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Digital Farm

Part 1 Project 2002
Guy Scott
Oxford Brookes University Oxford | UK
Problems on a Digital Farm.

A digital farm operates in response to demands made ELSEWHERE. A surgeon in New York may operate on a patient in Hong Kong, a company in Australia may requisition harddrive memory in London to process data during the night. Efficient programming allows hardware to run 24 / 7, globally.

The digital farm mediates between two ideal landscapes: a tactile one in the physical realm and an abstract one in the digital realm. But there are problems……….

How does the farm respond to changes in demand?
What effects might this have on the spaces we occupy?
How can I conceive of infinite space?

My project uses the analogy of physical growth to conceive of problems posed by digital space. Architectural issues of scale and site need to be reconsidered as they are no longer fixed, but endlessly malleable.

Digital space spawns crop cultivation theories, seasonal fluctuations, mutations and deformities, genetic manipulations, laboratory docking mechanism failures, congestion and wilt, distorted projections, accellerated or inhibited growth, and increases in supply and demand. These lead to further remote surveillance, monitoring, and multiple adjustments to the physical thresholds.

Billions of ones and zeros hurtle around the globe; to and from satellites; incontrollably into and out of rows of computers in different time zones, covering infinitesimally small and incredibly huge distances. Yet although the space is vast, it does not exist physically, but rather as an idea, a message, a wish, an intolerable annoyance, a judgement.

Guy Scott

"architects are...the prisoners of that hybrid art, where the image hardly ever exists without a combined activity." [Tschumi 1994]

This unit focused on researching the future of workspace in both the digital and physical environments. Guy's response was to position architecture between these two environments investigating dynamics of scale, growth, artifice, and permanence in the form of digital farm - a new typology of workspace.

His explorations appear to suggest an almost kafkaesque future where the occupants of his digital farm become accessory to the overwhelming nature of an idea. They occupy vast spaces with labyrinthine routes whose use is dictated by subtle ritual which, once multiplied, might lead to monumental absurdity.

Guy creates his own idealised architectural interface through which he then attempts to view the realities of which the world is composed. The fictional and real worlds begin to merge...........

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