on an office retrofit case, introducing a factor scatterplot for result visualization, development and comparison of retrofit strategies. We further evaluate its potential to identify high performing strategies while balancing architectural and technical factors and their impact on energy performance.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Researching the potential of multidisciplinary design optimization (MDO) for overcoming current obstacles between the design and energy simulation domains, a MDO design centric framework, titled Evolutionary Energy Performance Feedback for Design (EEPFD) was developed to explore the applicability of this design framework to the early stage design process. EEPFD incorporates both conceptual energy analysis and the exploration of complex geometry for the purpose of providing early stage design performance feedback. This paper presents a practice based case study through a design competition project for a net zero energy school design with the purpose of evaluating the applicability and impact of EEPFD on the early stage design process. The research then compares three approaches used to obtain energy performance feedback during the case study; including in-house energy analysis, collaboration with MEP consultants, and the use of EEPFD. Through a comparative study EEPFD demonstrates the ability to generate performance feedback more rapidly than the industry standard alternatives. Challenges and suggestions for improvement of EEPFD are then presented and discussed.
Article
Full-text available
Architects operate on many intersecting planes – aesthetic, economic, political, social – whereas engineers' roles are seen to serve to concretise the ideal. From this perspective architecture displays a certain rhizomaticity, whereas engineering science is viewed as an arborescent hierarchical system of knowledge, a territorialised assemblage of facts, design rules and building codes. It is argued that this is a highly distorted view of reality, and that engineering science will be subsumed into the architectural design process. An appreciation of engineering science can lead to new and imaginative deployments of building materials to create interesting and functional spaces. In creative endeavours engineering science increases the coefficient of transversality; it catalyses rhizomaticity. There are two further pressures shaping the evolution of the architectural profession. Firstly, environmental concerns are encouraging architects to design buildings that are ecologically benign. Secondly, information technology enables knowledge to be accessed and shared, rather than simply transmitted. In other words, information technology is increasing the rhizomaticity of the architectural profession, and a range of professionals will participate in the design process on more or less equal terms. Victoria University is responding to these pressures by developing a pedagogy that syncretises architecture and engineering – that melds them into a seamless whole.