The World on Paper

"[Individuals who break through by inventing a new paradigm are] almost always...either very young or very new to the field whose paradigm they change...These are the [men and women] who, being little committed to prior practice to the traditional rules of normal science, are particularly likely to see that those rules no longer define a playable game and to conceive another set that can replace them." - Thomas S Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolution (1962)

Thursday, January 26, 2006

People : Built Environment : Comfort

People adapt to as well as modify their environments to achieve comfort. Historical evidence demonstrates ever changing human habitation patterns that are suggestive of tendencies towards adaptation of the surrounding context rather than "human self-adaptation".
"...there is man's habit of changing his environment rather than changing himself. Faced with the changing variable (e.g. temperature) within itself which it should control, the organism may make changes either within itself or in the external environment. It may adapt to the environment or adapt the environment to itself."
And thereupon,
"Man, the outstanding modifier of the environment, similarly achieves single-species ecosystems in his cities, but he goes one step further, establishing special environments for his symbionts." - Steps to an Ecology of Mind, Gregory Bateson (2000)
With the technologies of the modern world, dependence on mechanical systems in the built environment became the norm. Air conditioning technologies for example, have transformed what is regarded as 'normal' building in many different parts of the world. These services dictated the building's interior environment that as a result, the indoor climate created by the building's physical envelope has little or no relationship at all with the outside. The need for comfort brought about an indoor climate revolution wherein indoor climates are converging:

"hot environments are being cooled while cold indoor environments are being heated."- Threats and Defences in the Built Environment, Elizabeth Shove (1995)


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