Re-defining the Role of Interactive Architecture in Social Relationships
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With rapid advance of new technologies and mediated built space has shifted from a static context of functions serving users to a new participant of social relationships. Interactive abilities and computational power allow built space to become smart, dynamic, and interactive, gaining agency, able to receive information and think, perceive and learn, respond and change behavior in real time. This paper considers architectural components and users as participants of a social network and investigates their agency within this network, modes of interaction and how the components of this system influence each other. Perception of space within or outside of the building body has become a derivative of interaction between the space and the users, and therefore subject to design and programming by architects. The principal goal of this paper is to investigate the new definition of social role of interactive architecture and explain how it communicates with users, investigate the new properties it has and how does it influence users' behavior and space awareness. It reveals the importance of bi-directional communication between society and interactive environment. Interactive space works as a mirror, reflecting social and cultural context, or a double-sided mirror allowing interactive environment to observe users and decide how to act in accordance with these observations. Within the framework of this discourse, architectural components and people are treated as agents of one socio-technical network with equal rights and agency. It considers both human and non-human elements equally as actors within a network, employing the same analytical and descriptive methodology to all actors within a heterogeneous network.
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